An accomplished cyclist who has enjoyed much success on the road is taking to the track this Saturday afternoon in a landmark Irish record-setting event.
John Lynch, a rider with Murphy Surveys Kilcullen Cycling Club, will take to the outdoor velodrome at Sundrive Road in Crumlin at lunchtime this Saturday, June 13, to set an Irish marker for the derny, or paced, hour record.
On Sunday last in the UK, Bradley Wiggins broke the UCI Hour Record at Lee Valley Velopark by completing a distance of 54.526km. This was indoors and unpaced, John hopes to reach between 56km and 60km outdoors and paced.
This will be the first time it has ever been attempted in Ireland so once the 35-year-old from Kildare completes the event, he will set a new marker. Officials from Cycling Ireland will be on hand to ratify the distance he achieves. Former international rider and Rás winner Tommy Evans holds the national record for the traditional unpaced hour. He set a marker of 46.166km back in 1999.
Last month John completed his 10th Rás. Leading up to the event, he worked up to 70 hours per week and was up at 5am to fit in training. But while he is a very strong road rider who has won plenty of races, most of his success has come on the track.
In the last two years alone he has won 10 medals at the National Championships, four of them gold. He has been training behind the derny on the track in recent weeks, paced by Liam Walker, the chairman of Lynch’s Kilcullen Murphy Surveys club.
“We’ve been talking about it for a while and if nothing else, it will hopefully get a bit of interest going again in the hour record,” Liam said.
“We’ve been going to the track and doing around 1½ hours; a nice steady warm up and then maybe some 20 minute efforts at race pace. It’s also about figuring out the lines around the track because at that speed it’s all slightly different doing 56 or 58kph. We’re aiming to ride steady for the first half and then pick it up and pick it up. But steady is still 56k per hour!
“It’s also hard to get shelter off the derny in the crosswinds; you can to keep tight, not more than a couple of inches away. And you have to move around the back of it as you go around the track to maximise the shelter depending on how the breeze is hitting you.”
Anyone wishing to witness this unique effort on Saturday, should be at the track for about 12:30pm.