Fionnuala Britton put in another brilliant cross country performance on Sunday, just a week after her excellent 4th place finish at the European Cross Country Championships in Portugal.
Having just missed out on the medals at the latter event, Britton turned the tables on two of the three runners who finished ahead of her at the IAAF Cross Cup event in Belgium.
The Irish competitor beat the two Portuguese athletes that were first and third in the Europeans last Sunday. Jessica Augusto and Dulce Felix (who was given the same time as Britton), finished well behind her in Sunday’s event at Park Van Laken in Brussels, when she chased home the Kenyan winner, Caroline Chepkwony who finished in 20 minutes 35 seconds.
Britton was just two seconds behind the winner with 20:37, with another Kenyan the reputable Prisca Jepleting third in 20:45, with the Euro Cross Champion Augusto only sixth and bronze medallist Felix well back in 16th place. The Belgian champion Veerle Dejaeghere was seventh in 21:00.
The Wicklow girl was thrilled with her efforts in Sunday’s race:
I suppose it’s a bit sweet to get some measure of revenge but it still does not make up for last Sunday. I suppose I was even more determined today, but to be honest from the halfway point I did not see either Augusto or Felix and I was concentrating in keeping with the Kenyan. I was still with her with a half a mile or so to go, but then just got away from me in the end. I do feel a little better now and it’s a good end to the year for me, but there are some very good races coming up in the New Year.”
Britton can now expect to be invited to the top class IAAF invitational cross country event in Edinburgh on January 6th 2011, and compete again with the very best in the world.
SENIOREN VROUWEN – SENIORS DAMES 6000m
1 CHEPKWONY CAROLINE KEN – 20.35
2 BRITTON FIONUALLA IRE 20.37
3 JEPLETING PRISCA KEN 20.45
4 BELETE ALMENSCH ETH VAC 20.46
5 CHEROTICH PURITY KEN 20.50
6 AUGUSTO JESSICA POR 20.57
7 DEJAEGHERE VEERLE BEL AVR 21.00
8 CHEMTAI ESTHER KEN 21.04
9 VANDEN BEMPT SIGRID BEL DCLA 21.06
10 SCHENKEL SANDRA BEL DCLA 21.09