10 Aug 2022

WATCH: 'I held my breath' - Thomas Barr's mammy reacts to son's historic European medal win

Waterford athlete Thomas Barr's mother Martina has described how she held her breath for the entire race as her son sprinted to a European bronze medal in Berlin on Thursday evening.

The Ferrybank man made history as he became the first Irish man to win a medal in a sprint event at the European Championships when he claimed bronze in the 400m hurdles.

Olympian Barr started in lane 8 in Thursday's final and had the reigning world champion, Norway's Karsten Warholm for competition. His mother described to David Gillick for RTE Sport how she felt she had "an outer body experience" as the race unfolded.

She said she noticed the spring in his step as he emerged for the final and described her sheer pride as he crossed the line as a European medallist. You can watch her interview, along with her daughter and athlete Jessie Barr, at the top of this article. 

On the track, hopes had diminished for Barr claiming a medal as he qualified as the seventh fastest at the semi final stage. However, he made a fast start in the final and rounding the final bend he had just been pipped third place. 

With his typically strong finish, the Ferrybank man powered over the line for a bronze.

Warholm claimed the gold medal while Turkey's Yasmani Copello grabbed silver. The 1-2-3 was a replica of the semi final result from which Barr qualified for the final. 

He becomes just the sixth Irish athlete ever to claim a bronze medal on the track at European Championships.


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