Field athlete Jim Gillespie earned a superb European silver medal and national record in his latest outing.
Jim was competing in the European Hammer Decathlon Championships in Derby which began badly for the Wragby sportsman, with poor throws in the 10kg and 12.5kg hammers, leaving him in fifth place.
But the tide began to turn when he produced a personal best in the 15.88kg event, throwing a distance of 6.71m.
The fourth event, the 19.05kg hammer, saw him go close to a second PB with a throw of 4.65m, followed by a personal best of 3.82m with the 25.4kg implement.
That took him up to fourth and he was soon in third place after the 4kg hammer event where he set another personal best of 29.42m, and the 5kg event where he produced a season’s best of 27.00m.
A throw of 24.32m with the 6kg hammer closed the gap on the second-placed athlete.
By this time Gillespie was in top form as he moved into the final two events.
There he recorded personal bests in the 7.26kg and 9kg, throwing 21.20m and 14.74m respectively, to move into the silver medal position, leap-frogging multiple world champion Clive Howell in the process.
He finished just behind winner Martin Roberts with a final points score of 3,335 which was a new Irish national record.
He said: “I am extremely pleased with this performance, especially as I started so badly.
“This will give me a real boost as I move into the hard winter training, with plenty of heavy lifting and work on honing my technique to be done.”