Letterkenny Athletic Club’s Ciaran Doherty was crowned world masters indoor 3000 metre champion in Jyväskylä, Finland on Friday night.
The talented west Donegal fisherman struck gold in a time of 8:37.45 – less than half a second second quicker that the fast-finishing runner-up, Fabrice Thiery from France, who clocked 8:38.00, while Spain’s Fidel Ruiz was third with 8:41.52,
Speaking after the race, Doherty said he was absolutely delighted at his latest achievement. “It was a really competitive race and I knew quite a number of my competitors had run faster than me,” he said.
After getting out fast from the gun, Doherty settled in to a steady rhythm early on inside the stadium. He was content to sit between fifth and sixth position in the middle part of the race and found himself being continuously clipped by the bunch.
He made a controlled move at the start of the last kilometre for home. He ran his final kilometre in 2:41, passing a number of runners over the closing stages to clinch gold.
“I’m so happy that my training has paid off and that I got things right tactically. I gave it 100 per cent, I had nothing more to give, so I really couldn’t be happier,” said Doherty, who was accompanied on the trip by his father, Joseph.
His success in Finland adds to his 3k steeplechase outdoor masters title in Sacramento last year, along with his bronze medal from national seniors in July.
Giving her reaction to the victory, Letterkenny AC coach, Teresa McDaid, said it was just reward for Doherty, who, she stressed, had trained extremely hard over the last number of months.
“This result is another great boost for everyone involved with Letterkenny Athletic Club, and indeed for everyone in sport in Donegal,” she said.
It’s been an eventful time for Doherty - just last month he got engaged to Finn Valley AC’s leading female middle distance runner, Theresa McGloin.