Irvine out of the saddle

by Gazette Reporter

LUSK resident Martyn Irvine announced his retirement earlier this week after a long and successful cycling career that saw him crowned a track world champion in 2013.
That victory in the scratch race was the highlight of a superb life in the saddle that saw him be a key member on the Irish cycling team over the past 12 years, winning multiple medals at world level, including the coveted Rainbow Jersey when he became world champion which he won within half an hour of taking a silver medal in the Individual Pursuit.
Indeed, Irvine represented Ireland in European and world championships throughout his career, along with competing at the Olympic Games.
Speaking about his career and retirement, the 30-year-old said: “I have spent the best part of 12 years committed to riding my bike and focused on performing at the highest level.
“Along the way I have made some great friends and worked with some awesome people, and have made memories that will last a lifetime.
“I have competed at an Olympic Games, medalled at World Championship and European level as well as at World Cups and the Commonwealth Games.
“I’m really clear in my mind that the decision I’ve made is the right one and I hope in time I can make a positive contribution to the sport I love. For now though it’s a time for reflection and moving forward with my life off the bike.”
Paying tribute to his efforts, Brian Nugent, Cycling Ireland’s technical director, said of Irvine: “Martyn has been an integral member of the squad for over a decade now, it’s hard to remember the squad without Martyn.
“He has been here from the beginning of the project when we started out in 2006 and he has been a major driving force every step of the way ever since.
“His dedication, professionalism and passion for track cycling have pushed himself, and in recent years, our aspiring young riders to new levels. Martyn’s will to win and never say die attitude catapulted him to levels of success that 10 years ago were unthinkable in Irish track cycling.
“He paved the way for many, something that will only be seen to its full extent in the coming years. Martyn is part of our family here, and we hope to welcome him back so that he can continue to share his experience and knowledge in the future.”
Irvine added that he wanted to thank: “Cycling Ireland, Sport Ireland and Sport NI for the continued support they have given me throughout my career. Without the help from everyone at the Sport Institute of Northern Ireland and the Irish Institute of Sport, my cycling career would have ended long ago and I’m indebted to them for their help.”

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