John Laste National Champion, Bernard O Neill has a silver lining day

Clonmel AC were well represented at the National Masters Track and Field Championships in Santry today. John Laste competed in the 5000m Walk championships over 55. Going into this event John was well prepared as he was focussed on this event for the past couple of months. Especially after he set a PB over 5000m in Tuam in June when finishing in 31 mins 48 secs. Over the next 10 weeks he applied himself to a training plan devised along with his coach Frank lynch and the twice weekly track session. As part of his training plan, he walked the Coillte 10k in early July in 55 mins 48 secs and setting a new PB along the way. This performance gave him a great boost as it showed that his training was going well. His next event was the Munster Championships in late July. Here he was competing over 3000m when winning in a very good time of 17 mins 14 secs and another PB. His last race was the British masters 3k Track Championships in Derby recently and there he once again produced the good when finishing 2nd in a new PB of 17 mins 49.22 secs. Back to last Sunday and once the race started John put in his customary surge and went with the early pace. Over the next 12 laps he kept the tempo strong and was well in the mix as the race unfolded. While conditions were warm this didn’t deter John as he set about executing his plan, no doubt practiced many a day along the Blueway. He maintained this strong effort to come home a very worthy and convincing National over 55 5000m Walk Champion in a new Personal Best of 29 mins 29.7 secs, a massive improvement on his Tuam performance back in June that started the whole process off. This was a brilliant performance by John and a well-deserved reward for his dedication to the Sport. John also finds time to train our Seniors twice a week and is always available to give great advice to Club members.

Bernard O Neill, no stranger to competing at the National Masters Track and Field Championships also had a brilliant Championships.  Competing in the over 70, Bernard got off to a flying start in the 100m, out of the blocks like a bullet he powered his way down the finishing straight, only to be caught on the line, still a fantastic performance by Bernard on winning the silver medal in 15.52 secs. Then later in the day he competed in the 200m. Here he put in a brilliant effort around the bend and kept the pace going to edge out the 100m Champion and win the silver medal in a very good time of 33.20 secs.