Three Irish athletes break four minutes for the indoor mile

Molly Scott becomes the fastest Irish women indoors

Keeping alive the tradition of successful milers racing indoors in America, Brian Fay was one of three Irish athletes to break four minutes this weekend, if not all exactly where expected, improving his best by over three seconds to 3:55.14.

Competing for the University of Washington on the over-sized track of 300m, the Raheny runner is now eighth fastest on the Irish all-time indoor list, improving on his outdoor best of 3:58.91 run last summer, and the fastest indoor mile by any Irish athlete in nine years.

At the 114th Millrose Games in New York, the second stop on the Word Indoor Tour, Andrew Coscoran was looking to continue the Irish impact on the famed Wanamaker Mile.

After committing himself early, Coscoran faded over the closing laps, clocking 4:03.81 in 12th, victory going to the Australian Ollie Hoare in an Oceanian indoor record of 3:50.83. That race was also marked by New Zealand's Nick Willis running a sub-four mile for a remarkable 20th successive year, as he clocked 3:59.71 in ninth.

Earlier in the invitation mile, Luke McCann from UCD finished second in 3:58.21, behind the American Shane Streich, who ran a personal best of 3:57.98.

McCann also broke four minutes outdoors last summer, running 3:56.93. Cork’s Charlie O’Donovan, Racing for Villanova at University Park in Pennsylvania, also ran another sub-four with his 3:57.46, improving on 3:58.95 he clocked two years ago.

At the Irish intervarsities indoor championships in Athlone, Molly Scott took sole possession of the title Ireland's fastest women indoors. The Carlow athlete and law student first equalled the Irish senior indoor record of 7.27 seconds, which stood to Amy Foster, before bettering in the final, clocking 7.23. Israel Olatunde also maintained his excellent form, winning his first men's 60m title with UCD with another sub-6.70 clocking, this time running 6.66.

On the roads, the Axa Raheny five-mile road race returned after last year’s pandemic absence and saw Fionnuala McCormack again underline her timeless dominance, the Kilcoole AC runner winning the women’s race in 27:32.

Sorcha Nic Dhomhnaill of Donore Harriers took second in 27:48. Efrem Gidey from Clonliffe Harriers made a welcome return from a spell on injury to win the men's race in 24:41, ahead of Ryan Creech of Leevale, who ran 24:46.