Ireland’s Niamh McCarthy has won a silver medal for Ireland in the F40/41 Discus final on Day 5 of the 2016 IPC (International Paralympic Commitee) Athletics European Championships in Grosseto.
Niamh had medals on her mind from the off as, after extremely focused throwing, she set a new F41 European Record and Personal Best early on with a distance of 25.45m, before going on to break this record on her third throw with a distance of 27.05m.
In what was a mixed class event (F40 and F41) McCarthy was pipped to the gold medal by F40 Polish athlete Renata Sliwinska who won the event on points.
“That was absolutely stunning,” said an almost speechless National Throws Coach, Dave Sweeny. “A truly stunning performance from Niamh. She smashed her PB to smithereens, and it really was unfortunate that she lost out on gold by points in the mixed class event.
“She is thrilled now to have thrown so well, and remained focused throughout. It was an absolutely incredible performance and moves her well up the world rankings. We’ve had a fantastic few days now with everyone throwing extremely well. They all did really well in Doha at the World Championships and have all moved up a level again from that again. It’s been amazing to watch.”
Elsewhere, T13 athlete Greta Streimikyte also made the podium on her European Championship debut when she secured bronze in the final of the T13 1,500m. Streimikyte finished in a fantastic time of 4.54.25 to scoop bronze behind Russia’s Elena Pautova in first, and Spain’s Izaskum in second.
Speaking after Greta’s performance, Para-Athletics Team Leader James Nolan stated: “I’m delighted that Greta raced so well in her first major championships. The confidence and experience she has gained from this Championships will stand to her in the coming years.
“She is very proud to represent Ireland and she did so with distinction.”
These were Ireland’s fourth and fifth medals of the Championships, with Deirdre Mongan winning bronze on Day 1, followed by Cork athletes Noelle Lenihan (who also set a World Record) and Orla Barry each scooping gold on Day 2 and 3 respectively.
Ireland’s Conor McIlveen and Lorraine Regan will be in action on Thursday (June 16th) on the final day of the Championships.
The Irish para-athletic team is proudly sponsored by Allianz, an official partner of Paralympics Ireland.