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Paralympic Sports: Cycling

Colin Lynch makes history with first Para cycling UCI Hour Record

The Irishman managed a distance of 43.133km to beat the previous best by more than 2km. 03 Oct 2016
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Colin Lynch

Colin Lynch

ⒸColin Lynch
By UCI

"That was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It was near-perfect for the first 40 minutes but the last 20 minutes is where it really starts to hurt. With about 5 minutes to go I knew I was going to beat the record and was hanging on to make sure I set a strong new mark."

The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has congratulated Ireland’s Colin Lynch for establishing the first ever officially sanctioned UCI Hour Record for Para cycling, since its regulations were extended to the discipline in 2016. The mark of 43.133 km was achieved on Saturday (1 October) at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester, Great Britain.

The Irishman bettered by more than 2 km the World Best Performance set by France’s Laurent Thirionet in 1999, in the C2 category.

Colin Lynch, a 45-year-old specialist in endurance, is finishing the season on a high, after a successful year that included a silver medal in the road time trial at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

Since making his international debut in Para cycling in 2010, Lynch has become an accomplished athlete with two world titles: in the road time trial in Roskilde, Denmark, in 2011 and the 3km individual pursuit in Los Angeles, USA, in 2012.

Commenting on Saturday’s performance which marks the start of a new era for the UCI Hour Record Colin Lynch said: “That was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It was near-perfect for the first 40 minutes but the last 20 minutes is where it really starts to hurt. With about 5 minutes to go I knew I was going to beat the record and was hanging on to make sure I set a strong new mark.

“It’s been an amazing year for me and this was the perfect way to cap it off. I hope the record will stand for a while now, but also hope this will start other para-cycling riders in all categories to test the record books.

“I want to thank the UCI and my Federation (Cycling Ireland) for backing me in this attempt. I am now looking forward to some time off – and then coming back next year to try and win the World Championships Time Trial one more time!”

UCI President Brian Cookson added: “Congratulations to Colin for putting in a great performance and establishing a record that will stand in history as the first ever Para cycling UCI Hour Record. Colin had great success at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games and today’s achievement comes as icing on the cake. I’m sure he will be an inspiration for many other riders to take on this iconic record.”