Home Athletics Rhasidat Adeleke: Dubliner sets new Irish 400m record in sensational NCAA triumph

Rhasidat Adeleke: Dubliner sets new Irish 400m record in sensational NCAA triumph

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Rhasidat Adeleke NCAA Victory

Rhasidat Adeleke outperformed highly-favoured Britton Wilson, securing the first Irish win in the NCAA tests since 2006.

Rhasidat Adeleke, an accomplished Irish sprinter, elevated her standing to 20th in the global women’s 400m record, as she clinched the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) title in the United States.

At just 20 years old, Adeleke broke her own Irish record by 0.34 seconds in Texas, finishing first with an impressive 49.20 seconds.

Britton Wilson, a star US athlete, entered the final as the strong favourite but had to concede the top spot to Adeleke, finishing second with a time of 49.64 seconds.

Adeleke’s victory marks her as the first Irish winner of the NCAAs since 2006.

The previous win by an Irish athlete in the renowned US collegiate championships was a 5,000m victory by Sligo’s Mary Cullen, 17 years ago.

Despite Wilson’s current ranking as second in this year’s global lineup, following Dominican Republic athlete Marileidy Paulino, she couldn’t beat her season’s and personal best of 49.13, as she was overtaken by Adeleke in the final 50 meters.

Wilson’s ambition to score a double victory at the championships in the 400m and 400m hurdles was shattered when she ended up in a disappointing seventh place in the hurdles with a time of 55.92 seconds, lagging 1.47 seconds behind the winner, Savannah Sutherland.

‘I simply relied on myself,’ Adeleke reflects.

Not only was Adeleke the first Irish sprinter to win an NCAA title, but she also contributed to her University of Texas team’s gold medal win in the 4x100m relay.

Adeleke described her 400m victory as being “somewhat of a blur”. “I simply trusted myself,” the athlete from Tallaght explained. She credits her success to her powerful finishing kick, which has been a consistent strength throughout the season.

Adeleke’s collegiate victory strengthens the speculation that she might be a strong medal contender in this year’s World Championships in August.

Adeleke was a semi-finalist in the 400m at the previous year’s World Championships in Oregon and secured a fifth-place finish over the same distance a month later at the European Championships in Munich.

However, the championships weren’t as successful for all Irish athletes. Sophie O’Sullivan, another Irish runner, placed last in the 1500m final with a time of 4:22.81. Despite being the fastest qualifier in Thursday’s heats with a time of 4:09.58, the daughter of famed Irish athlete Sonia O’Sullivan, couldn’t replicate her earlier success, finishing more than 14 seconds behind the winner, Maia Ramsden from Harvard.

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Mike J. June 11, 2023 - 3:40 pm

Wow, adeleke is truly killing it! didn’t even know about her till now. Guess it’s time to start following athletics more.

Ciara O'Donnell June 11, 2023 - 3:40 pm

Big congrats to Rhasidat, she’s a real inspiration. Can’t wait to see what she does at the World Championships.

John D. June 11, 2023 - 3:40 pm

Who’d have thought? A new star in Irish athletics, breaking records n all. Just shows what dedication n talent can do.

Fiona Mc. June 11, 2023 - 3:40 pm

Adeleke’s on fire! Setting new records, winning titles…what’s next? world championships are gonna be exciting.


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