DAY 2: OLATUNDE BREAKS IRISH 100M RECORD IN EUROPEAN FINAL
Israel Olatunde (UCD AC) has broken Paul Hession’s 100m Irish record on a historic night for Irish athletics at the European Athletics Championships in Munich tonight (Aug 16th).
Olatunde produced the performance of his life, in the race of his life, to cross in a stunning 10.17 which broke the record which had stood since 2007.
The record-breaking performance was made all the more impressive in that Olatunde had run a 10.20 semi-final an hour previous, but neither that or the occasion stopped the new star of Irish sprinting claim the record which he had threatened multiple times in recent months.
The 6th place finish in a European final completes a remarkable rise to the top table of European sprinting for the 20-year-old who is trained by Daniel Kilgallon who leads a group that has also seen European 400m finalist Rhasidat Adeleke rise through it’s ranks.
Olatunde’s championships is set to continue later this week with the new Irish 100m record holder set to join the men’s 4x100m team who go in the heats from 9am on Friday.
Tonight’s 100m medals went the way of Marcell Jacobs (ITA) 9.95 CR, Zharnel Hughes (GBR) 9.99, and Jeremiah Azu (GBR) 10.13.
There was also another superb top 10 finish for Raheny’s Brian Fay in the 5,000m final tonight. Fay claimed a top 10 finish at last December’s European Cross Country Championships in Dublin, and the University of Washington athlete continued the trend tonight with another fast finishing 8th place performance to cross in 13.31.87.
Darragh McElhinney also went in the 5,000m final and showed real ambition at the bell to go in pursuit of the leading 6 athletes. Those exertions took their toll coming into the final 250 meters and would see the Cork star cross in 16th place in 13.39.11 which was not a fair reflection on his performance on the night.
The performances from McElhinney and Fay in the 5,000m, alongside that 6th place from Olatunde in the 100m continues the huge wave of optimism surrounding this new generation of young Irish athletics stars.
DAY 3: WEDNESDAY 17TH
Commonwealth Games silver medallist Kate O'Connor will begin her busy 2-day schedule in the heptathlon from 9.30am tomorrow morning. The Irish record holder will start her competition in the 100m hurdles before taking on the high jump, shot put, and 200m. O’Connor will return to the Olympic Stadium in Munich on Thursday for another 3-event schedule, concluding with the 800m at 8.55pm.
Thomas Barr will look to channel memories of his ‘Wunderbarr’ performance in 2018 which saw him claim a European bronze medal on German soil. The Ferrybank star has banked a valuable block of training since the World Championships in Oregon last month and will fear no one should he make it to yet another major final. Barr is the top ranked athlete in heat 2 of the 400m hurdles which is set for 10.12am (Irish time) tomorrow.
All eyes will then turn to 19-year-old Rhasidat Adeleke who will return to the track at 9.02pm for the 400m final. The Irish 400m record holder (50.70) will go from lane 1 in her first major final.
Team Ireland European Championships
(Times listed in Irish Time)
- 9.30am Women’s Hep 100mH: Kate O’Connor
- 10.12am Men’s 400mH Heat 2: Thomas Barr
- 10.35am Women’s Hep High Jump Group B: Kate O’Connor
- 6.49pm Women’s Hep Shot Put: Kate O’Connor
- 8.10pm Women’s Hep 200m: Kate O’Connor
- 9.02pm Women’s 400m Final: Rhasidat Adeleke
Entry Lists and full results: HERE
Where to watch: HERE