O’Mara’s tribute to Irish Mile legend Niall O’Shaughnessy
Much like George Harrison, Niall was the forgotten member of the Irish Milers club; likely because he walked away from the sport at the pinnacle of his abilities at just 24.
From Frank O'Mara, posted by Athletics Ireland
Former two-time world indoor 3000m champion Frank O'Mara has penned a wonderful tribute to Niall O'Shaughnessy who recently passed away. Frank is pictured in the far left of the main feature image when Ireland set the world record for the 4x1 Mile relay. Now read on.
Niall O’Shaughnessy died the morning of September 15 in Atlanta, Georgia. He was 59. Niall belonged to a great group of Irish middle distance runners of the 70s which included Eamonn Coghlan, John Hartnett and Ray Flynn. This group set the tone for the glory days of the 80s which were highlighted by a World Record for the 4 x 1 Mile relay set in Dublin in 1985. That time of 15:49.99 still stands as a World Record. The following year, Ireland had 8 active Milers who had run 3:55 or faster.
Niall could be considered the George Harrison of the group. He was quiet and a little distant and only stood out by his action and competitiveness when the first chord was played. He was thoughtful and deliberate and was a great friend and ally to those who knew him. Much like George Harrison, Niall was the forgotten member of the Irish Milers club; likely because he walked away from the sport at the pinnacle of his abilities at just 24.
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