26 February 2018


Multi-Event star Kate O’Connor (St Gerard’s AC Dundalk / Gough, Kerr, McMullen, O’Connor, Reynolds) continued her recent record breaking form with a new Northern Ireland and Irish Under 20 Javelin record this weekend (Sunday 25th February 2018).

Competing at the Loughborough Winter Throws Meeting, Kate smashed her throws coach Laura Kerr’s fourteen year old NI record with a 47.93m effort, before further extended that to 48.44m with her next throw.

The Commonwealth Games bound athlete then landed a competition winning effort of 48.61m (1st place) to complete a memorable day of competition.

After the event, Kate posted on social media: “Delighted to have got a new PB of 48.61 in my first Javelin comp of the year, also breaking the Athletics NI and Irish Athletics U20 record.  A massive thanks to The Mary Peters Trust who helped me get a new Javelin this year.”

Commenting on Kate's first javelin outing of 2018 ahead of the Commonwealth Games, Athletics NI Coach Development Lead & throws coach to Kate - Laura Kerr said:

"Kate was very impressive today, not only in smashing the previous Northern Ireland U20 record in the first round but going on to throw over 47m four times and extend her winning mark to 48.61m. This also exceeded the Irish U20 record set in 1982.

I would like to thank Loughborough Sport and British Athletics for accommodating us at this competition which acts a trial for British athletes ahead of the European Athletics Winter Throws Cup.”

Laura added: “I am also delighted to see an Irish U20 record from Pole Vaulter Ellie McCartney and outstanding run from Davicia Patterson in the 400m this weekend. Coaches Jim Alexander and Bill Kelly are doing a great job!

Youth Academy athletes continue to reap rewards for their dedicated approach as we continue our mission to enhance their technical and physical preparation striving toward senior success. 20-year-old Megan Marrs breakthrough to the Great Britain Senior Team for next weekend's World Indoors will act as inspiration for our juniors locally."


Ellie McCartney sets new Irish Under 20 Pole Vault record:


There was also new Irish Under 20 Pole Vault record for Athletics NI Youth Academy athlete Ellie McCartney (City of Lisburn AC / Jim Alexander).  Ellie cleared 3.75m for joint 2nd place at the England Athletics Under 20 Championships, bettering her own previous record of 3.72m.


Megan Marrs and Adam McMullen compete at Muller Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix:


Local athletes Megan Marrs (City of Lisburn AC / Jerzy Maciukiewicz) and Adam McMullen (Crusaders AC / Alan Kennedy) were in action at the prestigious Muller Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix in Scotland (Sunday 25th February 2018).


British Athletics 60 metres hurdles champion, Megan, claimed 5th place in her heat at the Emirates Arena in 8.27 seconds.


The 20-year-old, who received a call-up to the Great Britain & NI World Indoor Championships team, said that competing at the Glasgow event was a valuable experience.


“That wasn’t what I was hoping for obviously, but it was the first race of the year when I’ve had people ahead of me,” she said. “That took me by surprise a little, so I have to learn from it and use it to my advantage next weekend.


“But this was brilliant. It was the first time this year I’ve gone up against international competition, so I want to use what I’ve learnt in Birmingham and put in a better performance than I did here.”


Fellow Northern Ireland athlete Adam McMullen, who may also compete at next week’s World Indoor Championships if a late invite from the IAAF comes through, took 7th place in the Long Jump.  Adam’s best jump of the day was his final attempt, a 7.79m leap.


After the competition, Adam said: “7.79 was all I could muster today. Disappointed with myself that I couldn’t have been more competitive but there are positives to take from everything. My determination for success hasn’t changed and I’m keeping my head up and still driving forward.”

Davicia Patterson records new personal best in Abbotstown:

Young Beechmount Harriers athlete Davicia Patterson (Billy Kelly) recorded a new 400m indoor personal best of 54.78 to secure 1st place at the Leinster Indoor Track & Field Championships in Abbotstown, Ireland (Sunday 25th February 2018).

Paul Pollock wins Brighton Half Marathon:

Northern Ireland’s Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders / Andrew Hobdell) led the 12,000 strong field home at a windy Brighton Half Marathon in England today (Sunday 25th February 2018).

The Rio Olympian clocked 1:06:57 for 1st place, finishing well over a minute ahead of his closest rival, well-known endurance athlete Paul Martelletti (VP & Tower Hamlets AC), who crossed the line in 1:08:16 (2nd place).

After the race, Paul expressed his delight via social media: “Delighted to end another solid training week leading home 12,000 windswept runners.  Amazing atmosphere and support all round!”

Fionnuala Ross narrowly misses podium place at Scottish XC Championships:

Fionnuala Ross (Armagh AC / Dermot Kerr) narrowly missed a podium place at the Lindsays Scottish National XC Championships in Falkirk, Scotland (Saturday 24th February 2018).

Northern Ireland international Fionnuala, who was representing her Scottish club Shettleston Harriers, secured 5th place in a quality field.  The Scotland based athlete covered the 10k course in 38:51. The race was won by Mhairi Maclennan (Edinburgh University Hare & Hounds AC) in 37:49 (1st place).

Despite the strong performance, Fionnuala was disappointed with her own run, posting on social media: “Massively disappointed with today but sometimes the legs don’t wanna play ball. Scottish Athletics put on another fab event, my only complaint… where was the mud?! It’s been a good xc season and in a day or two I’ll see the positives… starting with Shet (Shettleston Harriers) ladies getting silver!

In the men’s 10k, mountain-trail expert Eoin Lennon (Carnethy HRC / Paul Giblin) impressed with a top ten finish.  Eoin crossed the line in 34:29 (10th place).  Derry Track Club’s Conan McCaughey (Malcolm McCausland) followed in 35:32 (25th place).  The race was won by Kristian Jones (Dundee Hawkhill Harriers) in 33:05 (1st place).