The pace was fast from the gun with the leaders going through 400m in 61 seconds. That early pace just could not continue and the next two laps were covered in 69 and 68 seconds respectively. The last 300m belonged to two runners with Mageean and Ethiopian Tizita Bogale pulling away from the field.
Both gave it all with Bogale edging ahead to win.
After the race she said “It’s Ireland’s first ever medal on the track. I’m so happy. I’m so proud. I just wanted to do it for everyone back home. And to finish with a national record I’m thrilled. I knew I was in it on the final kick. I wanted to finish strong and I have the silver.”
Mageean’s time of 4:09.51 improves on her own Irish record of 4:15.46, taking a massive 6 seconds off her previous best. Well done to Ciara on such a major achievement and to her coach Eamon Christie who has structured her training to peak at just the right time.
Athletics Ireland President Liam Hennessy was full of praise for the performance and said it must rank as one of the best achievements of an Irish athlete. It would, he said, also provide a major boost to the Irish competitors about to compete in Barcelona.
The other performance of Irish note on the final day was the gold medal win of Conor McCullough representing USA. His throw of 80.79m is a new CBP. His father was a regular member of Irish teams in the hammer and his best was 74.16m to rank fourth in the All Time Irish list.