Athletics Ireland has announced that for the first time they will be sending a team to compete in the European Marathon Cup at the European Track and Field Championships in Zurich in August. Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders AC) will lead the men’s team and Nicola Duncan (Galway City Harriers AC) will lead the women’s team.
The Marathon Cup is a team marathon competition run in conjunction with the European championships Marathon with the results based on the national team’s three fastest finishers.
Pollock will be joined by Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham WSAF), Tomas Frazier (St Malachy’s AC) and Kevin Seward (St Malachy’s AC). The members of the Irish women’s team include Maria McCambridge (Dundrum South Dublin AC), Barbara Sanchez (Clonliffe Harriers AC)and Clare McCarthy (Leevale AC).
National Endurance Coach Chris Jones said “It is a big step forward for us to be sending teams to compete in the men’s and women’s marathon cup competition at the European Championships. We have worked closely with the marathon mission squad to ensure that our eight athletes will be competitive in Zurich.”
In preparation for Zurich, Pollock has produced a number of encouraging performances lately including a half marathon personal best of62.09 at the World Half Marathon Championships in March. He also ran an impressive time of 28.32.18 for 10,000m at the Payton Jordon Invitational Meeting in California last weekend which was inside the standard for the 10k for the European Championships (28.35)
Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham WSAF) is the current national marathon champion and will be joined by road race specialist Frazier and Seward to make up a strong men’s team in Zurich.
There was heartbreak for Duncan at the World Half Marathon Championships when she was forced to pull out due to injury. However she bounced back in spectacular fashion when she ran a stunning new personal best of 2.33.28 in the London Marathon on April 13th. She is joined on the Irish women’s team by Maria McCambridge (Dundrum South Dublin AC), Barbara Sanchez (Clonliffe Harriers AC) andClare McCarthy (Leevale AC).
McCambridge is the 2014 Irish marathon champion and has represented Ireland to the very highest level on the roads, track and cross country over the last decade. McCarthy finished second in the Dublin Marathon last October and Sanchez is coming off a fifth place finish in the Seville Marathon in February.
European Championships Marathon Team Selection
Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders AC) Coach: Andy Hobdell
Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham AC) Dick Hooper
Thomas Frazer (St Malachy’s AC) Tony Houchin
Kevin Seaward (St Malachy’s AC)
Nicola Duncan (Galway City Harriers AC) Coach: Nick Anderson
Barbara Sanchez (Clonliffe Harriers AC) Sebastien Locteau
Maria Cambridge (Dundrum South Dublin AC)
Claire McCarthy (Leevale AC) Donie Walsh
Qualification Standards for the European Track and Field Championships