Para cyclist Kate O’Brien wins silver at UCI Cycling World Championships

Canadian Paralympic Committee

August 06, 2023

First para medal for Canada


GLASGOW – Kate O’Brien of Calgary won Canada’s first Para cycling medal at the UCI Cycling World Championships on Sunday with the silver medal in the women’s C4 500-metre time trial on the track at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome.

It is the second straight worlds that O’Brien is runner up in the event. She was the silver medallist at the Tokyo Paralympic Games in 2021 as well as world champ in 2020.

Kadeena Cox of Great Britain won the gold in 35.961 seconds with O’Brien 2.175 seconds behind and Erin Normoyle of Australia third, 2.336 behind the winner.

‘’Getting silver is one of the best things I could ask for,’’ said O’Brien, a former Olympic team member in cycling. ‘’I wasn’t super happy with my time in qualifying but it was the best time I’d done in two major races and it got me into the final.’’

Cox’s time was faster in qualifying at 35.757 and O’Brien was ranked second 2.055 seconds back. The top-six qualified for the final.

‘’After the qualifying I spent time in the basement of the velodrome then went outside to meet my wife for a banana lunch,’’ she said. ‘’Having my wife here was easily the best part of this whole event and knowing we have a baby on the way is very exciting. I’m so happy to have that in my life.’’

Later this week, O’Brien will race in the mixed team sprint with Mel Pemble of Victoria and Tarek Dahab of Beloeil, Que.

O’Brien was injured in 2017 when midway through a motorpacing effort during a track cycling demonstration, her rear tire blew out. She lost control and hit the back of the motorbike and suffered a major head injury.

In 2020 at the Para Cycling Track World Championships, O’Brien made a spectacular debut in her new endeavour, winning the gold medal in the 500m time trial before a home crowd at the Mattamy National Cycling Centre in Milton, Ont.

She is also a past member of the national women’s bobsleigh team. An injury prevented her from making the 2014 Winter Olympic team.

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