A packed Morton Stadium last night witnessed the fastest ever 100 ran in Ireland courtesy of the second fastest man on the planet Yohan Blake a scorching 10.12.
The 100 was the highlight of what was a tremendously enjoyable and successful Meet. The conditions on the night were perfect, the threatened rain held off, by all accounts concert goers at Croke Park a mere two miles away took a bit of a soaking but the weather gods shined on Morton Stadium, a little chilly for July but virtually no wind. Simply perfect.
The night got off to a great start with the unique sixteen legged relay for club juvenile athletes adding up to a mile. Great fun and a great experience for the 160 plus young athletes competing. Rathoath AC came out on top in a time of 3 mins 34 seconds! Second were Clonliffe Harriers A with Tallaght A.C. 3rd.
IMC 800 metre races also provided club athletes with the opportunity of competing at an international Meet with four very keenly contested races.
The first international race of the evening was the Men’s 400 hurdles, unfortunately Thomas Barr had to pull out with a slight injury although the World Universities champion was there as a guest and was treated to a rendition of happy birthday led by commentator Liam Moggan. The race itself was a very tight affair with New Zealand’s Michael Cochran being strongest down the home straight to win in a time of 50.07 from Quincy Downing (USA) and Michal Broz (CZH).
Expectations were rising as the 100 men came to their blocks, a who’s who of international sprinting with the Jamaicans of course being in particular prominence. From the starters gun it was like synchronised swimming as the whole field rose as one from their blocks and tore down the straight, from the halfway stage there was no doubt that it was going to be Yohan Blake’s day, he winning in an Irish allcomers record of 10.12 from Michael Frater 10.27 and Mario Forsythe 10.3 completing a Jamaican one, two, three.
Young Marcus Lawlor (IRL) had an excellent run 4th in a time of 10.47. Imran Rahman (GBR) won the B Race in 10.65 from Christopher Sibanda of the host club Clonliffe Harriers with Joseph Odewumi (Tallaght A.C.) 3rd 10.77.
Next up was the Men’s 3000, a magnificent race with a huge field and when the pacemakers pulled off Andy Vernon led the way but found himself essentially becoming the third pacemaker as the pack sat on his shoulder with Will Geoghegan (USA) in particular looking menacing. At the bell the pack were poised behind Vernon and on the back straight Vernon was left as Geoghegan struck for home with Sam McEntee (AUS) right on his shoulder, at the final bend McEntee moved wide and sprinted down the home straight to win the Albie Thomas Men’s 3000 in a time of 7.48.35, a fraction behind was Geoghegan 7.48.79 with Canada’s Ross Proudfoot 3rd in 7.49, Vernon was 4th 7.51.13.
There were excellent runs throughout the field, Zak Patterson (AUS) a late addition to the field justifying his inclusion with a huge PB as he finished 6th in a time of 7.53.49.
Next up was the Women’s 200 where the home fans cheered on Kelly Proper (IRL) to a fine win in a time of 23.54 from Amy Allcock (GBR) 24.03 and Ashley Kelly (BVI) 24.04.
There were two 400 races for men. A fantastic race 1 in particular won by Jarryd Dunn (GBR) in 45.89, Brian Gregan of host club Clonliffe Harriers was 2nd after and excellent run in a time of 45.99 and Pat Feeney (USA) 3rd in 46.61.
Race 2 was won by Andrew Steele (GBR) 46.18, Grant Plenderleith (GBR) was 3rd 47.54 and Brian Murphy (IRL) 3rd 47.56.
The BMC –v- IMC Mile was won by young Kevin Mulcaire in a fine time of 4.04.12, James O’Hare was 2nd 4.06.21 with Kevin Bell 3rd 4.06.60. In the match the IMC beat their British counterparts.
On then to the 800 metre races. New Zealand’s Angela Petty, the World Universities champion came looking for a fast race and in particular looking to run sub 2. She bravely followed the pacemaker and once the pacemaker pulled off powered on in front and true to her word ran sub 2 1.59.89, a fraction off the stadium record but the first sub 2 minute 800 seen at Morton Games. US visitor McKayla Fricker was a battling 2nd 2.01.35 with Alexandra Bell (GBR) 3rd 2.01.82.
In the night`s field events Douwe Alems (NED) won an exciting High Jump (2.21m) with Ireland`s Barry Pender 2nd. While Luke Cutts (GBR) made it three in a row in the pole Vault (5.30m) from European Junior champion Adam Hague (GBR).
The Men’s 800 produced the surprise of the night with a magnificent Irish win from young Karl Griffin. The pack coming down the home straight with Declan Murray looking like he was going to win only to get swallowed up metres from the line as Griffin came with a late charge to win in a time of 1.47.47. Michael Rutt (USA) was 2nd 1.47.60 with Robby Andrews (USA) 3rd 1.47.80.
Minutes later the Women’s International Mile produced another Irish win, the third of the night as Ciara Mageean took on a quality international field holding off the pack to come home in a time of 4.30.64, the first Irish winner of the Women’s International Mile at Morton Games. Heather Wilson (USA) was 2nd 4.31.19 with Shelby Houlihan (USA) 3rd 4.31.17.
Finally the Morton Mile at 9 p.m. sharp bang on time. Whilst not quite as fast as last years sizzler it was a truly magnificent race. At the bell any one of a half a dozen could have taken the title but in the end it was the tall Australian Jeff Riseley who prevailed taking the Morton Mile in a time of 3.57.09, Pat Casey, for the second successive year, was once again the bridesmaid 2nd in 3.57.36 with Riley Masters 3rd 3.57.48.
The first nine all ran sub 4 including two maiden sub 4s from Irelands Tomas Cotter (3.58.50) and Polands Greg Kalinowski (3.58.07).
Morton Games would like to thank all our sponsors without whom it would not have been possible to put on such an excellent nights entertainment, the athletes for their continued support of the Meet, the hard working officials not just on the night but in the weeks and indeed months leading up to the Meet and the fans who turned out in their droves.
Jamaican 1, 2, 3: Yohan Blake , Michael Frater , Mario Forsythe
Start of 2015 Morton Mile
Morton Mile: Jeff Riseley (AUS) 1st, Pat Casey (USA) 2nd, Riley Masters (USA) 3rd
Ciara Mageean wins Target McConnells Women`s International Mile