Who is he? The Corkman had been training solidly in no less a venue than Nike’s high-performance centre in Portland, Oregon. Which would explain his accent becoming a weird hybrid, like a young Eddie O’Sullivan.
Since May, he has switched base 130 miles down the road to the Oregaon Track Club.
Road to London: O’Lionaird achieved the Olympic A standard with a year to spare when he sliced six seconds of his personal best with a 3.34.46 in World Championship qualifying.
However, a quick time does not guarantee funding. O’Lionaird, who studied literature while in college in the US, has been forced to appeal to investors to help his medal bid by sponsoring him and bolstering his €20,000 pa grant.
What he says about himself: “I’m competing for myself, but I’m also competing for Ireland. It’s not just me when I’m out there for a run on my own, I’ve got the support of thousands of people as well. It’s a great source of motivation and inspiration.”
What they’re saying on the internet: “Holy crap. No Irish athlete has ran that fast in years. I’ll be honest I thought he would be doing very well to run 3.36-37 this year. This is major news. Brilliant.” (The Road Runner – Boards.ie)
Medal chances? Unfortunately; two Kenyans (David Rudisha and Asbel Kiprop) look likely to battle it out for gold and silver between themselves.
His personal best would have put him milliseconds outside of the medals in Beijing. However, in last year’s World Championhsips he came in in tenth and is in the midst of an uphill struggle to regain full speed after an Achilles injury earlier this year.
Still, Jimmy reckons three. A fighting chance.
If you meet him in a bar, ask him… what’s the deal with the mullet he sported last year?
On the Twitter: We could have sworn that he used to call himself @MadLen, but he’s become more focused now and it’s just @GoCiaran. And, when he’s not sprinting his little legs off, he’s checking how many pounds he has shed and whether he can wear obscenely tight clothes without buttons flying across the room. Easy ladies.
If he was a YouTube video he’d be… this talking dog, just because we think his accent’s kinda funny.
YouTube credit: gardea23