Record breaker Kate ready to take on the world

Dundalk’s Kate O’Connor is ready to take on the world after beginning 2023 in style with a record-breaking performance at the World Indoor Tour event in Clermont, France. The St Gerard’s A.C athlete smashed the Irish indoor pentathlon record claiming a points total of 4,396 which surpassed the previous national record set by Grace McKenzie in Birmingham in 2019. O’Connor’s score earned her third place across two days of competition in France.
Kate is better known for her exploits in the heptathlon having claimed a brilliant silver medal at the Commonwealth Games last year which was followed by a joyous homecoming last August outside her home in Belfry Gardens as proud parents Michael and Valerie and sister Maeve watched on.

Kate, who was born in Newry was representing Northern Ireland at those games and her performance in Birmingham proved that she can compete with the best in the world in the heptathlon.

A niggling injury disrupted the latter half of 2022 for Kate who was forced to miss out on the European Championships but having worked hard over the winter the former St Vincent’s student proved she is approaching something near her best form with that performance in Clermont over the weekend. Speaking after the event Kate spoke of her delight at breaking the national record while also speaking about ramping up to be ready for this summer’s World Championships in Budapest.

“It’s so nice to be healthy, back out competing with world-class girls,” O’Connor told Decathletes of Europe.
“This was my first pentathlon in three years I think and the last one I did was a bit rubbish so it was great to be out competing against some world class girls out there.

“I had a little bit of a rough end to the season last year, not being able to compete at Europeans with injury, but I’ve been training hard and I really came out here to have fun and see where I was at, and I managed to pull out a national record. We have more pentathlons planned; I can definitely get better. All the hard work was done during the winter so today was just about getting out there, shaking off any nerves and most importantly having fun.
“It was slightly annoying not getting the 4,400 points but I have a few more pentathlons pencilled in over the next few months so hopefully we can get the national record even higher. The World Championships in the summer is obviously what I’m focusing on this year and everything I do from here on in will be geared towards getting ready for those games. Today was a great first step in getting ready but the hard work will continue from here on in,” promised Kate.

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