/ Athletics

Britton sixth in Spain

Updated: Monday, 14 Nov 2011 15:12

Fionnuala Britton - wAS NAMED Irish Endurance Athlete of the Year at the Atheltics National Athletics Awards
Fionnuala Britton - wAS NAMED Irish Endurance Athlete of the Year at the Atheltics National Athletics Awards

Fionnuala Britton of Kicoole AC ran a very impressive season opener to finish sixth in the very competitive VIII Cross de Atapuerca in Burgos, Spain on Sunday.

The race was won by former World 10,000m champion and multiple World Cross medallist Linet Masai, with Britton the first European across the line when completing the 7.8km course in 25:32.00 minutes.

This is ideal preparation for the Wicklow woman for the upcoming European Cross-Country Championships in Slovenia next month, an event she finished fourth in last year.

To top off a great weekend for Britton, she was also awarded the Irish Endurance Athlete of the Year at the Atheltics National Athletics Awards in Santry on Saturday evening.

Kerry Harty finished 22nd in the same race, while Michael Mulhare was the best of the Irish in the men's race when finishing 34th.

The McCain UK Cross Challenge in Bristol also saw a strong Irish representation, with World Youth Walk champion Kate Veale (West Waterford) switching to the cross-country and finishing a very encouraging third in the Junior women's race.

She was strongly backed up by Mary Mulhare (North Laois) and Emma Mitchell (Banbridge) in sixth and 10th respectively.

Liam Brady (Tullamore) was the best of the four Irish top ten finishers in the Junior men's race when finishing an encouraging second. Stephan Kerr (Armagh) fourth, Kevin Dooney (Raheny Shamrocks) fifth, and Sean Tobin (Clonmel) ninth, rounded off a very strong event for the young Irish team.

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