WALK THIS WAY Cian McManamon is pictured in action for Ireland in the Men's 20km Walk event at the 2018 European Athletics Championships in Berlin, Germany last Friday. Pic: Sportsfile
WESTPORT’S Cian McManamon had a weekend to remember after a very respectable performance at his first ever European Championships in Berlin last Friday.
The Carrabawn native finished in 21st position in the 20k walk for Ireland with a time of 1:25:43, some three minutes behind Irish team-mate Alex White.
Speaking shortly after the race, McManamon admitted he still has much more to give.
“When you think about it, there are only 20 lads ahead of me,” the 26 year-old said. “One-by-one I’m going to have a go at them over the next few years, and I feel right now I’m nowhere near my peak and I’m improving.
“It’s 20k, you go through a lot of crises out there but I was really happy with how I acquitted myself.
“I kept pushing and pushing and hoped more lads would come back to me but I think the lead group was steady enough through 10k. So there probably wasn’t going to be as much carnage as the 50k.”
The Westport AC athlete is the son of Noel and Marian McManamon and is currently studying for a masters in Operations Management in Dublin City University.
In May, McManamon helped Ireland make history by taking a bronze medal in the European Race Walking Cup in Czech Republic alongside Wright and Robert Heffernan.
Before that, he finished in 38th place at the IAAF World Race Walking Championships in China.
Last Friday was McManamon’s first ever European Championship and although he ran his second fastest time of the year, he was already aiming for major improvements in the years ahead.
“I’m happy with my own result, 21st in Europe is nothing to complain about on my first outing,” he said. “It’s my second fastest time this year and my third fastest overall, so it’s a good performance.
“Obviously you’d want it to be better but I’m happy with how I got on and looking forward to qualifying for Doha next year and Tokyo beyond.
“After the World Cup in May, I felt I could have gone top 16 or top 12. I’ve had a turbulent time since then but I’ve worked hard since then over the past few weeks to get myself right.
“I fought as hard as I could and to be honest, it’s my first major championships. I got the best out of myself.”