With Ireland represented in six events at the World Track Cycling Championships this weekend, the Irish Team of Caroline Ryan, Eoin Mullen and Martyn Irvine are looking forward to stamping their mark in the Velodrome at Minsk.
For many nations this Championship event will be considered the beginning of a new Olympiad for Track Cycling.
The first cyclist to race will be Caroline Ryan, who races in the Individual Pursuit on Wednesday 20th February. National Champion in this event, Ryan has been finalising her training in Majorca over the past few months, and is aiming for a top 5 finishing position in the event. A good performance could put Ryan on the podium.
The Individual Pursuit is a 3km race against the clock. In the qualifying rounds the riders race for the fastest times which will qualify them for a medal. The two fastest times will then compete again for gold, and the third and fourth fastest will race for Bronze. At the World Championships in 2012 Ryan won a Bronze medal in the Points Race, proving her strength on the track.
Racing for Irvine will begin on Thursday with the Individual Pursuit and Scratch Race, while Mullen will race on Saturday in the Sprint. Mullen is the first ever Irish rider to qualify for the Sprint event at the World Championships. Irvine has shown his form in recent months, winning two silver medals in the Individual Pursuit and Scratch Race at the World Cup in Glasgow.
Speaking ahead of the event Track Coach Andy Sparks said “We are looking to start Day One strong. We don’t know exactly how fast the track is running, but we are looking for Caroline’s best ever result. The team of Martyn, Eoin and Caroline are in good spirits, and riding strong. We are looking forward to a good championship.”
Wednesday 20th February @12.30 Irish Time Approx:
Women’s Individual Pursuit: Caroline Ryan