IRISH ATHLETICS RECEIVED a pre-Olympics boost in the early hours of Sunday morning as Aileen Morrison captured second place at the Ishigaki ITU World Cup.
Morrison entered the competition in Asia confident that she could compete at the highest levels in all three disciplines of swimming, cycling and running.
A strong start in the water was just over 18 minutes and a smooth transition onto the bike consolidated her early hold on second spot.
She dropped back slightly after the 40 kilometre cycling section but played her tactics right, briefly battling with Canada’s Sarah-Anne Brault, and finished a strong runner to scythe through the field. Morrison said:
I wasn’t in a good position coming out of (the second stage) but I took it nice and steady and tried to catch up. (Brault and I) were playing tactics a little bit and it was a case of sheltering from the wind and seeing who would do more work.
The Derry athlete had enough strength in her legs to stretch past all but one leader for her second podium finish of the season.
“I’m pleased with silver,” she added. “Obviously a little disappointed I couldn’t have a chance at the gold but Kathy had an amazing race and she ran really well so fair play to her.”