Lara Gillespie claimed gold at the U23 European Track Championships on Friday, July 14th, in the points race in Anadia, Portugal.
Gillespie wins gold at U23 European Track Championships
The 22-year-old from Enniskerry, Co. Wicklow, rode extremely well picking up intermediate points in six sprints before holding off her rivals in the final sprint which awarded double points, sealing the win by seven points.
Gillespie was part of a select group of four that gained a lap on their opponents, claiming a 20 point bonus each. The points Gillespie won in the final three sprints proved decisive, outscoring her nearest rival, Maike van der Duin from the Netherlands, to finish with 49 points. Van der Duin was followed by Tetiana Yashchenko of Ukraine in third place.
Last month Gillespie was crowned elite and U23 National Champion on the road, sprinting to victory after a tough 122.6km race around the roads of Dungannon, Co. Tyrone.
Speaking after the points race, Gillespie said:
“I am really, really happy. It was a great day on the bike. I felt really strong, so I am happy to pull it off. I am proud to be here and represent Ireland. We have a good team around us today, so thank you to everyone and thank you to Cycling Ireland.”
Gillespie is back in action on Saturday, competing in the U23 women's Omnium, which consists of four events: scratch race, tempo race, elimination race and points race.
Competition concludes on Sunday with the Madison races which will see Erin Creighton and Aoife O’Brien partner together for the event.