Tuthill, Olatunde, and Raftery Take on Europe’s Best U23

ByEmma Porter |

A one-hour rain delay did not dampen Nicola Tuthill’s performance at the European U23 Championships in Espoo this evening (July 14th), with the 19-year-old UCD athlete claiming a memorable 4th place finish for Ireland in the Women’s Hammer Throw Final.

Tuthill’s second throw of 66.43m proved her best of the evening, continuing a brilliant run of consistent form for the young Cork athlete who only two weeks previous posted a lifetime best of 67.85m in her first senior international appearance at the European Team Championships in Poland.

Tuthill is now setting her sights on defending her national senior title at the National Senior Track and Field Championships which take place in Morton Stadium across July 29th and 30th.

Israel Olatunde (UCD AC) finished 8th in the men’s 100m final in a time of 10.44, reappearing in his second European final in twelve months following that famous night in Munich last August. Speaking after the race he said, “It feels good to be back in a European Final, a bit bittersweet to finish 8th but it’s been a great run to the final and I’m excited now to join up with the lads in the relay”.

Olatunde will now join the 4x100m relay team who will look to qualify from tomorrow’s first round scheduled for 10.42am Irish time.

Tonight’s 100m medals went the way of Jeremiah Azu (GBR) 10.05, Raphael Bouju (NED) 10.17, and Pablo Mateo (FRA) 10.18.

Jack Raftery (Donore Harriers) secured 7th place in the men’s 400m in 46 seconds flat to continue an excellent championship for the Donore athlete. Raftery endured an interrupted season with injuries and was very satisfied with posting three of his fastest four times ever including a lifetime best of 45.89PB this week.

Speaking after the race he said, “I’m delighted, it wasn’t what I wanted at the start of the year, but I’ve had a torrid time with injuries. I couldn’t run five weeks ago so a PB, European Final, and three of my four fastest runs in the space of 36 hours, I can’t be disappointed with that”.

Raftery is also part of the 4x400m team who will look to advance from tomorrow’s first round at 11.15am Irish time.

The men’s 400m medals went the way of Håvard Bentdal Ingvaldsen (NOR) 45.13, Lionel Spitz (SUI) 45.27 (PB) and Attila Molnar (HUN) 45.36.

Irish athletes look set to have their busiest day yet at these championships tomorrow, with steeplechasers Sean McGinley and James Dunne leading out the team in in the heats of the steeplechase at 8.20am Irish time.

The 1500m pair of Sarah Healy and Sophie O’Sullivan will then take to the track as they look to secure a place in Sunday’s final. Heats of the 1500m get underway from 9.15am Irish time.

Rounding out the morning session on the track will be the men’s 4×100 and 4×400 relay teams, while Ruby Millet will take to the qualifying round in the Long Jump (11.05am Irish time).

The evening session will see Ava O’Connor return for her 3,000m s/c final following her superb PB yesterday, while Anika Thompson (10,000m) and Colin Doyle (200m) will make their championship debuts.

Robert McDonnell unfortunately rolled his ankle warming up for the 100m and has not recovered sufficiently to take his place in the heats of the 200m.

All the action from Espoo is streamed live on All Athletics TV in partnership with RTE.

  • Day 2 Results HERE.
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