Busy day at Dangan track for county championships

Mary Barrett of Loughrea AC, who won three gold at the World Masters Games in New Zealand.
Mary Barrett of Loughrea AC, who won three gold at the World Masters Games in New Zealand.

The first day of the 2017 Galway County Track and Field Championships were held on Saturday at NUI Galway sports grounds in Dangan.

The event featured county championships for all ages from U-13 to U-19; while at Senior level, all distances on the track up to 1,500m and all field events were held.

The Senior track events over 1,500 metres were among the highlights of a packed programme, and the men’s race saw a GCH 1-2, with Jim Phelan showing a blistering turn of pace in the home straight to pip Eamon Hornibrook after a thrilling race.

Phelan also took the 200m Senior title; Siobhan Egan took on the 1,500m distance for the first time after her recent marathon team victory last October; and she also stormed to victory in the Ladies event in 5.08, with Sinead Gaffney of Craughwell second and Jean O’Connor of GCH third.

At 800m, Ben Garrard of Craughwell won the U-18/19 race, while his clubmate Gavin Cooney claimed the senior crown. Sinead Gaffney took ladies senior 800m gold, with Jean O’Connor taking the Masters title.

Majella Loftus of GCH took a double victory, winning both the Senior ladies 100m and 200m; while Cillin Greene of GCH took the Senior men’s 100m.

There were wins in the men’s and women’s senior 400m for Shane Canavan and Nicole King both of GCH; Shane O’Rourke of Tuam AC won the 110m hurdles; with Ryan McNelis of Athenry AC claiming the 400m hurdles crown.

In the Senior field events, multi eventer Michael Breathnach of GCH won gold in the shotputt, weight throw, discus, and javelin; with Barry Rafferty and Rory O’Connor of Tuam taking masters golds in the Shot and WFD. O’Connor also took gold in the M50 discus and javelin; and Keith Horan of SGAC won the Masters Javelin.

Brendan Staunton of GCH took Senior gold in the Hammer, Shane O’Rourke won the high jump and long jump for Tuam AC; Bryan Brennan of South Galway claimed Masters long jump; and Justin Lane of Tuam AC won the triple jump and Masters discus and hammer O35. In the women’s field events, Peggy Higgins of Corofin AC claimed the high jump, triple jump, long jump, and all the throws’ golds in a clean sweep of the Masters titles.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.