What the Irish & British papers said about Martyn Irvine’s World Champs gold & silver

Posted on: February 22nd, 2013

The Irish Times front page


Above is The Irish Times front page from today, with an exhausted but beaming Martyn Irvine punching the air. Below, we’ve given you a round-up of what some of the Irish and British newspapers said about his gold and silver medal winning rides at the World Championships in Minsk yesterday.


The Examiner – Brian Canty

The success of Irvine, who was signed by second-tier road team United Health Care late last year, is all the more remarkable as Ireland’s overall annual budget is in the region of €100,000, something which pales into insignificance in comparison to their neighbours across the Irish Sea.
Irvine said: “I’ve been racing with them (Britain) for two or three years now. It’s some set-up. That put fire in my belly to do the best I could with the little I had,” he added.


Belfast Telegraph

Ireland’s Martyn Irvine claimed two medals in an hour – the second of them gold in the men’s scratch race – at the Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk.

The 27-year-old from Newtownards was second in the four-kilometre individual pursuit and had time to receive his medal, change his race numbers and return to the bike before his gold success.

Irvine accelerated clear of the field with 10 laps to go of the 60-lap (15km) race and held off his rivals in the finale to win.


The Irish Times – Shane Stokes

One hundred and seventeen years after Harry Reynolds took gold in the one mile amateur sprint in Copenhagen, Martyn Irvine grabbed what is only Ireland’s second World Championship track title in history with a scintillating display in the velodrome in Minsk, Belarus.

The 27-year-old rider from Newtownards attacked 10 laps from the end of the 60 lap, 15 kilometre scratch race, got a gap and then held off those chasing frantically behind.

While Irvine’s ride was spectacular in itself, and had many of the crowd in the velodrome on their feet as he tried to hold off the hard-chasing bunch behind, it was even more impressive considering he had taken silver in the individual pursuit less than an hour beforehand.


The Irish Independent – Gerard Cromwell

Martyn Irvine gave Ireland its first track cycling world title since Harry Reynolds claimed the One-Mile Amateur Championship of the World in Denmark in 1896 when he won the 15km scratch world title in Minsk, Belarus.

After a 117-year wait for an Irishman to win a medal on the modern velodrome, Irvine’s gold-medal ride yesterday was all the more spectacular as it came just half an hour after he took a silver medal in the individual pursuit on the same track.


The Independent (UK) Matt Majendie

Ireland’s Martyn Irvine made history as the first Irishman since Harry Reynolds in 1896 to win a world track title for his country in a remarkable hour of racing for the 27-year-old. First, he took silver in the individual pursuit behind Australia’s Michael Hepburn before digging deep to win the 15km scratch race. The result was all the more impressive as the Irish mainland does not possess an indoor velodrome.

Irvine, who has been training with the British team but on a shoestring budget, said: “It’s some set-up. It put fire in my belly to do the best I could with the little I had. I’ll guarantee I’m one of the least-funded guys on the podium. That makes it even sweeter.”


The Guardian (UK) – William Fotheringham

The dominant individual on Thursday was Ireland’s Martyn Irvine, who gave his country its best day at any cycling world championships with a silver in the pursuit followed with a gold in the scratch race – a tribute to his drive and determination given that his country has little funding and no indoor velodrome – as well as an extra fillip on the day it was confirmed that Belfast will host the Giro d’Italia start in 2014.


The Times (UK) – Owen Slot

The biggest sensation of the day’s racing came wrapped in green. It is 117 years since an Irish man laid claim to a medal of any kind at this level, but Martyn Irvine, a 27-year-old from Newtownards, Co Down, won silver in the individual pursuit and, an hour later, got back on his bike for the 15km scratch race and won gold.