Pauline Curley was all smiles after finishing the women’s marathon in 63rd place with a time of 2:47:16.
“This was a real fairytale ending for me,” Pauline said. “The whole experience of getting a late selection for Beijing- having my mother,my husband Adrian and our son Emmet here, as well as so many of my extended family and friends from Tullamore Harreirs has been such a joy,” she said.
“I went down to the Bird’s Nest on Friday night to see Roisin McGettigan and Fionnuala Britton compete and I cried with sheer joy for my good fortune. I am so happy and pleased that I ran my own race and I finished in a respectable time. I say to everybody- hang on to your dream, because dreams can come true. I know that now because it has happened to me and I am so full of gratitude for all these good things that have happened for me. Work hard and good things can happen for you too.”Ireland's Roisin McGettigan finished a disappointing 14th with a time of 9:55.89 in the 3,000m steeplechase final.
McGettigan struggled with the world record-breaking pace set by Russian Gulnara Galkina-Samitova who became the first women to break nine minutes for the event. Eunice Jepkorir of Kenya won the silver and Russia's Ekaterina Volkova the bronze. Russia has been accused of "systematic doping" before these Games, with seven athletes suspended, but these two - so far- have come up clean.
Derval O’Rourke trailed home sixth in her 100m hurdles heat with a time of 13.22. Starting in lane eight, an unusually tense O'Rourke was false started at the first attempt and faded after 50 metres when the race finally got underway.
In the second heat of the 400m hurdles, Michelle Carey was seventh in 57.99.