Thomas Barr was named as the Athlete of the Year at the Irish Life Health National Athletics Awards which took place in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown yesterday.
Barr got the top honour with his magnificent bronze medal in the 400m hurdles at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin last summer.
This also saw him collect the Track and Field Athlete of the Year award holding off quality opposition in Phil Healy who was named inspirational performance for her 200m record exploits at the Cork City Sports, and European finalist Leon Reid and Ciara Mageean.
Sommer Lecky was named U20 Athlete of year. She soared to a sensational silver medal in the High Jump with a national U20 record of 1.90m at the IAAF World U20 Athletics Championships in Tampere, Finland.
The championships also saw the silver medal-winning exploits of the U20 women’s 4x100m relay team. The relay squad of Molly Scott, Gina Akpe-Moses, Ciara Neville, Patience Jumbo-Gula and Rhasidat Adeleke (Tallaght) were named team of the year.
Mary Purcell was inducted into the Hall of Fame for 2018. She was the dominant figure in women’s athletics in Ireland throughout the 1970s.
While the Irish Life Health National Athletics Awards is a celebration of the many successes of international and national athletes it also commemorates the association’s volunteer base. Paddy Marley was named as the Lifetime Achievement Award recipient – the pinnacle volunteer award while Sean Callan won the Outstanding Official of the Year. Both stalwarts of Clonliffe Harriers, they are very popular people on the athletics scene.
Frank Greally, editor of the Irish Runner magazine for over 30 years was a very warmly welcomed recipient of the Special Recognition Award for contribution to athletics.
“Irish Life Health is delighted to once again support the National Athletics Awards,” said Liz Rowen, Head of Marketing for Irish Life Health.
“These awards give us the opportunity to celebrate the achievements of Ireland’s athletes, as well as recognising the contribution from the athletics community in what has been an outstanding and exciting year for the sport.”
Here are all the Awards winners from what has been a special year.
Hall of Fame: Mary Purcell
Lifetime Services to Athletics: Paddy Marley
Athlete of the Year: Thomas Barr (Ferrybank)
Endurance Athlete of the Year: Alex Wright (Leevale)
U20 Athlete of the Year: Sommer Lecky (Finn Valley)
U23 Athlete of the Year: Matthew Behan (Crusaders)
Track & Field Athlete of the Year: Thomas Barr (Ferrybank)
Performance Club of the Year: Clonliffe Harriers
Services to Coaching: Eamon Harvey
Official of the Year: Sean Callan
Team of the Year: Women’s U20 4x100m Relay Team
Inspirational Performance of the Year on Irish Soil: Phil Healy
Development Club of the Year: West Waterford A.C.
Mountain Runner of the Year: Sarah McCormack (Clonliffe Harriers)
Master Athlete of the Year: Joe Gough (West Waterford)
Ultra-Athlete of the Year: Aidan Hogan (Rising Sun)
Schools Athlete of the Year: Sarah Healy (Holy Child Killiney/Blackrock), Aaron Sexton (Bangor Grammar/North Down)
University Athlete of the Year: Elizabeth Morland (DCU/Cushinstown)
Special Recognition Award: Frank Greally
Thomas Barr is managed by Sport for Business Member Galvin Sports Management
Image Credit: Eoin Noonan Sportsfile