Performance Round Up – December

Catch up on the latest results of Team Ireland athletes throughout the month of December!

Daniel Wiffen Smashes The Oldest Swimming World Record

Ireland’s Daniel Wiffen had the swim of his life on Sunday, smashing the oldest World swimming record on the books in the 800m Freestyle Final at the European Aquatics Short Course Championships in Otopeni, Romania. Wiffen, the European Record (7:25.96) holder, took almost three seconds off Australian legend Grant Hackett’s 2008 time of 7:23.42, touching the wall in an incredible 7:20.46. Hackett had in fact first owned the World Record since August 2001, two weeks after Daniel was born.

Rhys McClenaghan | RTE Sportsperson of The Year 2023

Gymnast Rhys McClenaghan has been named the RTÉ Sport Sportsperson of the Year for 2023.

The Antrim man won the gold medal in the pommel horse event at the 2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships, and claimed his second European Championship pommel horse gold in a memorable year.

“I can’t believe I’m holding this in my hands! It’s amazing,” McClenaghan said.

“It’s just incredible that I’m an Irish gymnast taking home world titles and that’s never been done before. I’m so proud to be able to do that. I want to thank all of all of the nominees for this award for inspiring me and every Irish athlete at the highest level in this country it’s incredible from Johnny’s beautiful leadership for the Irish rugby team to Katie’s undeniable success in the boxing ring and leaving a legacy unmatched is inspiring for me so I want to thank all those athletes.”

Fionnuala McCormack Hits Paris 2024 Marathon Qualifying Time in Valencia

Marathon runner Fionnuala McCormack has become the first Irishwoman to hit the qualifying time f0r the Paris 2024 Olympic games after running 2:26.19 at the Valencia Marathon.

The 39-year-old Wicklow woman was over half a minute inside the Olympic qualifying time of 2:26.50 which will put her in the mix for selection in Paris next summer.

McCormack competed in her first Games in Beijing in 2008 where she was 10th in the 3,000m. She followed that up in London four years later whee she competed in the 10,000m and 5,000m, before then taking on the marathon at Rio in 2016 and Japan at the Covid-delayed 2021 Games.

Rugby Sevens Men’s & Women’s Teams Get Their Season Up and Running

In the Women’s, Ìreland finished 7th overall in Cape Town thanks to a final flourish against GB7s as Béibhinn Parsons’ 50th HSBC SVNS Series try clinched a play-off win.

In the Men’s, a fourth place finish in Cape Town was enough to leave Ireland Men 5th overall in the HSBC SVNS after two rounds.


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