Excitement aplenty on Day 2 of Juvenile Indoors


There was no shortage of high-quality athletics action on display on day two of the 123.ie National Juvenile Indoor Championships at the TUS International Arena in Athlone today (April 1st).

Despite the novelty of April Fool’s Day, when the athletes from all four provinces made the journey to the Midlands it was down to serious business with several national medals on the line.

Championships records tumbled in both track and field events as stars of the future emerged.

The track action got underway with a bang as some of the country’s top up and coming middle distance talents took to the track for the 1500m finals.

Declan O’Connell (Craughwell A.C.) bagged the first championship record of the day as he stormed to gold in the Boys U16 race in 4.08.80.

Clodagh Gill (Moy Valley A.C.) looked extremely impressive as she won the Girls U17 race. Gill, who was fourth in last year’s European Youth Olympic Festival 3000m final, broke clear with 600m to go, crossing the line in a championship record of 4.36.70.

Nicole Dinan (Leevale A.C.) and Aimee Wallace (Mullingar Harriers A.C.) were side-by-side for much of the Girls U18 race before Dinan made her move a lap from the home. The Cork athlete kicked strongly to knock nearly seven seconds off the previous championship record, finishing in an impressive time of 4.31.02.

Ireland’s senior 400m sprinters have impressed in recent years and it is clear based on today’s evidence that the event is in good health at juvenile level.

Having broken the Irish U18 record over 800m at the AAI Games in January, Saoirse Fitzgerald (Lucan Harriers A.C.) continued what has been a memorable year for her to date. Fitzgerald showed her class in Girls U17 400m, demonstrating her strength in the last 100m to take gold in a championship record time of 56.78s.

Leigh O’Brien (Celbridge A.C.) lowered the championship record to take the U17 Boys crown. O’Brien clocked a time of 50.68s.

There was a family affair in the Boys U19 race as twin brothers David and Stephen Mannion (South Galway A.C.) took the gold and silver medals, respectively. David’s time of 48.24s is a huge championship record.

Victoria Amiadamen (Dooneen A.C.) hung on up the home straight to clinch the Girls U19 title in 56.75s.

The 60m finals provided plenty of excitement for spectators who remained in Athlone into the evening.

Jamie Moffatt (North Down A.C.) broke Israel Olatunde’s 2019 championship record storming to victory in 6.86s as he won the Boys U18 title.

Laura Bolster (Cushinstown A.C.) and Sean Aigboboh (Tallaght AC) took Girls and Boys U19 honours in thrilling fashion.

The walks also produced plenty of drama on the track. Only 0.03s separated Sam O’Sullivan (Clonmel A.C.) from Andrew Glennon (Mullingar Harriers A.C.) in the Boys U19 1500m race, with O’Sullivan claiming gold.

Ciara Wilson Bowen (Dundrum South Dublin A.C.) who took bronze at the National Senior Indoor Championships in February won the U19 Girls 1500m title.

In the Long Jump, Leila Colfer (St. Laurence O'Toole A.C.) won a highly competitive U18 Girls competition seeing off the challenge of rivals Okwu Backari (Leevale A.C.) and Leagh Moloney (Dooneen A.C.). Colfer jumped 5.31m. Later in the day Colfer won her 60m final in 7.61s.

Emma O’Neill (Carrick-on-Suir A.C.) won Girls U19 gold with a best leap of 5.43m.

Ava Rochford (Nenagh Olympic A.C.) was the star performer of the day in the High Jump. Rochford won the Girls U19 title with a best jump of 1.76m, just 1cm off Catriona Farrell’s championship record set in 2010.

Cara Ryan (Clonmel A.C.) will hope to one day emulate Rochford but for now can be content with taking the Girl’s U14 title with a best clearance of 1.63m to equal the championship record.

Andrew Nolan (Lough Ree A.C.) produced the standout moment of the day in the Shot Put circle as he broke the Boy’s U12 championship record with a massive throw of 10.61m.

Jack Dowley (Raheny Shamrocks A.C.) and Jamie Kennedy (Tír Chonaill A.C.) won the Boy’s U16 and U17 Triple Jump titles.

There were three new championship records set in the Boys Pole Vault. James Rochford (Ennis Track A.C.) took the U16 title with a 3.70m. Michael Kent (D.M.P A.C.) added just short of 50cm to the U17 record with an impressive best of 4.20m, while Joshua Fitzgerald (Leevale A.C) took U19 gold with 4.36m, adding 1cm to his clubmate Conor Callinan’s 2022 record.

The curtain comes down on the 2023 Irish indoor season in Athlone tomorrow.

Full Day 2 Results HERE




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