Phil Healy, Georgie Hartigan and Leon Reid produced the standout performances on day two of the Irish Life Health elite micro-meet in Abbotstown on Sunday. Healy clocked the second fastest indoor 400m in history by an Irishwoman with 51.99, Hartigan the second fastest 800m ever indoors by an Irishwoman with 2:01.48, while Reid moved to second on the Irish all-time list over 60m by clocking 6.68.
Healy’s time ranked behind only Karen Shinkins’ national record of 51.58 and catapulted the Bandon AC athlete into contention for the European Indoor Championships in early March. The time puts her sixth on this year’s European rankings and 13th in the world. Back in second, national outdoor 400m champion Sophie Becker booked her place at the European Indoors with a PB of 53.20, as did Sharlene Mawdsley with a PB of 53.56.
The fast times kept coming in the women’s 800m, where five of the six athletes ran personal bests, with Georgie Hartigan leading three athletes inside the qualifying time for the European Indoors.
“I’m kind of in shock, to be honest,” said Hartigan, who is based in England and recently declared for Ireland. “I thought if I went out hard, got to 600 pretty quick then I’d be able to hold on and I just about did that. It’s a testament to the amount of girls running fast in Ireland that I had to run that quick (to win).”
Leevale’s Louise Shanahan smashed her personal best to finish second in 2:01.67, with Iseult O’Donnell doing likewise in third with 2:02.29.
Israel Olatunde smashed the Irish U20 and U23 records in the men’s 60m, the 18-year-old UCD student clocking a blazing 6.74 to book his place at next month’s European Indoors before going even faster an hour later, clocking 6.73 to again rewrite the record books. Ahead of him, Leon Reid clocked 6.72 to secure his spot at the European Indoors in the first of two 60m races, and the Menapians man capped a fine weekend with his 6.68 an hour later to move to second on the Irish all-time list behind Paul Hession.
Molly Scott was fastest in the women’s 60m with 7.36, which qualified her for the European Indoors.
In the men’s 1500m, Luke McCann had a breakthrough run to put himself into contention for a spot at the European Indoors, the 22-year-old Dubliner clocking 3:40.03 to move third on the Irish rankings this season, leaving selectors to choose between him and Brian Fay for the third spot on the Irish team after Andrew Coscoran and Paul Robinson. McCann ran faster than Fay with his time today, however Fay defeated him in a head-to-head race in France last weekend, clocking 3:41.73. John Travers finished a strong second to McCann in 3:41.74.
Sarah McCarthy was best in the women’s long jump with 5.94m, while Shane Howard jumped 7.12m in the men’s long jump.