New World Records at Energia 24 Hour Race
26 June 2019
It was the 10th Anniversary of the Energia 24 hour race on Saturday 22nd June 2019, with Dorset’s Sandra Brown stealing the show in Victoria Park in Belfast at the weekend setting two new world records.
She went through the 100 mile mark in 21hrs, 15 mins and 33 seconds to crack that record on the 204th time she had completed that distance, which is another record in itself. Sandra, who is 70 year olds, then went on to beat Australian Shirley Young’s long standing world age-group record for the 24 hours.
In beating this record, she went nearly 4 miles further that the Australian covering 113 miles (182k) and she walked all the way! Her walking strategy was good enough for 24th place overall in a field of over 225 ultra-runners.
That meant that 4 world records had been set at the race in Victoria Park in the last 3 years which had earned Energia24 a place in the Guinness Book of Records.
Elsewhere, there was an absorbing battle for the podium places in the men’s race with three Cork men involved.
Padraig Mullins, who had flown in from Boston for the race and was looking to impress the Irish selectors ahead of the World Champs in France in October, was the longtime leader before defending champion Aidan Hogan took over, building a substantial lead.
However Eoin Keith, reeled him in to win his 4th National title (146 miles/235kms) with Hogan hanging on for second place (142 miles/228kms) and Mullins in third (139 miles/223 kms).
The women’s race was equally dramatic with a similar pattern as, Norway’s Therese Falk was the longtime leader before Finland’s Paula Wright came strongly through to take the win (136 miles/218kms) from Falk who finished in 2nd place (135 miles/216kms) with Newtownabbey’s Louise Smart in third (132 miles/213kms).
Paula Wright also qualified through her club, Newport AC, to win the Irish title from the defending champion Louise Smart with Rosslare’s Lorraine McMahon in third (130 miles/210kms).
The Team Relay record of 193 miles (310kms) had been set by Dublin Bay Running Club back on the Mary Peters Track in 2015. Then it had to be a mixed team, but a rule change this year brought men’s teams into the equation for the first time and the Willowfield Harriers quartet of Tim Brownlie, David Proctor, Gary Morrow and Neil Weir proceeded to demolish it, by adding another 15 miles to total 208 miles/335kms - a record that one suspects will last for some considerable time.
It was the biggest field assembled outside of the World Championships two years ago in Belfast and of the 225 who went to the line 76 passed the 100 mile mark- and 12 passed 200kms showing the continued growing strength of ultra-running in Ireland and beyond.