Thursday 19 September 2019

Martyn Irvine makes history by winning gold and silver at the World Championships

Ireland's Martyn Irvine poses for a photo with his gold medal
Ireland's Martyn Irvine poses for a photo with his gold medal
Ireland's Martyn Irvine competes in Minsk February 21
Ireland's Martyn Irvine
Ireland's Martyn Irvine (L) and Spain's Asier Maeztu Billelabeitia compete during the men's individual pursuit qualifying race at the 2013 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk February 21, 2013. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko (BELARUS - Tags: SPORT CYCLING)
Ireland's Martyn Irvine rides to qualify for the Gold medal final with the second fastest time in the individual pursuit on day two of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at the Minsk Arena, Minsk. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday February 21, 2013. Photo credit should read: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

Cormac Byrne

MARTYN IRVINE has made Irish cycling history by becoming the first Irishman to medal at the World Track Championships in over 100 years.

The 27-year-old from Newtownards, County Down, won his silver medal in the individual pursuit which was won by reigning champion Michael Hepburn in Minsk, Belarus. 

Irvine then superbly won the 15k men's scratch race.

Irvine took control of the race late on accelerating clear of the field with 10 of the 60 laps to go and managed to hold off his rivals in the finale to win the 15k race.

Irvine is the first Irish male competitor to win a medal at the World Cycling Championships since Harry Reynolds took the one-mile amateur title in 1896.

In 2012, Caroline Ryan won Ireland's first modern World Championships medal with bronze in the women's points race.

In the individual pursuit, Irvine's time of four minutes and 22.53 seconds was a couple of seconds down on the time he had in reaching the final.

Australian Hepburn, 21, built up a big lead and almost caught Irvine coming to the end of the 4km race.

Irvine just had time to receive his medal, change his race numbers and return to the bike before his gold success in the scratch race.

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