KH alumni in Euro final

by Karl Graham

FORMER King’s Hospital student Sara Treacy reached the final of the women’s 3,000m Steeplechase at the European Athletics Championships in Amsterdam last week.
Treacy finished in ninth place after recording a time of 9.45.19 to round of an impressive championship for herself.
She had reached the final after smashing her previous personal best of 1.98s to finish fifth in qualifying but could not repeat that feat second time around.
“I kind of put myself out there in the first 2k because I thought I didn’t have anything to lose after I ran a personal best to make the final and I was like I’m going to just put myself under pressure and see what I can do.
“I probably paid for it with about 600m to go and I started dropping back. Then I rallied and had a really strong last 200m so I don’t really know what happened in the last two laps.
“I suppose I wasn’t too far off my best even though I had raced two days ago and it’s a new thing doing heats in finals. There is a lot to work on still but a lot of positives coming from that.”
Her performance was among a number of positives from the week, not least with UCD athlete Ciara Mageean winning a bronze medal for Ireland in the women’s 1,500m.
She moved out from a congested inside lane to produce a lung busting run over the final 50 metres to finish in a time of 4.33.78, just two hundredths of a second behind second place.
A slow pace produced little excitement over the first three laps but it soon exploded into life and when Norwegian athlete Ingvil Makestad Bovim boxed in Mageean in the closing straight, the 24-year-old was forced to move sideways to the centre of the track to challenge for a medal.
Mageean likely would have secured at least silver if she wasn’t boxed in but while slightly disappointed, she was delighted to have a medal around her neck – Ireland’s 14th at the European Championships.
“I’m slightly disappointed I didn’t get silver. “It was a very, very slow race at the start. I was told the splits but I didn’t look at the clock. I’m out there to run for medals, not for times.
“Obviously the tempo upped, and everybody started running fast. It got a little messy, getting boxed in,” said Mageean.
Her club mate Karl Griffin finished eighth in his heat of the men’s 800m after clocking a season’s best of 1.49.38 – enough to win the heat that contained the eventual winner Poland’s Adam Kszczot.
Clonliffe Harriers had four athletes in action at the championships. Brian Gregan was part of the men’s 4x400m relay team that finished fifth.
In an agonising final for the team, they were seven hundredths of a second off the qualifying time for Rio.

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