PHIL Healy wants to sign off her season with a bang this Sunday as she looks to complete a 100m and 200m double at the Irish national championships.
The Ballineen bullet won the women’s 100m national senior title last Sunday in Santry to win the 11th national senior title of a glittering career.
Racing into a strong headwind, Bandon AC superstar Healy won the final in 11.71 with her sister Joan finishing third in 11.85 – Sarah Lavin of Emerald AC won silver – to bring two medals home to Ballineen.
While she is the national 100m record holder Phil (25) hasn’t race in this event at the senior nationals for a number of years. Instead, she has focussed on the 200m, but with the national championships split over two weekends this year she took the opportunity to dip her toes into the 100m again.
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‘For sprinting you want a favourable wind but not too much at the same time – but we were running into a headwind which isn’t what you want,’ she told the Star Sport Podcast this week as she reflected on her latest national title.
‘I was nervous for the heat because I hadn’t raced since the first weekend in March so there were cobwebs and everyone that I was up against had raced this season. The heat was about blowing off the cobwebs and it felt really good so I had that boost going into the final, knowing that I was able to put it up to the other girls.
‘For the final I felt that I didn’t get out (of the blocks) very well. Again conditions weren’t ideal, I left it late to come through. I had raced the 60m indoors and I knew these girls always get away from me at the start. I knew if I trusted my drive phase and held my composure then I would come through – and that comes with experience too. It was about staying relaxed.’
Healy’s attention now is on completing a sprint double by defending her national outdoor 200m title this Sunday, again in Santry.
‘All the hard work is done, there will be two or three sessions this week. Usually we would be training six days a week with double sessions in there as well but it’s about tapering off and recovering from Sunday to be ready for next weekend,’ she explained.
One down, one to go for the queen of Irish sprinting.