McCormack brings it all back home – and wins – at Abbotstown

Olympic marathon runner takes first cross country race of season at brand new track

 Fionnuala McCormack  on her way to winning the senior women’s race during the Autumn open cross country festival at the National Sports Campus in Abbotstown, Dublin. Photograph: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Fionnuala McCormack on her way to winning the senior women’s race during the Autumn open cross country festival at the National Sports Campus in Abbotstown, Dublin. Photograph: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

 

Two months after her 20th- place finish in the Rio Olympic marathon Fionnuala McCormack was bringing it all back home, winning the first race of the season in what was also the first race on the new National Cross Country Track at Abbotstown in west Dublin.

McCormack has wasted no time in getting back to country, where she first made her name, and is already eyeing up another podium finish at the European Cross Country, set for Chia, on the southern tip of Sardinia, on December 11th.

Her record in Europe over the past six years – two gold, three fourth places, and a sixth – neatly reflects her consistency in the event: her early season form when winning at Abbotstown suggests she’ll be right up there again two months from now. The flat, fast and relatively dry course suited her too and she covered the 6km course in 20 minutes, 29 seconds without being challenged.

She hasn’t given up on the marathon, but for now her focus will be on country – the National championships are also set for the now permanent course at Abbotstown on November 27th.

Mark Christie made a welcome return to the top of the podium to win the men’s race.

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