Ian Egan Reflects on the Peak of His Running Career in 2002

April 04, 2024

In an exclusive interview with Run Republic, Ian Egan, a seasoned runner, reminisced about the pinnacle of his running journey back in 2002. With vivid recollections, Egan took us through a remarkable series of races that defined a period of peak performance and passion for the sport.

The journey began on March 3rd, 2002, as Egan logged 53 miles for the week before heading to Quilty, Co Clare, for the annual 4-mile road race. Despite battling a head cold, he crossed the finish line in 21.11, securing the 8th position in a race organised by James Sexton and the Kilmurry Ibrickane AC crew.

Undeterred by illness, Egan's determination soared as he tackled the Ballycotton 10 the following week. Running "outta [his] skin," he finished 20th in 54.15, setting a new personal best in what he describes as the "best 10-mile race on the British Isles and Ireland" at the time.

Continuing his impressive streak, Egan conquered the Tubbercurry 10k on St. Patrick's Day, clinching the 3rd position with a time of 33.30, rounding off a rigorous 66-mile week. As March came to a close, Egan marked his calendar for the renowned Dunboyne 4-mile race, where he clocked a remarkable 20.54 despite arriving late, securing the 27th spot in a field of seasoned runners.

With March yielding an impressive 245 miles, Egan charged into April with unwavering determination, logging a staggering 78 miles in the first week alone. The subsequent weeks saw him navigating through challenges, including the national 10k in Navan, where he crossed paths with legendary runner Dick Hooper and finished 17th with a time of 32.41.

However, it was the week ending April 21st, 2002, that left a mark on Egan's memory. Racing in Kilnaboy, Co Clare, he recalls a day where he dug deep, battling against formidable competition. Despite his best efforts, he finished 2nd in 54.17 to Cathal O Connell of St Finbars AC, a moment he still holds with pride.

Reflecting on this period of his life, Egan acknowledges the intensity of his racing block, admitting that while he wouldn't recommend it to others, there was an innocence and purity in his approach. Free from the inundation of internet advice, he listened to his body and lived and breathed running.

As Egan looked back on his peak performance in 2002, he offered a lighthearted query to anyone who may hold the secret to reclaiming youth. Through his story, he not only shares a glimpse into his extraordinary journey but also underscores the timeless allure of running and the enduring spirit of those who lace up their shoes and chase their dreams, one stride at a time.

Stay tuned to Run Republic as we have many more stories like this one to come!