One World Record, Two National Records, 11 National Medals and plenty of PBs - it was a Nationals Masters Championship like no other for MSB in Athlone today!
Shane Healy, the star of the show, wowed audiences with his outstanding 800m time of 2.02.46 sealing yet another World Record for the M55 category - annihilating the previous world record holder (Italian Francesco D'Agostino) time of 2.06.04.
Shane has set the bar at an incredible standard for others to chase in the coming years and it comes just weeks after setting his last World Record for the M55 3000m in the NIA. We are all so proud of Shane who has brought the MSB colours to a world stage!
He wasn't the only MSBer to set new standards though and we were thrilled to see our Masters Triple Jumper Michael McCarthy (Snr) take national Gold and set a new National Record with his magnificent jump of 12.07m in the M35 category!
While this is not an overall PB for Michael (his PB is a stunning 12.32m achieved as a senior), he has set a spectacular new standard for Masters M35! Congratulations Michael!
The national medals kept coming as our master sprinters Declan McDonagh, Sinead O' Connor & Rob Ryan took to the track. Sinead was first up in the W40 60m where she came 4th, agonisingly missing out on bronze by milli seconds. After a slight stumble in the blocks Sinead ran a superb 8.55s. 👏👏
Declan McDonagh followed in the M35 60m with an incredible run and nailed a bronze medal in a time of 8.17s! Congratulations Declan.
Sinead returned to the track for her W40 200m with added gusto and this time she got her just deserts with an outstanding run of 27.99s and claimed her well deserved national bronze!
Rob Ryan put in a really strong performance in the M40 400m coming home in a super time of 1.02.76 and taking 6th place. Well done Rob!
All of our sprinters (coached by Ruth Moloney) pulled together at the end of the day for the most exciting event of all - the masters relay!
Our ladies' team, made up of Sinead O'Connor, Ciara Kealy, Geraldine McCauley and Nuala O'Dwyer made their debut appearance as a masters team with 3 of the 4 runners competing on the track for the first time! They were nothing short of magnificent!
All four ladies gave an outstanding performance and secured a superb bronze medal in a stunning time of 2.01.10 beating their Galway City Harriers and Clonliffe competitors! This was an outstanding achievement for our ladies whom we are very proud of! A special thank you to Ani Rebegea, our sub who waited until the bitter end to support the team which was much appreciated.
Our men's team, made up of Mark Woodger, Michael McCarthy (Snr), Rob Ryan and Gavin Howlin put in an equally exciting performance and came home in 4th place. Well done to all four athletes and a special thank you to Mark Woodger and Michael McCarthy (Snr) who stepped in to take the place of Declan McDonagh and Paul Agnew.
There was more success to be had with our field eventers and distance running. Declan McDonagh was thrilled to take bronze in the M35 long jump with a leap of 4.58m 👏. Ani Rebegea snatched a national silver in the W50 high jump with a jump of 1.20m 👏.
Ani also lined out for the W50 800m and put in a super performance finishing in 2.53.07 taking 6th place! Mark Woodger secured an indoor PB for shot put throwing his 6kg shot out to 8.65m in the M50 category. Well done Mark! He also nailed a second PB and a national silver medal for a fantastic performance in his 60m hurdles where he ran 11.61s 👏.
It didn't end there for Mark a he also lined up for M50 long jump where he finished 5th with 4.05m.
And that marked the end of a triumphant day of competition and performance for our masters athletes. We had 11 masters athletes competing today, four of whom were competing for the very first time! Nine of our 11 athletes came home with national medals and all 11 came home with stories, experiences and memories which will long outlive any medal.
Congratulations to them all - as a club we are so proud and thrilled to have such a vibrant group of masters athletes in MSB.
Days like today show that the future of Masters athletics looks very good for MSB!
Report: Ruth Moloney