A full house turned out in Athlone last night to witness six new stadium records and star attractions Ashton Eaton, Brianne Theisen-Eaton and Tabarie Henry live up to their reputations.
The Olympic decathlon gold medalist and world champion Eaton won the 60m in a new stadium record at the AIT International Arena Grand Prix, with a time of 6.69.
The American could only manage third, however, in the long jump.
Eaton’s wife Brianne Theisen-Eaton won the high jump with 1.80m and the shot put with a throw of 13.46m, a new personal best for the world heptathlon silver medalist.
In the much-anticipated Senator Eamonn Coghlan Mile, Kilkenny’s Eoin Everard came home first in 4.03.08, narrowly missing out on the first sub-four minute mile at an Irish indoor venue
Joe Warne and Cameron Boyek finished second and third in times of 4.04.04 and 4.04.40 respectively.
Tabarie Henry, the three-time World finalist in the 400m, proved his worth in the Athlone venue coming home in a time of 46.81.
Timmy Crowe finished a close second, however, also achieving a new PB with 47.29.
In the men’s 60m hurdles British athlete Alex Al Ameen set a new stadium record, romping home in 7.97; while in the women’s 60m hurdles, Portugal’s Eva Vital also set a new stadium record of 8.29 secs.
Waterford’s Kelly Proper added to her growing reputation and her haul of medals winning the 60m (7.44) and the long jump (6.49m), the latter a new stadium record.
There was a new record too in the men’s long jump, set by Daniel Bramble with 7.71m.
The sixth new stadium record was set by the Scottish sprinter Diane Ramsay in the women’s 400m, winning in a time of 53.87 secs.
In the opening event of the night British athlete, Ross Millington, claimed the 3000m.
AIT president, Prof. Ciarán Ó Catháin, said that he was “delighted” with the success of the event.
“There was a fantastic atmosphere in the arena this evening, with people really looking forward to some wonderful competition, which is exactly what they experienced," he said.
"This grand prix is part of a three-year development plan for the AIT International Arena and we are confident that in 2015 and 2016, it will become an eagerly anticipated fixture in the international athletics calendar.”