Top talent are on their way to compete at Belfast track

Ben Reynolds
Ben Reynolds

The Belfast International Athletics Meeting at the Mary Peters Track on Wednesday July 2 will attract the cream of English, Welsh, Scottish and Irish talent plus European and African competitors.

The invitational event organised by Athletics Northern Ireland supported by Belfast City Council is the second international on the track after the 3 million pound refurbishment.

The meeting will provide an ideal opportunity for Commonwealth hopefuls such as 800 metres star Katie Kirk and hurdler Ben Reynolds to compete against world class opposition.

John Allen the General Secretary of Athletics NI said: “Taking place just three weeks ahead of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games this meet will give local fans a chance to see world class athletes in the top arena ahead of the Games.” The Mary Peters Track is a world class standard venue that is open to the whole athletics community from children and club athletes to internationals,” he added.

Dame Mary Peters stated: “I am overjoyed that Belfast has a truly world class facility that serves both current and future generations of athletes. It will ensure athletics development in the City for many years to come.”

Names for the meeting are expected to be revealed shortly.

Meanwhile the Fairhill Ballymena 5 Miles Road Race and Fun Run is being held for the third year from Fairhill Shopping Centre on Wednesday June 4.

The event will be organised by Ballymena Town Centre Development Ltd in partnership with Ballymena Runners and is sponsored by Fairhill Shopping Centre and Tesco Express.

Natalie Jackson, Marketing and Commercial Manager at Fairhill said: “We are very proud to support the race and are looking forward to June. It has been a great event for the town encouraging people to get active and it’s all for a great cause - Fairhill’s charity of the year - NI Chest, Heart and Stroke.”

Terry Robb Chairman of BTCD added: “I have been thrilled with the success of this road race and fun run and I hope it continues to grow into an even bigger event. It will enhance the feel good factor after the visit of the Giro D’Italia.”

Last year’s race attracted 370 competitors with Keith Sheils winning from Richard Johnson and Jarlath Falls.

The Maghera 10K Road Race which starts tonight at 8 o’clock at Gort Service Station is expected to attract a big entry.