Joanne Cuddihy (28) competes for Kilkenny City Harriers.

She is the Irish 400 metres outdoor women's record holder with a time of 50.73 seconds.

At the 2003 World Championships in Athletics held in Paris, France, Cuddihy qualified for the final of the 400 metres with a time of 53.68 seconds.

She participated in the 2004 Irish National Indoor Championships in Belfast, Northern Ireland, where she won the 400 metres in a new all-comers record of 53.50 seconds over Moushaumi Robinson.

As a result of her win, she was automatically selected to be part of thr Irish team for the 2004 IAAF World Indoor Championships held the following month.[10] At the championships, Cuddihy finished sixth in her heat of the 400 metres, failing to progress further.

At the 2005 World University Games, Cuddihy made it to the semi-finals of the 400 metres, but failed to progress further after finishing fifth.

At the 2006 European Athletics Championships in Gothenburg, Cuddihy qualified for the semi-finals of the 400 metres by running a time of 51.41 seconds to finish second in her heat. She then qualified for the final by finishing third in her semi-final, and setting a personal best time of 51.09 seconds.

In April 2007 Cuddihy moved to Los Angeles in the United States for specialised coaching with Dan Pfaff.

Cuddihy competed at the 2007 World Championships in Athletics in Osaka, Japan that August. She ran a season's best in the heats to qualify for the semi-finals with a third-place finish.

In the semi-finals she recorded a personal best time of 50.73 seconds, setting a new Irish national record and making her the first Irish woman to have run under 51 seconds at 400 metres. Despite this, she did not qualify for the final.

Her new Irish record also qualified her to compete in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

Despite a persistent knee injury, she competed in the heats of the 400 metres at the Beijing Games, but was unable to qualify for the semi-finals.

She stated that competing in the Olympics "would have been a dream come true if [she] wasn't injured".

Cuddihy did not participate in the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, as she had taken time out to focus on her academic studies.

At the 2010 European Athletics Championships in Barcelona, Spain, Cuddihy made the semi-finals, but was unable to make the final after finishing fourth in her semi-final and missing a fastest loser position.

Cuddihy competed at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea in the 400 metres after securing the B-standard qualifying time.She came third in her heat, qualifying for the semi-finals with a time of 51.82 seconds. During the semi-finals however, Cuddihy was disqualified after a false start.

First in Olympic action on 3 August in the heats. Start time is 10am.