At the All Ireland Senior Track and Field Championships in Santry Stadium, Dublin last weekend Kelly Proper of Ferrybank AC (pictured) was in sparkling form and had a brilliant double, almost making it a treble.
On Saturday she had the longest jump of her career in winning and retaining the Long Jump Championship title with a leap of 6.68 metres, something which she did twice during the course of the competition but due to the strong following wind on both occasions her jump could not be ratified as a new Irish record which she of course holds herself.
Kelly has now won the Long Jump title for the past four years. She then competed in the 200 metres final on Saturday and again retained her title in a time of 24.34 seconds, with her clubmate Niamh Whelan second in 24.68. The two also met in the 100 metres final and Kelly finished second here, being beaten by the narrowest on margins by Ailis McSweeney; to give an idea of how close it was McSweeney was timed at 12.20 seconds and Kelly at 12.21 and Niamh Whelan was third in 12.31.
Two more athletes from Waterford won bronze medals and both were juniors. Billy Ryan Ferrybank, having won his heat of the 400 metres on Saturday in 49.51 seconds, was then into the final on Sunday where he ran a fine race to finish third in a personal best time of 48.29 seconds. Lisa Houlihan was third in the Pole Vault with 2.80 metres.
West Waterford athlete James Ledingham reached the final of the 800 metres and finished seventh in 1 minute 52.60 seconds.