Freddy Sittuk has been stripped of his title of Irish National Marathon champion after failing to meet eligibility criteria, with Gary O’Hanlon declared as the first Irish finisher across the line at the Dublin City marathon.
The Kenyan-born Raheny Shamrock runner finished fourth in Sunday’s Dublin marathon, and has been running on and off for Dublin club over the past five years.
Under the rule agreed by the delegates at the 2016 Athletics Ireland Congress, an athlete with an unbroken 6 months' residency in Ireland immediately prior to the championship, is eligible to compete for the National Championship title and medal positions.
Sittuk was confirmed as eligible by his club prior to the event, but following a meeting of the Competition Committee of Athletics Ireland, he has been stripped of the title.
It follows the receipt of information from Raheny Shamrock that Sittuk had failed to meet the required criteria for eligibility under the residency rule.
Athletics Ireland’s Competition Committee Chairman John Cronin said: "The information initially received by the association indicated that Freddy Sittuk was eligible and, therefore he was deemed champion on Sunday.
"Once we received information from the club stating that the athlete had, in fact, not met the criteria, the committee met to discuss the situation and Gary O’Hanlon has been deemed marathon champion.
"The process for confirming residency eligibility for National Championships has, up to this event, worked well but the fact that Gary was not awarded this title and his gold medal on Sunday is very regrettable.
"We do, however, look forward to presenting Gary with his Championship title and medal shortly."
O’Hanlon ran a personal best of 2:18:52 to finish 11th overall.