Murray seizes gold, Briggs silver in Para Cycling Track World Championships
- Paralympian #222 Nicole Murray has claimed the title of World Champion with a gold medal in the C5 Scratch Race.
- World Championships debutant Devon Briggs seized silver in the C4 1000m Time Trial.
It has been a phenomenal night for New Zealand at the Para Cycling World Championships in Paris with a gold and a silver medal win bringing NZ’s tally to four, with another day of racing to come.
Donning the rainbow jersey for the first time is Paralympian #222 Nicole Murray, who won gold for the 10km Scratch Race. 13 competitors raced simultaneously, using every ounce of speed and strategy to be the first to complete 40 laps.
Murray, who is a left-hand amputee following a childhood accident, has ‘never had a worthwhile placing’ in a scratch race before. She explained that working with one of her role models contributed to the win.
“Crystal Lane-Wright (UK) and I stayed away from the bunch. We worked together really well. She’s someone I’ve always looked up to. To be able to do some race-winning moves with her is pretty incredible.”
Murray’s success was soon followed up with a silver medal for Para athlete Devon Briggs in the 1000m Time Trial. 18-year-old Briggs has never competed outside Oceania before this trip to Paris, and is thrilled with winning a medal on his first World Championships.
“I’m blown away. To come to my first ever World Champs and medal is just amazing. The kilo was not a target event. I was not expecting to do as well as I did.”
Meanwhile in the rest of the 5-strong team, New Zealand Para athletes made their competition work hard for the wins – with two 4th place finishes and a 7th.
Paralympian #213 Sarah Ellington (C2) qualified in third place for the Individual Pursuit but lost out to Daniela Carolina Munevar Florez of Colombia in the final.
Paralympian #225 Anna Taylor (C4) came 4th in the 10km Scratch Race, in an agonisingly close sprint finish.
Para athlete Nick Blincoe (C4) just missed out on a top 6 placing in the Time Trial qualifiers, finishing 7th.
Racing continues tomorrow with events for Briggs, Blincoe and Ellington, including the Team Sprint.
About the 2022 Para Cycling Track World Championships
The 2022 Para Cycling Track World Championships are being held in Velodrome Saint Quentin en Yvelines, near Paris. The Velodrome Saint Quentin en Yvelines is also the venue for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. 230 Para athletes from 39 nations are competing – a record number of nations.
What do the classifications mean in Para cycling?
- Classification groups Para cyclists with an eligible impairment into sports classes, according to how much their impairment affects their ability to carry out the fundamental activities in their sport.
- Para athletes who are able to use a standard bicycle (with approved adaptations) compete in the five sport classes C1-5.
- Sport class C1 is allocated to athletes with the most severe activity limitation, while the sport class C5 is allocated to athletes with minimum impairments.
- The C1-5 sport classes include athletes with limb deficiency, impaired muscle power or range of motion and impairments affecting co-ordination, such as uncoordinated movements and involuntary movements.