Shanahan and Coscoran Take the Honours at Star Studded Irish Milers Meeting

16 May 2023

Shanahan and Coscoran Take the Honours at Star Studded Irish Milers Meeting

Written by Brian Hill


The weekend’s Belfast Irish Milers meeting at the Mary Peters Track fully lived up to expectations when Cork’s Louise Shanahan almost broke her own 800m Irish record.

This meeting is rapidly acquiring a reputation as the event to compete in as many athletes took full advantage of perfect sunny conditions to set a series of personal bests aided by the sheltered location of the track.


There was eager expectation for the Women’s 800m where Shanahan was determined to score another victory over Mageean. Ciara was well placed with 200m left but the first 4 then bunched in the home straight. 26 year old post grad student Shanahan broke from the pack with 50m left and crossed the line in 1 min 59.53 secs which is only 0.11 secs off her Irish record set here a year ago. UK indoor bronze medallist Abigail Ives was second in 1.59.92 followed by Euro U23 champion Isabelle Boffey with NI’s Silver Commonwealth Medallist, Ciara in 4th place.


A delighted Shanahan said:

“I should have run faster but I had to get round other bodies in the home straight. I knew I was in the same shape as a year ago. After a slow start my training has been going really well especially in the last 10 days. I genuinely believed I’d do well here. I’m now qualified for the World Champs in Budapest.”


Just prior to this event Star of the Sea’s Andrew Coscoran decided to make the 3,000m a one man event. The 26 year old 1,500m specialist had set a new Irish indoor record in this event back in February. At Upper Malone no one followed his breakneck pace despite the quality of 3 GB competitors and local star Nick Griggs.


Coscoran’s solo effort produced an 80m lead at one stage and eventually resulted in victory in a PB of 7.50.87. In a frantic sprint by the chasers Mid Ulster schoolboy Nick Griggs (CNDR Track Club) just got the verdict for second in 7.53.24 from Euro indoor finalist James West (7.53.24) and England’s Will Battershill.


Euro Junior champion Nick whose time again broke his own Irish junior record said: “I thought about going after Andrew but I decided to wait and see what happened as it is my first race of the season. I was closing rapidly on the winner and might have got him with 100m left “

In the Women’s 400m Sharlene Mawdsley started her season in style with her second fastest time of 51.75 secs to win by over a second from GB’s Bundy- Davies. The 24 year old who was part of the Irish 400m record relay team in the Euros said she was delighted with her time so early in a season where she is aiming for the World Championships in August.

Another Budapest hopeful is Bandon’s Phil Healy who is the current Irish 100m record holder. The multi Irish champion took the 200m with ease in 23.70 secs and then said she would determine later in the season as to whether she would concentrate on the 200m or 400m.

Holland’s Bram Buigel won a highly competitive 1,500m in 3.42.88 which was a one second PB. He said it was perfect preparation for his 800m specialist event.

Donore’s Jack Rafferty repeated his 400m victory from last year with a time of 46.68 secs. In a fast Mens 800m Ethan Hussey of Leeds recorded a tight win in 1.46.18 from England’s Thomas Randolph (1.46.83). Galway’s Robert McDonnell was an easy winner in the 100m in 10.46 after the withdrawal of Irish record holder Israel Oatlunde.