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Saturday 3 December 2016

Irvine career comes to end

Former world champion brings curtain down due to 'frustration'

Martyn Irvine celebrates winning gold in the scratch race at the 2013 World Track Championships.
Martyn Irvine celebrates winning gold in the scratch race at the 2013 World Track Championships.

Former world champion Martyn Irvine has announced his retirement from cycling.

The 30-year-old from Newtownards, represented Ireland and won medals at European, Commonwealth and world events.

The pinnacle was a scratch race gold at the 2013 Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk.

Irvine wrote on his blog: "As I sit here here now typing this it just feels right.

"I'm retiring from international competition. I was trying my best to not use the word 'retiring' but it's probably what's happening to me."

Irvine had an outside chance of performing well at the Rio Olympics, but has been hampered by injuries sustained in crashes in recent seasons and decided enough is enough.

"It just feels like a natural end," Irvine added. "For the last year I've been racing and underperforming across the board.

"Frustration has been setting in all year and I'm sick of just turning up to bike races.

"I set my own bar by winning seven medals in a row. World Championship, European, World Cup and Commonwealth Games medals all hang up in my house somewhere.

"At the time, every single one of them was taken for granted. I never appreciated how cool it was to be winning medals.

"Since then I've just stopped winning and stopped enjoying it."

Brian Nugent, Cycling Ireland's Technical Director said: "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 driving force every step of the way ever since.

"His dedication, professionalism and passion for track cycling has pushed himself, and our aspiring young riders to new levels. Martyn's will to win and attitude catapulted him to levels of success that ten years ago was unthinkable in Irish track cycling."

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