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Mayo native Sinéad Diver smashes course record and personal best to win Melbourne marathon

Diver became the second-fastest Irish female marathon runner of all time this morning.

Image: AAP/PA Images

MAYO’S SINÉAD DIVER has won the Melbourne marathon, breaking the course record and shaving six minutes off her previous best to become the second-fastest ever Irish-born woman over the marathon distance.

Diver, who moved to Australia in 2002, now represents her adopted homeland, but her Melbourne course record time of 2:25:19 sees her move to within less than three minutes of Catherina McKiernan’s 2:22:23 — set two decades ago — in the all-time Irish rankings.

Her run was also the fourth-fastest in Australian history, and also the fourth-fastest ever on Australian soil — only the three medalists at the 2000 Sydney Olympics were faster.

Diver, who was the favourite to take home the AUS $20,000 prize money, doubled her earnings by breaking the course record previously held by Lisa Weightman (2:26.05 in 2013).

The 41-year-old IT consultant started running in 2010 after the birth of her eldest son.

Now a mother of two, Diver still harbours aspirations of representing Ireland and wore green, white and orange nail polish while running for Australia at the 2015 World Championships in Beijing.

She also lined out in Aussie colours in London two years later, and a switch of allegiance is unlikely due to Athletics Ireland’s toughening of its selection policy three years ago.

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