Louise Shanahan put on a superb performance to break the Irish 800m record at the Irish Milers Club meeting in Belfast on Saturday.
This is from my wildest dreams, I can’t believe it,” said Shanahan, whose previous best time was a 2:01.44 she ran in Belfast last year.
“I felt really good today and enjoyed every minute of the warm-up. The conditions were perfect and Ciara was the perfect windbreak throughout the race.”
Shanahan ran behind Mageean – who held the Irish record with a 1:59.69 – through the first 750 meters before battling past her fellow Olympic athlete on her way to the finish line, with Mageean finishing second in her season debut in 1:59.82.
They are now the only two Irish women in history to go under two minutes for the 800m.
“I saw 1:29 go through 600 and I felt really good,” Shanahan said. “It’s a two second PB and on Tuesday I was considering not racing, my coach was trying to convince me I was in shape. The goal this year was to break 2:01 so to beat that in my first race is incredible.”
Shanahan’s time qualifies her for both the World Championships in Eugene in July and the European Championships in Munich in August.
The 25-year-old athlete from Leevale is currently pursuing a PhD in quantum physics at the University of Cambridge, where she is coached by Phil O’Dell.
Rising sprint star Israel Olatunde broke his best time in the men’s 100m, winning in 10.35, while Tokyo Olympic champion Sophie Becker moved up to fifth on Ireland’s all-time list with a best time of 52.24 in the 400m.
Robert McDonnell of the Galway City Harriers dominated the men’s 200m, his 20.61 a PB that puts him sixth on Ireland’s all-time list.
https://www.independent.ie/sport/other-sports/athletics/louise-shanahan-breaks-irish-800m-record-at-belfast-event-41649797.html Louise Shanahan breaks the Irish 800m record in an event in Belfast