Irish Rio marathon qualification picture unchanged after London race

Thomas Frazer
Thomas Frazer was just over a minute and a half outside his marathon personal best

Ireland's Rio Olympics marathon selection picture appears unchanged after events in London on Sunday.

Kevin Seaward (2:14:52), Mick Clohisey (2:15:10) and Sergiu Ciobanu (2:15:17) remain the three fastest Irish male qualifiers after Sunday's London race.

Sean Hehir clocked 2:17.20 on Sunday with Belfast man Thomas Frazer finishing in 2:19.17 and Stephen Scullion posting 2:20.39.

Breege Connolly's remains Ireland's third fastest women's qualifier.

Claire Gibbons McCarthy looked on course to challenge North Belfast athlete Connolly's time of 2:37.29 set in London last year but eventually dropped out around the 35 kilometre mark.

Hehir and Frazer also looked capable of forcing their way into the Olympic picture as they went to half way in 1:06:35 and 1:06.54 but both lost ground in the closing miles.

Belfast runner Seaward and Ciobanu set their times in Berlin last September.

Northern Ireland woman Laura Graham and Fionnuala Ross both produced big personal bests in London.

Graham, from the Mourne Runners club, took over eight minutes off her previous best as she crossed the line in 2:48.03 with Armagh's Fionnuala Ross taking 12 minutes off her time in Paris last year as she clocked 2:49.57.

Paul Pollock
Paul Pollock will hope that his superb World Half Marathon will sway the Irish selectors

Pollock forced out of London Marathon by foot injury

Paul Pollock is currently the fourth fastest of the Irish male Rio qualifiers but each country can only send three athletes.

Holywood man Pollock, whose ran 2:15.38 last September, had been intending to run in London but had to pull out last week because of a foot injury.

Pollock, who will resume training early next month, is now hoping that his superb World Half Marathon run in March will sway the Irish selectors.

The county Down man was 14th in Cardiff with Mo Farah the only European ahead of him.

Pollock also finished ahead of Ireland's current leading marathon qualifier Seaward at the Wokingham Half Marathon and another 10K race in recent months.

Callum Hawkins, who finished five seconds behind Pollock in at the World Half Marathon event, secured his British Olympic spot on Sunday by clocking a new personal best of 2:10.52 which left him in eighth spot.

Athletics Ireland are scheduled to pick their marathon selections on 23 May when the qualifying deadline expires.

Frazer clocked his personal best of 2:17.45 in Rotterdam last April.

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