The 123.ie National Masters Indoor Track and Field Championship took place in the TUS International Arena in Athlone on Saturday 13th for athletes from 35 years up to 80 plus. Competition for medals in the various categories was hotly contested. It was great to see these athletes to really stretch their might and muscle to vie for places on the podium. North Sligo AC had 5 athletes competing in these championships, the biggest number ever with two of them taking part in two events.
The first athlete from the club in action was Marita McMorrow competing in the 1500m over 45 category, this was her very first indoor race and she showed great grit determination and composer as she powered to a great time of 5 min 23 sec to finish 3rd in very good quality field to win bronze, her very first individual national medal.
Peter Gallagher was the next club member in action in the over 40 in 1500m section. Gallagher ran a fine race and just nicked under his indoor PB for the distance to finish 5th in 4 min 34 sec.
Eamon Murphy was next club member in action when he ran in the over 55 in 1500m, the experienced Murphy set a fast pace from the start and tried to burn off his main rival and national champion Michael Counsel from Trim AC. Murphy held the lead until the last bend when the Meath man went into overdrive to retain his national title in 4 min 39 sec with Murphy taking silver less than two seconds later in 4 mins 41 sec, and Conor Fleming from Clonmel taking the bronze in 5 min 26 sec.
Murphy was in action a few hours later in the over 55 800m it was in this category that former Olympian from the Atlanta Olympics Shane Healy got sustained applause when he broke the over 55 world record by 3 seconds to take gold in 2 mins 2 seconds a phenomenal achievment, Murphy took silver in 2 min 16 secs and John O Gorman from Killmurray North Clare AC 3rd in 2 mins 17 secs.
Michael Carney was next in action in the over 70 in 1500m, the defending champion from last year had to settle for silver this time in 5 min 56 sec twelve seconds slower than his winning time from 2023 with Brian McGrath from Le Cheile AC taking gold in 5 min 52sec and George Maybury from Cloniffe Harriers winning bronze in 6 min 30 sec.
Trish Lee ran in the over 50 800m. This was a very competitive and high standard race in which Lee gave it her all to finish 4th in 2 min 43 sec, Lee showed great stamina and resilience by running a very good race in the 3k less than 40 mins later to win the bronze medal in 11 min 54 secs.