HomeSportsCiara Mageean’s 1500m gold an ‘iconic moment in Irish sports history’

Ciara Mageean’s 1500m gold an ‘iconic moment in Irish sports history’


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Ciara Mageean’s 1500m gold medal at the European Athletics Championships has been hailed as an “iconic moment in Irish sports history,’ by a former world champion.

The middle-distance runner from County Down stormed home in a time of 4:04.66 at the final in Rome yesterday, her first gold medal in the competition after taking bronze in 2016 and silver in 2022.

Mageean told the press after the race that she was “ecstatic” and that “nothing comes close” to this moment in her career.

On The Hard Shoulder today, Eamonn Coghlan, who won gold in the 5,000m for Ireland at the 1983 World Championships, said it was an amazing performance by Mageean.

“It’s absolutely fantastic, I’m really buzzing, and what an iconic moment in Irish sports history,” he said.

“Along with the great commentary from Greg [Allen], it will go down in history, along with the 4x400m mixed relay gold.

“They are fantastic moments for Irish athletics and fantastic moments for Irish sports.”

Ciara Mageean’s ‘experience over youth’

Mr Coghlan said he was “concerned” near the end of the race when Mageean appeared to be boxed in, but it was a case of “experience over youth” that saw her prevail.

“She came into this event in super shape; she was strong, she was fast from her 800m running and she was ranked number one going in there,” he said.

“More importantly, she wanted this win more than anybody else out there; she held her cool, held her nerve.

“You always find, coming off a last turn, gaps are invariably going to open and when that gap opened, she just took advantage of it and blasted right through to a fantastic, fantastic win.”

Ciara Mageean crossing the finish line in Rome yesterday. Image: AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino

He said Mageean is in contention for a medal at the Olympics in Paris this August.

“Ciara has been a winner all her life but would have been disappointed with silver and bronze medals and the fact that she’s got this gold now, she’s really only getting going in the season and has nothing to lose,” he said.

“I think she’s going to go there really fresh mentally and physically; I think she can get into the final and can she get a medal?

“They will be looking at her as much as she’s looking at the others, so I’ll be confident in her doing well.”

Also taking part in the final was Dubliner Sarah Healy who placed seventh.

It’s Ireland’s second goal medal at the European Athletics Championships, following victory in the 4x400m mixed relay on Friday night.

You can listen back here:

Main image: Ciara Mageean with her 1500m European Athletics Championship gold meal. Credit: Michael Kappeler/dpa/Alamy Live News

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