29 May 2018


Top Northern Ireland stars led by example with notable performances as local athletes impressed at events across Europe over the Bank Holiday weekend (Friday 25th – Sunday 27th May 2018).

The Local athletes included Davicia Patterson (Beechmount Harriers / William Kelly), James Kelly (Finn Valley AC / John Kelly), Kerry O’Flaherty (Newcastle AC / Richard Rodgers), Ciara Mageean (UCD AC / Steve Vernon), Leon Reid (Birchfield Harriers / James Hillier), Megan Marrs (City of Lisburn AC / Jerzy Maciukiewicz) and Breege Connolly (City of Derry AC / Donie Walsh).

17 year old Davicia Patterson recorded a new personal best, Northern Ireland record and IAAF World Junior Championships ‘A’ standard at the AAI Games in Santry, Dublin.

Competing in the 400m, the up and coming star, who represented Northern Ireland at the Commonwealth Youth Games in 2017, broke the beam in an impressive 53.64.

Also in Santry, there were wins for junior athletes Finn O’Neill (City of Derry AC) and Naimh McCorry (Annalee AC) in the Combined Events Championships.

Full results from the AAI Games and Combined Events Championships are available HERE.

There was also an Under 20 record and another IAAF World Junior ‘A’ standard for Finn Valley AC’s James Kelly.  Competing in Derry/Londonderry (Sunday 27th May 2018), James launched his Shot Putt 18.82m for victory, beating his brother John’s previous junior record of 18.61m. 

IFAM Track & Field Meeting (Oordegem, Belgium):

Meanwhile, in Belgium, Kerry O’Flaherty kicked off her 3,000m Steeplechase season with a podium place and a European Athletics Championships ‘B’ standard in Belgium (Saturday 26th May 2018).

The Rio Olympian impressed with a 9:53.00 finish for 3rd place at the prestigious meet, which has attracted superb performances from local athletes in the past.

On the night, there was also excellent performance by a number of other familiar faces.

Northern Ireland Commonwealth Games star Adam Kirk-Smith (Derry Track Club), clocked 8:44.98 in the 3,000m Steeplechase.  Jason Harvey (Crusaders AC) made a welcome return to competition with a 52.60 finish over the 400m hurdles.

Up and coming star Lauren Roy (City of Lisburn AC) recorded 12.20 (-1.6) for 100m and 25.17 (+0.5) for 200m, while club mate Gareth Thompson also doubled up over 100m and 200m, running 11.46 (-0.2) for 100m and 23.18 (-2.0) for 200m.

Sprinters Michael McCauley (Ballymena & Antrim AC), Dean Adams (Ballymena & Antrim AC) and Christian Robinson (City of Lisburn AC) were in action over 100m, with Michael clocking a PB of 10.93 (-1.5), Dean running 11.05 (-1.2) and Christian breaking the beam in 11.28 (-1.0).

A mere 0.01 of a second split Andrew Mellon (Crusaders AC) and Craig Newell (Ballymena & Antrim AC) in the same 400m race, with Andrew leading the way in 47.82 and Craig following in 47.83.  Full results for the event are available HERE.

BMC Watford Grand Prix 2018 (Watford, England):

Ciara Mageean won the highly competitive Ladies 1500m ‘A’ race at the BMC Watford Grand Prix (Saturday 26th May 2018), running 4:09.11.

Kelly Neely (City of Lisburn AC) recorded 4:25.08 in the same race!

In the 800m, Callum Crawford-Walker (Annadale Striders) ran 1:52.95, less than a second outside his PB.  Full results from the event are available HERE.

European Club Championships (Birmingham, England):

Northern Ireland Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Leon Reid helped his Birchfield Harriers team to a 4th place finish at the European Club Championships (Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th May 2018).

Leon was racing in his favourite 200m event, were he recorded 20.85 (-0.4) for victory.

Lekkoatletyczny Mityng Gwiazd (Radom, Poland):

British Champion Megan Marrs was in action at the Lekkoatletyczny Mityng Gwiazd in Radom, Poland (Sunday 27th May 2018).

The City of Lisburn AC athlete clocked her fastest ever time over the 100m hurdles, 13.23, albeit with an illegal +4.0 m/s wind.

Halle International Throws Meet (Germany):

In Germany, Javelin throwers Jack Magee (Ballymena & Antrim AC) and Gareth Crawford (Lifford Strabane AC) performed well at the Halle International Throws Meet.  Jack landed a 62.47m effort, while Gareth Crawford (Lifford Strabane) reached 58.13m.

EMF Edinburgh Half Marathon:

Breege Connolly excelled as hundreds of local runners took part in the EMF Edinburgh Marathon Festival in Scotland this weekend (Saturday 26th – Sunday 27th May 2018).

The European Championships bound marathoner took control of the ladies race in the half marathon after 12 miles, surging to victory in 1:16:07 (1st place), a new personal best by 12 seconds.

Early leader Annabel Simpson (Fife AC), who was twelve seconds ahead of Breege at the half way mark, followed in 1:16:28 (2nd place).  Full results for the event can be found HERE.

Closer to home…

Irish Milers Club (IMC) Belfast Meeting:

Northern Ireland internationals Emma Mitchell (QUB AC / Eamonn Christie) and Danny Mooney (Letterkenny AC) excelled at the IMC Belfast Meeting, which was held at the Mary Peters Track (Saturday 26th May 2018).

Emma saw off GB & NI international Claire Duck (Leeds AC) to win the 3,000m in 9:16.27, while in the feature Men’s Mile, Danny Mooney raced clear in the final lap to record 4:06.88.