Fionnuala Britton’s Gold was obviously the highlight of the 18th SPAR European Cross Country Championships from an Irish viewpoint but there were some other noteworthy performances too.
In the Men’s Senior Race, Joe Sweeney (DSD AC) produced a gutsy performance to finish fifth overall in a race which was dominated by Atelaw Bekele of Belgium. The Dublin man was in the chasing group throughout the race and in the latter stages moved up to second position before drifting back to fifth. The Men’s team finished sixth overall with Paul Pollock greatly contributing to this with a fine debut performance at these championships finishing 26th.
In the U23 Women’s race Sarah Louise Treacy was the best of the rest of the Irish finishing 18th overall her best ever placing yet at these championships. While Una Britton sister to Fionnuala was 38th in her debut run at these championships. In the Men’s U23 race Michael Mulhare who was part of last year’s Gold winning team was unfortunate to be spiked and lose his shoe in the opening 1km. This hampered the Laois man’s performance and he could only manage 31st position after targeting a top 10 finish.
Jake Byrne was solid throughout the Men’s Junior race finishing in 23rd place while in the Junior girls the best performance in this young team was Siofra Clerigh Buttner who finished in 49th place.