Cycling Ireland’s medal tally has doubled following Lydia Gurley’s sensational bronze medal win in the Women’s Scratch Race in the third round of the UCI Track Cycling World Cup in the Alcides Nieto Patino Velodrome in Cali, Colombia in the early hours of this morning. In an aggressive race Gurley bided her time before attacking; a move that netted bronze for her in the 10km race, with gold going to USA’s Sarah Hammer, Evgeniya Romanyuta from Russia won silver. This result puts Gurley 2nd in the World Cup ranking. In the Men’s Keirin Eoin Mullen suffered a crash in the opening heat putting him out of contention for the rest of the event. The Tissot UCI Track World Cup in Cali runs from Friday 17th February to Sunday 19th February 2017.
The Scratch Race is a bunch race with the first three over the line deemed winners. The 32 year old from Athenry, Galway attacked with Hammer and Romanyuta, with the trio working well together to lap the field. Delighted with the result Gurley said:
“The race was really quick with lots of attacking. The plan was to be patient and wait for the right time to attack. When it came, David [Muntaner] told me to go; I didn’t look back and just went for it. A massive thank you goes to our coach David, literally today I was just the legs, and he was the brains.”
This is the second medal for Ireland following Mark Downey’s dominant gold medal performance on Friday night, with the atmosphere in the team growing with the results:
“Winning a medal was unbelievable. The phenomenal performances of Mark Downey and Lydia Boylan the previous day means there was a really positive feeling in the group. We come to races to compete, and not just to make up the numbers. I’d also like to say a massive thank you to everyone at Cycling Ireland for the support.”
In the Men’s Keirin Eoin Mullen suffered a setback when he crashed. His fall in the first round of the heats of the Keirin was a hard one, and resulted in a hospital trip for the Aran Islands native.
“I can’t remember exactly how it happened, but I went to the hospital for an X-Ray on my ribs, but it’s all good.”
This is the third round of the Tissot UCI Track Cycling World Cup Series, and the Irish team have been in top form throughout; with four medals and thirty three top ten results since the track season started last October. Both Lydia Gurley and Eoin Mullen are in action again today, with Gurley competing in the 20km Points Race and Mullen in the Sprint. Mark Downey will once again team up with Felix English for the 30km Madison. Competition started on Friday 17th February and continues to Sunday 19th February 2017.