Ireland Narrowly Miss Out in Women's Team Pursuit Qualification at World Track Championships
Ireland have narrowly missed out on qualification for the first round of the Women’s Team Pursuit after recording a strong time of 4.19.934 at the Track World Championships in Paris.
The team of Emily Kay, Lara Gillespie, Alice Sharpe and Kelly Murphy enjoyed a fast start and were placed third in the live rankings in the 1000m and 2000m splits.
And in a final push, Ireland finished fifth placed in the provisional rankings with four teams yet to race – with the top eight finishers qualifying for the first round on Thursday, October 13.
It came down to the final heat as Ireland finished just 0.815 seconds behind final qualifier the USA and 9th overall.
Despite missing out on qualification, the time came less than 0.2 seconds from breaking the Irish National Record set at the Nations Cup in Glasgow in April this year.
Ireland suffered a technical error in their initial attempt at a start but were shortly underway afterwards.
Emily Kay said:
“I think we’re both pleased and disappointed. We thought we were capable of being in the top eight, we would have liked to have qualified and got a second ride but that’s the fastest we’ve ever qualified. We've taken a step forward so it’s bittersweet.”
“Olympic qualifying is the top ten now so we’re within that and we definitely know there’s things we can change to take that step forward. We’re amongst it (the top ten in the world) and there’s a few on front of us that aren’t too far away, we can change some things and hopefully take more steps forward.”
While competing against the best in the world, the championships also serve as invaluable experience in preparing for the 2024 Olympics.
The Saint-Quentine-en-Yvelines velodrome will host the track cycling events at the Paris games, providing athletes with the chance to get to know the venue.
Lara Gillespie is back in action this evening as she competes in the Scratch Race at 6.56 pm.
Team Ireland are in competition tomorrow as Orla Walsh starts her World Championships in the early afternoon, she’ll be in Sprint Qualifying action from 1.27 pm.
Elsewhere, Alice Sharpe is back on the track as she competes in the Elimination Final at 6.57pm.
More information on this week’s schedule can be found here.
You can follow all the latest updates on the Cycling Ireland social media channels.