RECORDS tumbled at the Mary Peters Track as Donegal athletes made it a successful afternoon at the Ulster Senior Championships this afternoon.
There were new Donegal records set by Lifford-Strabane AC aces Gareth Crawford (pictured above) and Ellie McCurdy while Cara Laverty broke a 33-year-old Finn Valley AC record in winning the 800m title.
Crawford went beyond the 67m mark for the first time to win the men’s javelin.
Crawford’s 67.20m represents a new Donegal record and it was one-two-three for the county in that event. His brother, Aaron, was second with a 60,06m throw while Dylan Kearns of Killybegs AC got third, launching a best of 55.22m.
McCurdy’s 37.64m throw earned her the silver medal in the women’s javelin. That effort eclipsed her previous best of 36.77m when winning the Irish Junior silver medal recently. This afternoon, McCurdy was beaten by Irish international heptathlete Kate O’Connor from Dundalk (48.10m).
Finn Valley AC’s Cara Laverty took the women’s 800m gold medal. Laverty’s time of 2:09.27 is a new Finn Valley AC record and wipes out the previous best, the 2:07.48 clocked by Noelle Harron at Meadowbank in 1988, a fine effort
Finn Valley AC’s former World U20 silver medalist Sommer Lecky won the high jump. Lecky took gold with a best of 1.78m, with Lifford-Strabane AC’s Shannon Craig collecting bronze (1.75m).
Brian Ó Domhnaill of Finn Valley won the men’s 3k walk in 14:37.50 with Danny Sharkey from Letterkenny AC the bronze medalist in 20:58.61.
Tir Chonaill AC’s Siobhan Doherty won the women’s 3k walk gold in 15:56.85.
James Kelly of Finn Valley AC won the men’s shot put, his 16.61m throw beating his club mate Gavin McLaughlin into second with McLaughlin taking silver with a 15.70m effort. The result is the reverse of the recent Irish Championships when McLaughlin pipped Kelly to the gold.
McLaughlin also took silver in the discus with a 43.09m throw the best of his bunch.
Roisin Flanagan, the soon-to-be Finn Valley AC athlete – whose sister Eilish goes in the women’s 300m steeplechase at the Olympic Games overnight – won the women’s 1500m gold thanks to a superbly controlled run.
Lifford-Strabane AC duo Brendan O’Donnell and Damian Crawford were second and third in the men’s hammer.
Letterkenny AC’s Nakita Burke was a fine silver medal winner in the 5000m. Burke’s 16:13.20 was beaten only by Cambridge’s Hannah Irwin, who won in 16:03.05.
In the same race, Burke’s LAC colleague Christine Russell was fourth.
Tir Chonaill AC’s Eoin Sharkey won bronze in the 400m hurdles, finishing in 58.50 seconds, while a 13.01m throw scooped Finn Valley’s Joseph Gillespie the bronze in the triple jump.