Sean Tobin secures 3000m European final spot as Sarah Lavin also progresses
Sean Tobin has secured his place in 3000m final at the European Indoor Championships with a step perfect performance in Torun this morning. The Clonmel AC athlete was in contention from the gun and a fastest qualifier spot was his reward. Tobin ran the perfect race in heat 2 of the 3000m which resulted in him attaining the 5th fastest time of all those qualifying for the final.
The 7.47.71 performance was also a new personal best for Tobin and ranks as the 6th fastest ever indoor 3000m by an Irishman. He’ll be back in action on Sunday afternoon at 4.52pm for the 3000m final where he’ll line up against European’s elite including Norwegian star Jakob Ingebrigsen who claimed the 1500m gold medal last night.
2013 European U20 silver medallist Sarah Lavin will also be back in action on Sunday as she progressed through her round 1 heats as an automatic qualifier in the 60m hurdles. The Emerald AC athlete stormed to a personal best time of 8.06 to continue her blistering start to 2021. The time shattered her old PB of 8.13 and further strengthens her 2nd place position on the Irish all-time list, with only Derval O’Rourke running faster. Lavin will be back in the starting blocks for the semi-final on Sunday at 12.30pm.
Saturday March 6th (Morning session):
Day 3 at the European championships got up and running for Irish athletes in the 60m where the trio of Leon Reid, Israel Olatunde, and Dean Adams took to the starting blocks for the first round of heats. The 60m heats looked ultra-competitive on paper with only 2 automatic qualifiers going through from each of the 9 heats, along with the next 6 fastest.
Leon Reid, who is second on the Irish all-time list went in heat 5 and crossed the line in 5th place in a time of 6.75 which was not enough to progress to the semi-final stage. Reid’s attention will now turn to the outdoors and Olympic qualification.
Israel Olatunde went in the 8th heat and the Irish U20/23 record holder will take great heart from his first senior international appearance. The UCD AC man finished in 4th place in a time of 6.79 and will no doubt be back on this stage in the years to come.
National indoor champion Dean Adams went in the final 60m heat of the day and Ballymena & Antrim A.C. man crossed the line in 7th place in a time of 6.89. The appearance secured Adams his first senior Irish (individual) cap at the age of 30, and will no doubt motivate the next generation of aspiring sprinters.
2020 national indoor champion John Travers was first up in the 3000m for team Ireland. Travers was well positioned for much of the race and went with the injection in pace set by Mohamed Katir of Spain over the final 1000 meters. Unfortunately, the exertions seemed to take their toll in the finish with Travers coming home in 8th place in 8:05.96.
Tobin was up next and as mentioned ran the perfect race in the second heat which resulted in him claiming that European final spot.
Brian Fay who was a late call up the the European indoor team faced a tough task in heat 3 of the 3000m where he lined up against Jimmy Gressier (FRA), Isaac Kimeli (BEL), and Jakob Ingebrigsen (NOR) who would go on to claim the first 3 automatic qualifying spots. The Raheny Shamrock AC man stayed in the chasing pack led by Ingebrigsten for much of the race and crossed the line in 7th place in a time of 7:56.13.
Women’s 60m Hurdles
Sarah Lavin was the sole Irish representative in the 60m hurdles, and she secured her place in Sunday’s final with a performance which smashed her old PB. The Emerald AC athlete looked supremely controlled as she crossed the line in 8.06 behind Visser (NED) and Sember (GBR) for third place.
Saturday March 6th (Evening Schedule):
- Women’s 800m Semi Final: Nadia Power (6.16pm)
- Men’s 800m Semi Final: Cian McPhillips (6.33pm) and Mark English (6.41pm)
- Women’s 400m Final: Phil Healy (7.25pm)