Irish para-cyclist Colin Lynch will take to the boards of the National Cycling Centre’s velodrome on Saturday as he aims to break the C2 class Hour record of 41.31 kilometres.
That current record for the class was set in 1999 by French rider Laurent Thirionet, who pipped Lynch to Paralympic bronze in the individual pursuit at London 2012 by just 0.1 of a second.
His attempt on the record will be streamed live on YouTube and you can watch it here.
Former para-cycling time trial and individual pursuit world champion Lynch, who is targeting next year’s Paralympic Games in Rio, is approaching this weekend’s ride with some trepidation, however.
“To be honest, I just want to get it over with,” he told the International Paralympic Committee’s website. “It’s weighed on my mind now for so long.
“I really just want to get up there, do it, be successful and get it over with.”
Lynch, whose left leg was amputated below the knee when he was aged 21 following long-standing complications from an injury sustained while playing rugby as a teenager, undertook a trial run in August.
He said: “I know exactly how hard it’s going to be and how much it’s going to hurt. But I also know I can do it.”
Comparing the Hour attempt to riding at world championships and the Paralympic Games, he went on: “It is a whole different animal. Something like this is mentally and physically tougher.
“You have to remember why you’re doing it. You just can’t stop. You can’t take a break. You can’t let up and decide to go harder again. Track riding doesn’t work that way.
“So yeah I’m nervous but I’m also confident,” continued Lynch, who grew up in Canada but represents Ireland and is based near Manchester.
The para-cyclist, who has blogged for road.cc, added: “Most para-cyclists aren’t aware that these records and opportunities exist, so it’s not something that they would really think about doing.
“We all sit there and watch the Bradley Wiggins in the world do these records, but they don’t realise they could be having a go at it themselves.”
Lynch’s attempt on the record takes place on the same track where at the start of May, Alex Dowsett set his UCI Hour Record that would be beaten by Wiggins the following month on London.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.