Kate produces two stunning performances in Athlone

St Gerard’s AC star returns with a gold medal from Athlone

St Gerard’s AC’s Kate O’Connor

The All Ireland Indoor Championships took place at the AIT International Arena in Athlone on Saturday and Sunday last.

Representing Dundalk St Gerard’s AC was the vastly experienced Kate O’Connor alongside Ellen McBride and Joe Lennon, both of whom were enjoying their first experience of All Ireland competition.

First into action was the prof logic Kate in the U18 girls high jump. In a brilliant contest, Kate produced an excellent series of jumps and produced another PB with a clearance of 1.75m which equalled the championship record.

With the gold medalist clearing 1.75m also, the first and second placings were decided on count back. This was a tremendous performance by Kate who continues to improve year on year.

Next up in the shot putt, she continued where she left off in the Leinster Championships with another excellent series of throws to win the title impressively with another PB of 14.21m. Such was her dominance on the day that all of her six throws were ahead of her nearest competitor.

Ellen McBride had her first outing at this level in the U15 girls 60m. While Ellen possesses all the required talent, having only started competing in the last year she is short on experience. Despite this, she performed brilliantly in her heat.

Ellen just missed out on the final by a few hundredths of a second, finishing a very close third place against the eventual second and fourth placers in the final. This was a fantastic showing from Ellen who will gain great benefit and confidence from the experience.

Last up was Joe Lennon who was celebrating his 14th birthday on the day while competing in the U15 boys 60m.

Like Ellen, it was all about gaining experience of competition at this level for Joe. An interrupted preparation meant he came into the race a little short on fitness but determined to do himself justice.

Once again he didn’t disappoint and despite a less than perfect start he sped home in the closing 20m to take another PB of 8.16 seconds in fifth place. He can now look forward with great promise to the outdoor season in the knowledge that with a bit more training and experience at this level he can really make an impact a both provincial and national level.

This was a very good showing from the club’s athletes and give them great confidence for the upcoming track and field season.

For Kate, it was evidence that she is ready to take on the best both nationally and internationally, while for Ellen and Joe it was valuable experience gained competing on the national stage and clear evidence that they are right at home at this level.

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