Sports

Records could tumble in Menís 5K

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Records could tumble in Menís 5K thumbnailReigning champion Charlie Hulson is set to return and try and defend his 5K title this Thursday evening.

SUCH is the strength in depth of the 2017 Brooks Men's 5K line-up, the organisers are quietly confident that David Nightingale's eight year old record could fall this Thursday evening in the Cathedral City.

American Nightingale blitzed the record to create history back in 2009 as he recorded a stunning time of 13.54.

Over 250 athletes from across the world have entered the race and there are at least 18 runners who have all ran 5K in under 14 minutes and well over 100 runners who have ran sub 15 minute times over the 3.107 mile distance.

However, sometimes with such a talented field like the one that is set to take to the start line at Russell Street this Thursday evening.

There is once again an international feel to the line-up with athletes from across the world signed up for the event.

2016 champion Charlie Hulson will be among the contenders once again this year and he is clearly a man for the big occasion, having won here last year and having took the English Cross-Country title back in 2015.

Another major English contender will be former European U23 Cross-Country champion, Jonny Davies, who recently recorded an excellent time of 13.23 over 5000m.

Former Polish steeplechase champions Krystian Zalewski continues a long tradition of Polish participation in Armagh and he has plenty of experience around the Armagh track and should be in with a chance of victory once again this year.

Athletics supremo Charlie Breagy has worked hard once again to ensure some of the very athletes from America will make the hop across the Atlantic and the 2017 quartet is led by Brandon Doughty who has a personal best of 13.39 over 5000m.

Their team also includes Irish athlete Shane Quinn, who attends Providence University in Rhode Island.

Shane is the son of former Irish 3000m steeplechase holder Brendan Quinn, who will be lining the street to cheer his son on.

The USA team is completed by Jonny Crain and Jordan Mann.

Matt Bergin leads the AAI Irish team and he is another athlete who has ran sub 14 minutes around this distance.

The Irish team is completed by Mark Christie, Kevin Dooney and Thomas Hayes.

There is a strong Scottish team making the journey across the Irish Sea and 1500m runner Jake Wightman will be hoping to make his mark around the Mall.

Last year Jake ran a superb 3.54.20 for the first mile, while his 1500m best of 3.35.49 puts him among some of the best 1500m athletes in the world at present.

Grant Sheldon. Derek Hawkins and Ben Stevenson complete the Scottish line-up and they have all ran sub 14 minute times for this distance.

The Welsh national team have a strong selection travelling to the Orchard county and they are led by Swansea athlete Dewi Griffiths, who has cracked the sub 14 minute mark at this distance.

English duo John Beattie and Jake Shelley will also be worth keeping an eye on, as they look to continue their good form.

The addition of the World Sprint Orienteering three day event has brought a new dimension to the Armagh programme and world champion orienteers Tim Robertson from New Zealand, Oystein Kvaal from Norway and Belgian athlete Yannick Michiels will use the 5K as a chance to sharpen up ahead of their tilt at the orienteering event.

The orienteering dimension this year also ensures a full Finnish team on the line with Arttu Vattulainen a 13.53 runner and Henri Manninen better known for the marathon where he has run 2.16.43 joined by Finnish and world orienteer Topi Raitanen.

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