Ulster Cycling News
31Aug/120

Irish Paralympians Going Well in London

Men's Tandem Narrowly Miss out on Bronze in the 4km Pursuit - In what was the race of the day at the Velodrome in the Olympic and Paralympic Park, the tandem pairing of James Brown and his pilot Damien Shaw narrowly missed out on the Bronze medal in a race that saw the lead change several times throughout the 4km competition.

Brown and Shaw qualified for the Bronze medal ride-off in the Men's Individual B 4km Pursuit, in a National Record time of 4.25.557. While came to London as World silver medallists in this event, the competition was always going to be tough, with two Australian bikes racing, one were the World Champions, the other the World Record holders. In the qualifiers the in-form Spanish qualified as the third fastest bike, just ahead of the Irish.

In the Bronze medal ride off the Spaniards set the pace early on, leading the Irish by just .4 second. The Irish put on a push approaching the halfway mark, and reversed the lead. Coming into the second last lap the lead reversed again when Spain took a massive push to secure the Bronze medal.
After the race the disappointed Irish duo, who left everything on the track, spoke about their disappointment. They were aware they were up during the race and did everything they could to hang on to the lead. Referring to the fact that they have only been together since January, Brown said "we will improve with more time together, we are racing against full-time professional bike riders whilst holding down a business and jobs. If we get a chance to spend more time training together on a full-time basis we will no doubt build on these results".

Four bikes will be in action tomorrow, starting with two Irish entries in the Women's Individual B 1km TT at 9.30 am. World Champions over 3km, Catherine Walsh and Fran Meehan, will test their speed along with the recent successful pairing of Katie-George Dunlevy and Sandra Fitzgerald who have been going from strength to strength since they first raced together earlier this year.
Enda Smyth will be in action again tomorrow in the 3km Pursuit Time Trial, along with World Champion Colin Lynch who races in the C2 category. Lynch will be looking to add a Paralympic Title to his World Title in the pursuit.
Irish Individual C3 cyclists smashes Irish record, finishes in 16th Position
Competing in his second Paralympic Games, Enda Smyth smashed his own National Record by almost two seconds in the Men's Individual C1-2-3 1km race against the clock. The Dublin cyclist left the gates fast, and was lying in bronze medal position for much of the competition.

Recovering from a recent broken elbow, Smyth has made a remarkable recovery to come back to competition in the form of his life within two months. However, in what is a highly competitive event, with three categories racing for one set of medals, Smyth finished in 16th position overall, being the 7th C3 category rider.
Winner Zhang Yu Li (CHN) broke the C1 world record in an adjusted time of 1.05.021 and actual time of 1.13.009.Mark Lee Colbourne from  Great Britain won the silver with Germany's Tobias Graf taking the bronze in an adjusted time of 1.09.979. The actual time was 1.15.858 which is a World Record in the C2 category .
In a recent change in categorising in Paracycling riders are divided into 5 categories, which contain both amputees and cerebral palsy riders. Previously they raced in separate events. With categories C1, C2 and C3 racing in the same competition, times are adjusted by factored percentages to ensure the competition is fair.
Enda Smyth will be in action again tomorrow in the 3km Pursuit Time Trial, along with World Champion Colin Lynch who races in the C2 category. Lynch will be looking to add a Paralympic Title to his World Title in the pursuit. Also in action will the two women's tandems in the 1km Time Trial. World Champions over 3km, Catherine Walsh and Fran Meehan, will be racing at 9.30am, along with the recent successful pairing of Katie-George Dunlevy and Sandra Fitzgerald who have been going from strength to strength since they first raced together earlier this year.

Friday 31st August:
Women's Individual B 3km Pursuit
9.30 am

1.       Catherine Walsh (Stoker) and Fran Meehan (Pilot)

2.       Katie-George Dunlevy (Stoker) and Sandra Fitzgerald (Pilot)
11am Colin Lynch 3km Pursuit Qualifier
11.40am Enda Smyth 3km Pursuit Qualifier

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