Ciara Mageean sets new record while Gudaf Tsegay romps home at Rieti meet
Northern Ireland’s top middle distance runner Ciara Mageean ended her track season in style yesterday when she broke her NI 1,500 metres record yet again with new figures of 4 mins 6.49 secs at the big athletics meeting in Rieti, Italy.
This is the 23-year-old Portaferry woman’s third record over the distance in three weeks and improves her previous best by .05 secs. This gets Ciara ever closer to the Rio Olympics qualification time of 4 mins 6 secs.
The signs were not promising in Rieti for yet another record as the meeting was affected by wind and rain. However Ciara settled in after the gun and followed the leaders which included world junior silver medallist Gudaf Tsegay of Ethiopia.
Five athletes including Mageean broke away on the final lap with Ciara becoming slightly detached in the home straight. However she defied the poor conditions and fought to the line to secure her fifth record this year which also included new times in the 3,000 metres and the mile.
The race was won by Tsegay in 4mins 5.17secs with Canada’s Fiona Benson of Canada who beat Mageean a few days ago securing 2nd in a PB 4.05.24.
Ciara will now take some time off following her successful season before starting her preparations next year.