WHEN plans were being drawn up for the 30th anniversary of Omagh Half Marathon – held this year on Saturday, April 6 – organisers promised to mark the occasion with a very special guest.
And the committee have delivered, as none other than Irish running legend Catherina McKiernan will be coming to Omagh Leisure Complex on Friday, April 5, and will also be in attendance on race day to help celebrate the landmark.
Catherina’s list of achievements have made her a legend of long distance running. A distinguished list of honours included four World Cross Country silver medals and a European Cross County gold. Catherina also won twice in one of Spain’s most prestigious events the Cross Internacional de Itálica.
She also made her mark with multiple major city marathons and still holds the Irish record of 2 hours 22 minutes to this day. Her win in the 1997 Berlin marathon was the fastest ever debut win and she followed this up with a London Marathon win in 1998. There were also marathon wins in Lisbon and Amsterdam. Catherina retired from professional athletics in 2004. She now runs workshops and courses to improves people’s fitness based around the Chi technique.
At Omagh Leisure Complex, Friday, April 5, at 6.30pm and again at 7.45pm Catherina will talk with the great Frank Grealy when those in attendance will get an insight into life as an elite athlete, her career highlights and perhaps get some hints and tips to see what continues to drive her as a coach today.
A spokesperson said: “Race pack collections will be going on at the complex through Friday evening so we hope that runners will take this opportunity to listen to a great in the sport.”