Celtic Games Report

Coscoran smashes Celtic Games 3000m record: Andrew Coscoran (Star of the Sea AC) competing in this year’s Celtic Games International T&F Championships held in the Arias Stadium, Colwyn Bay, Wales smashed the U18 boy’s 3000m record set by Callum Hawkins (Scotland) in 2009 by 8 seconds last Saturday when winning in a time of 8mins 32.49secs. Coscoran the reigning All Ireland U18 boys 1500 and 3000m champion went into the race with a best of 8mins 48secs for the seven and a half lap race from his All Ireland win two weeks ago. However since then he had also posted a 3min 55sec time for the 1500m so he was an athlete on form and ready to challenge Jack Hopkins (Wales) and Euan Gillham (Scotland) both of whom had posted sub 8min 30sec times for the event.

The race started with guest athlete Christian Lovett (Carmarthen Harriers) taking out the lead. Initially Andrew followed him but then half way round the first lap eased back to sit with Jack Hopkins and Euan Gillham. By the end of two laps this trio had eased passed Lovett with Hopkins and Gillham setting the pace and Andrew tucked in behind them. As the race progressed the Welsh athlete spurred on by the home support moved to the front and pushed on the pace. Andrew then eased by Gillham and settled just in behind the Welshman. As the pair open up a big gap on the other two athletes it was obvious that they were going to post a fast time. While the Welshman looked very comfortable with three laps he was still unable to shake off Coscoran’s challenge.

Then as they came into the finishing straight for the third last time with 900m to go Andrew suddenly passed the Welshman and as they crossed the line with two laps remaining he had opened up a lead of a couple of metres. As they raced down the back straight the Star of the Sea athlete continued to pile on the pressure and continued lengthen his lead. Taking the bell in around 7mins 25secs the crowd knew that there was a record in the offing. Spurred on by the Irish team and supporters present Andrew kept pushing the pace. As he came off the final bend he looked over his shoulder to check where the opposition was and then raced on to cross the line in a time of 8mins 32.49secs smashing the four year old record.

Fellow Meath athlete Harry Purcell (Trim AC) competing in the U18 boys 800m also broke Celtic Games 800m record held by Mark English when easily winning his race in a time of 1min 52.72secs. He led from gun to tape and at no time did any of the other athletes challenge him. He then anchored the U18 boy’s relay team home. After receiving the batton 20m behing the Scottish athlete he ran a great final leg in the U18 boy’s 4*400m relay so that when coming up the final straight it looked like he might catch the Scottish athlete who was visibly tiring but alas in the end he just had too much work to do and had to be content with second place.

Shannon Sheehy and Elizabeth Moreland both from Cushinstown AC were on the U16 Team for the Games. Shannon competing in the 80m hurdles finished 3rd and Elizabeth in the high jump where she was the joint winner with the Scottish girl.