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- Irish Blindsports Athletes hopeful of Qualification
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Irish blind and vision impaired athletes performed well at the international competition in Tunisia, chasing qualification standards for the World Championships next year. Amanda Crotty was the star of the trip managing to win her B2 1,500m race in a fantastic PB time and securing a B standard. The only male member of the team, 15-year-old Tony Stafford from Wexford, a young man with great promise, came home with 2 silver medals. He is tantalizingly close to reaching the B qualifying Standard for the men’s B3 long Jump. Ailish Dunne and Nadine Lattimore took part in the B1 Shot Putt. Ailish won a bronze and Nadine was 4th. Nadine’s preparation for the event was upset by a disagreement over the use of an audible signal from her guide but she still performed admirably and at the recent AAI National Championships on July 10th she recovered sufficiently to finish ahead of Ailish. These two ladies are likely to be head-to-head in competition for selection to the paralympic team when this comes around.
Jason Smyth, from Co. Derry, who is current world and paralympic champion, moved a step closer to achieving his dream of qualifying for both the Olympics and Paralympics at London in 2012. He has secured qualification for the European Championships in Barcelona and the commonwealth Games in Delhi in October. Jason recently recorded a PB for 100m of 10.32sec, which is inside the qualifying time for the European Championships in Barcelona. IBS wish Jason well in his quest to become the first visually-impaired male athlete to compete in both the Olympics and Paralympics
Paralympic cyclist Catherine Walsh has once more put Ireland on the podium at the UCI Paracycling Road World Cup in Segovia, Spain. Catherine and her pilot Fran Meehan won the Silver Medal in Sunday’s Individual Time Trial. In spite of having some mechanical problems with their chain, they finished a very credible 8th in Saturday’s Road Race.
Michael Delaney, with pilot Con Collis, and Andrew Fitzgerald, with pilot Paul Giblin, both had mechanical problems in the road race. Delaney’s chain broke ending their race and Fitzgerald managed to struggle to the end, finishing in 18th place — despite a broken saddle. In the Time Trial, Michael and Con finishing in 14th place and Andy and Paul finishing in 20th place. Irish Manager Denis Toomey said this is just the start the squad needed in their effort to secure valuable ranking points for London 2012 qualification. It’s now onto the 2010 UCI Road World Championships in Canada in August.
Recreational Tandem Cycling
Saron Dunne, a director of Irish Blind Sport, has agreed to co-ordinate some dates for cycling over the coming months. People who are interested need to provide their own tandem and, ideally, their own pilot. Each team should be self-sufficient and carry a repair kit, as IBS cannot guarantee a support vehicle. IBS will try to facilitate people interested in finding a voluntary pilot for the cycles which will be recreational rather than competitive, so they should appeal to all ages and abilities. The dates will be posted as soon as available.
You can email Sharon at: email@example.com or alternatively email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.