BALLINEEN Olympian Phil Healy was back at Bandon Athletics Club to present medals to the stars of the future this afternoon, after a big welcome home in west Cork yesterday evening.
Phil turned up at the sports day of Bandon Athletics Club on Sunday where she was welcomed enthusiastically by her club mates.
Chairman Patrick McSweeney said the club was very proud of Phil’s achievements in Tokyo, adding: “It is a fantastic achievement.”
He said she was in demand at the event to present medals to winners of the events at the sports day.
Last Tuesday, she barely missed out on a place in the Women’s 400m semi finals after finishing fourth in her heat, just one place from securing an automatic place.
She was also just 0.07 seconds from qualifying on times.
A day earlier, she produced a Season’s Best performance of 23.21 to finish fifth in her 200m heat.
She made history by being the first Irish woman to take part in three track and field events at one Olympic Games, and she and her team in the 4X400 mixed relay came in 8th overall in the games.
Yesterday evening, Phil, who has been dubbed the Ballineen Bullet, was welcomed to Bandon by the County Mayor, Cllr Gillian Coughlan, and met fans in the town.
She was then paraded through the twin villages of Enniskeane and Ballineen in an open top car, watched by family, friends, and fans. She had a tricolour in her hand and smiled and waved to fans as she was driven through the two villages. She also mingled with fans after the drive through, including outside the Olympic Tavern, which was named in honour of 1932 Olympic gold medal winner Bob Tisdall.
The villages were bedecked in bunting as well as the Irish and Olympic flags for the homecoming occasion.
Margaret O’Donovan of Ballineen and Enniskeane Tidy Towns Committee said: “We are very very proud of Phil. It is a wonderful achievement and she is a wonderful role model for our young people.” She added: “We are immensely proud of her. It means a lot to the twin villages of Ballineen and Enniskeane. We salute and congratulate Phil on her achievement. It is wonderful and uplifting in these times to have a local lady represent us so well.”
During the Olympics, her home villages were festooned with posters by local businesses and individuals wishing her well.