Pena books Olympic spot

Finn Valley pole vaulter Tori Pena has booked her place at this summer’s Olympic Games in London.

Finn Valley pole vaulter Tori Pena has booked her place at this summer’s Olympic Games in London.

The Calfornia based athlete, who has been chasing qualification in recent months, finally made it on Saturday night when winning the Beach Track and Field Classic, at Cerritos College, California.

She won the event with a jump of 4.50 metres and in the process also set a new Irish record before subsequently going close to clear 4.60 metres in later jumps.

“It’s fantastic for Tori to have won the event and made the qualification. That has been her goal all along. I’m delighted for her and all at Finn Valley are delighted for her,” said Patsy McGonagle, Irish Athletics team manager and Finn Valley coach.

“She is a very dedicated athlete and I have no doubt that she will put her head down now and work really hard over the next few months in the build up to the games.”

Pena, who hails from California, with family ties to Derry, joined Finn Valley last year and now joins badminton player Chloe Magee from Raphoe, on the Irish team plane to London.

Meanwhile another Finn Valley athlete was making waves again over the weekend with Sarah Collins’s victory at the Swiss Junior Cross Country Championship on Sunday afternoon. Her first place finish rounds off a great seven days for the Basel based 17-year-old having won the National Cross Junior Championship in Santry the previous Sunday.