Kelly Proper joined Rob Heffernan as Ireland's most decorated indoor champion at today’s Woodies DIY national indoor championships.
Proper made it 15 national titles when she took gold in the women’s long jump with a best of 6.35 meters – a new stadium record.
Proper took seven national titles last year, and will look to make it 16 indoor titles tomorrow when she competes in the 200 meters.
She took a second stadium record in the 200 meters qualifiers, clocking 23.75 seconds.
“I’m delighted to take another title, but my form is more important” Proper said afterwards. “I want to go to a major championship again”
World champion Heffernan missed out on the Irish championships, choosing to compete in the Milrose games in New York tonight.
The Cork World champion's name dominated these championships regardless, as his race walk group strode to victory early in the day.
Alex Wright, who has switched from Great Britain to Ireland after competing at last year's World championships, was a clear winner of the men’s 5,000 meter walk.
Wright clocked 19:25:48 taking gold clear of Leevale’s Luke Hickey, who won silver in 19:56:78 with Letterkenny’s Brendan Boyce taking bronze in 20:03:91.
“I was very happy with today, it was a hard race. The time wasn’t as fast as I wanted but I didn’t ease off in training this week,” said Wright.
“We have a great group in Cork” smiled Wright. “I think we’ll have a great team in a year or two, Luke is only becoming a senior and looks great.”
“Brendan is already a top athlete over 50K. I can’t wait to put the Irish singlet on next year when I’m eligible with the guys and Rob!”
British athlete Lauren Whelan was an easy winner of the women’s 3,000 meters walk. Whelan is also part of Rob Heffernan’s group, and has joined Cork club Leevale, but will not be competing for Ireland.
Day two of the championships gets under at 1pm tomorrow and shall see Ciara Everard, Sarah Lavin and Steven Colvert all look to a grab a place at next month’s World indoor championship.
2014 National indoor champions
3,000 Meters Walk Women - Lauren Whelan – Leevale – 14:22:96
5,000 Meters Walk Men - Alex Wright – Calargy – 19:25:48
Pole Vault Men - Ian Rogers – Clonliffe Harriers – 4.60m
Shot Putt Women - Claire Fitzgearld – Tralee Harriers – 14.94
Long Jump Men - Kelly Proper – Ferrybank – 6.35m
High Jump Women - Grainne Moggan – Dundrum South Dublin – 1.68m
Women’s 3,000 meters - Deirdre Doyle – St. Laurence O’Toole – 9:53:64
Triple Jump Men - Anthony Daffurn – St.Ronan’s – 14:86m