Power and Flanagan shine for Ireland in Sweden

Duo pick up medals in European Under-23 Championships, Mageean runs a personal best

Winning not one but two women’s distance running medals in quick succession has left the Irish athletics celebrating a successful European Under-23 Championships in Gavle, Sweden.

First up was Nadia Power from Templeogue AC in Dublin, who battled hard to win the bronze medal in a tactical 800 metres, clocking 2:06.68; there was some brief drama when Power found herself disqualified for a supposed obstruction, only this was successfully appealed by Irish team operations manager Richard Rodgers along with high performance manager Paul McNamara.

Power put in an excellent performance in the final, finishing strongly to claim third place behind the British pair of Jemma Reekie and Ellie Baker.

Then came Eilish Flanagan from the Carmen Runners club in Tyrone, who came away with a silver medal in the 3,000m steeplechase in her first major track championship in a new personal best of 9:51.72.


It brings Ireland's medal count to eight at these championship since it was started in 1997. Ireland hadn't won a medal here since 2011, when Brian Gregan won 400m bronze.

Ciara Mageean has also put in an excellent time as she builds towards the World Championships in Doha at the end of September, running 4:19.03 for the mile in Monaco, a personal best by over three seconds to finish eighth in what was a World record-breaking race by the winner Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands (4:12.33).

The time run by Mageean also edges closer to the Irish record hold by Sonia O’Sullivan’s of 4:17.25. The 27-year-old also secured the Olympic time at the 1,500m split with a time of 4:01.21 well inside the needed standard of 4:04.20. Her next race planned is the London Diamond League on Saturday July 20th .

Ian O'Riordan

Ian O'Riordan

Ian O'Riordan is an Irish Times sports journalist writing on athletics