The Men’s 5000m A final was a breath-taking way to start the Sunday evening of finals. Darragh McElhinney (UCD AC), Hiko Tonosa (Dundrum South Dublin AC), and Efrem Gidey (Clonliffe Harriers) were the favourites going into the race. After a pedestrian start Gidey took up the pace making it an honest race. With 400m to go all three main contenders were still in the mix. McElhinney made his move with 300m to go kicking hard down the back straight. A man with a 3.37 1500m clocking this season was always unlikely to be beat from this position and indeed he wasn’t. The Cork man crossed the line to retain his title in 13.53.84. Tonosa took the silver medal, with Gidey taking bronze.
Earlier in the day, Aaron Smith (Cilles AC) won the 5000m C race, while Colin Maher (Ballyfin AC) won the B race.
Four-time Olympian Fionnuala McCormack (Kilcoole AC) was an impressive winner of the Women’s 5000m. The Wicklow woman led from start to finish to take the title putting on a fantastic display of front running to take gold in 16.07.75. It was a fantastic day for the Nic Dhomhnaill family with two medals returning to the household of the Donore Harriers sisters. Sorcha and Ide were separated by less than a second, finishing in second and third respectively with times of 16.19.71 and 16.20.51.
Men’s 3000m Steeplechase
There was delight for the home club when Jayme Rossiter (Clonliffe Harriers) took gold in the Men’s 3000m Steeplechase. The race was closely fought with a number of athletes still in contention for gold at the bell. In a nail-biting sprint finish Rossiter saw off the challenge of Finley Daly (Sligo AC) and Liam Harris (Togher AC) to take gold in 9.26.43. Daly took second, with Harris in third. Less than a second separated the top three. Oisín Spillane (Tralee Harriers AC) just missed out on a medal.
Women’s 3000m Steeplechase
Michelle Finn (Leevale AC) took yet another national senior title in comfortable fashion in the Women’s 3000m Steeplechase. Conditions were not ideal with driving rain and strong winds for the duration of the race so Finn can be happy with her time of 9.57.72 to take gold. The Cork woman will now turn her attention to the European Championships in Munich in August. In what was a very small field with only two athletes, Aine Burke (St. Coca’s AC) took silver running a time of 12.19.81.