Sarah Flanagan (centre) with Ireland teammates Michelle Kenny (left) and Sophie Daly.

Midlands athlete represents Ireland in France

Tullamore Harriers athlete Sarah Flanagan competed in the European Athletics Off-Road Running Championships in France recently.

Moate native Sarah was part a large Irish contingent who travelled to France for the championships which took place during the recent June bank holiday.

Held in Annecy, in the French Alps, the event combined trail and mountain running with some very challenging sections in all races. Despite expectations of sunshine and warm weather, the athletes faced rainy conditions, resulting in slippery terrain.

Over the course of three days, the athletes competed in various races, including uphill, ultra, and trail events.

Sarah and the Irish senior ladies team participated in the 'Up and Down' race, which covered a 16km course from Menton-St Bernard to Annecy, featuring a climb of 900 metres.

Despite the challenging, underfoot conditions, Sarah had a great run finishing in 46th position overall and the first Irish woman with a time of 1:40:56. Her teammates Michelle Kenny and Sophie Daly finished 50th and 51st respectively, contributing to a 10th place team finish for Ireland.