Ciara Mageean kicked-off her 2019 indoor season in blistering form, as she set a new Irish Indoor Mile record, with a time of 4:28.31.
Competing at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston, widely regarded as one of the top professional indoor track meets in the world, Mageean finished sixth in a large 15-woman field.
The Portaferry runner beat the likes of the 2013 World Indoor silver medallist Brenda Martinez and reigning World 3000 metre steeplechase gold medallist Emma Coburn, with her superb run. Canada’s Gabriela Stafford won the race in a world-leading time of 4:24.80 – also a new Canadian indoor record.
Mageean’s new Irish record improves on her own previous record of 4:28.40, which she set three years ago at the Millrose Games in New York.
This time set by Mageean is comfortably inside the 1500m qualification time (4.36 Mile) required for the European Indoor Championships, which takes place in Glasgow from March 2nd.
The New Balance Indoor Grand Prix meet is the first stop of the 2019 IAAF World Indoor Tour. Mageean will take huge encouragement from her first indoor race of the season coming off a hard training camp in Murcia, Spain.
Earlier on Saturday, Ireland’s fastest woman Phil Healy, moved to the top of the European indoor 400m rankings after a sublime win in Vienna, with a time of 52.31.
Healy who is the first Irish athlete in 40 years to hold both the 100m and 200m records at the same time, opened her indoor season with victory at the Vienna International Indoor Meet.
The Cork sprinter finished comfortably ahead of Netherlands’ Lisanne de Witte and Great Britain’s Eilidh Doyle. De Witte is the current European outdoor Bronze Medallist whilst Doyle is a 2018 Bronze World Indoor Medallist.
It’s early in the indoor season but Healy’s time is now the fastest recorded time of the year in Europe and the second fastest in the world. She will be hoping to carry on her promising form ahead of the European Indoor Athletics Championships in March.
Healy enjoyed a phenomenal 2018 season with her coach Shane McCormack as she beat the Irish 100m with 11.28 seconds while also becoming the first Irishwoman to duck under 23 seconds for 200m, clocking 22.99.