Dublin or Doha? Marathon dilemma for Mick Clohisey

The Dublin race comes three weeks after the marathon at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar

Ireland’s Mick Clohisey running the European Cross Country in  Tilburg, the Netherlands. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Ireland’s Mick Clohisey running the European Cross Country in Tilburg, the Netherlands. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

 

As if Mick Clohisey wasn’t torn enough already, the Dublin Marathon selling out months in advance has added to his dilemma. Run your native city or run for your country? 

By Monday morning all 20,000 entries for Dublin had sold out, 10½ months ahead of the event, set for October 27th.

Clohisey also wants to run Dublin, but it comes three weeks after the marathon at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar, for which he has already qualified.

Either way it’s exciting times for the Raheny man who just 11 weeks after finishing 18th at the European Championship marathon in Berlin in August, was the top Irish finisher in Dublin, sixth overall in 2:15:58 – the fastest Irish time in Dublin in 19 years.

It was his first time running his native city, and given the unprecedented demand for next year – also the 40th anniversary of Dublin – it’s already shaping up to be one of the running highlights of 2019. 

“Dublin was brilliant this year, the buzz of running it, the coverage it got, and of course it being my home town,” says Clohisey, who on Sunday was also part of the Irish senior men’s team at the European Cross Country in Tilburg, the Netherlands.

“And the exposure was great for me. People coming up to me saying ‘well done on winning Dublin’, when I didn’t even win it, I was only best Irish man.

“Doha is a tricky one. It’s always hard to turn down the chance to represent your country, but there’s a risk there as well. The conditions certainly won’t be ideal for marathon running, even with the midnight start. It will still be high 20s. It will have to be one or the other, obviously.”

Late in the evening

A lot of people are still questioning the IAAF’s reasoning behind awarding the desert state its World Championships, especially as most events will be staged late in the evening to avoid the heat: they also toughened the marathon qualifying standard, from 2:19:00 to 2:16:00 for men, although Clohisey’s time in Dublin is inside that. 

In the meantime he is targeting the London Marathon in April with a view to improving his best of 2:14:55. Speaking at the launch of the 2019 Kia Race Series, featuring nine regional races in seven counties (the male and female winners getting to drive a new Kia Stonic for one year), Clohisey also admitted the running boom was good for his business as a self-employed running coach.

“Even with the corporate groups people are taking their running a lot more seriously, doing interval sessions on the track. It’s enjoyable, great to be out there helping other people with their running. From my coaching side, and a business point of view, you have to ensure they are well prepared, and that they enjoy it too.” 

For more information see www.popupraces.ie

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