Wind denies Smyth Olympic A Standard while Foster equals fastest time ever
Ireland's top sprinters Jason Smyth and Amy Foster put in top performances at the weekend which would both have been Irish records had it not been for the wind.
Paralympic gold medallist Jason Smyth ran his fastest time ever in Clermont, Florida at the weekend when he finished 6th in a world class 100 metres field in 10.17 secs which is 0.01 sec inside the Olympic 'A' standard for London.
Unfortunately a 3.2 metres per sec following wind was over the permitted 2 metres limit for legal times. It is nevertheless a tremendous boost for the 24 year-old Eglinton man who set his NI record of 10.22 secs on the same track a year ago. Jason expressed delight with his performance in a race which was won by Olympic silver relay medallist Keston Bledman of Trinidad in an outstanding time of 9.85 secs.
Smyths current form in Florida shows that he is well capable of achieving the elusive Olympic 'A' standard. He will be aiming to improve on his fastest legal time this year of 10.24 secs in this weekend's big Diamond League meeting in New York.
City of Lisburn AC's Amy Foster was another local sprinter who was ecstatic after equalling her fastest ever 100 metres time of 11.32 secs. However, a 2.5 metres plus wind was again in excess of the permitted limit. The Bangor woman was clearly inspired by another world class field in which she finished fifth behind Olympic gold relay medallist Alex Anderson who won in a superb 10.92 secs.
Amy's current form shows that she is a hot favourite to gain selection for Ireland for the European Championships in Helsinki at the end of the month.
Meanwhile, in Geneva Ballymena's Joanna Mills finished fifth in her 400 metres event in a season's best time 54.41 secs. The QUB student who was fourth in last year's European Junior 400 metres in Tallin has been named in a small 5-person Irish team for the World Junior Championships in Barcelona in July.
Paul McKee ran a seasons best in the 200m in 21.55. Jason Harvey was 3rd in the 400m C race with a time of 51.82. Adam McMullen was 4th in the Long Jump with 7.24 (w-0.9) and 4th in 200m in a new PB 21.86 (+1.2).
Other local athletes competing in Geneva were Lagan Valley's Ben Maze who was fourth in the 400 metres in 49.42 secs and Ballymena' Christine McMahon who was second in the 400 metres hrdles in 61.17 secs.
Memorial Leon Boyle
In Oordegem, Belgium, Lisburn AC's Kelly McNeice ran a season's best 1500 metres time to finish second in 4.17.18. Annadale's Eddie McGinley recorded a time of 8.14.98 for the 3000 metres which is just outside his PB.
Ben Maze set a new PB in the 400m with a time of 49.27 to win the race. Jason Harvey clocked 51.86 in the 400mH for second place.
Aviva Irish Schools Championships
As always Ulster had a number of good performances at the Aviva Irish Schools Championships in Tullamore. Gold medals went to Roseanna McGuickan (200m), Megan Marrs (75H and in HJ), Emma Kelso (PV) and a new championship best, Lydia Mills (LJ and TJ), Clare Dougherty (TJ) and Jacqui Burns (Javelin), Lorna Fitzpatrick (1500m), Mark McGarvey (110mH), Lucy Duggan (PV), Josh Jordan (Hammer), Kevin Murray (Javelin), Jack Magee (Javelin).
Some NI performances can be found here
More weekend updates to follow