Shannon Mc Curley

Hi Shannon, It is a pleasure to talk to you,

You were born in Australia, What prompted you to represent Ireland ?

 My parents and grand parents were a big factor in my decision to declare for Ireland,as all my family is Irish.

Can you explain the cycling discipline you are involved in at Rio ?

Racing in the Keirin it is a motor paced race which which the athletes sprint for victory following a speed-controlled start behind a motorised pacer after it pulls off after 5 and a half laps.
You are Ms Diversity, having tried out running , soccer , netball and Taekwondo until a knee injury saw you take to the exercise bike to recover , what was that recovery like ?

 I got on a bike for recovery to get my body moving again and then I got back into aths only then to try triathlons and realised I was quite strong on a bike. So I raced both cycling and athletics for another year until I made the full switch to Cycling in u15s

Did you realise straight away that you liked the bike ?

 I realised straight away I was quite dominant on the bike compared to aths. My first Australian championships I placed 4th after only 4months of cycling compared to years of athletics where my best planing at a nationals was 5th in the 800m.

Harry your Grandad is a big inspiration for you , can you tell about him and how he helped you out ?

My granddads always been a big inspiration still now we love talking about my racing and up
Coming events and my travel and I just wanna do them proud while they can still be around to watch me. It’s hard as they can’t travel the world to watch me race at there age anymore. But my favourite photo I have is of me crossing the finish line after winning a race with one arm in the air and his face in the crowd right at the line.

What does a training day involve ?

 It’s varies alot at the moment. But a normal day is gym in the early morning followed by a 2hr drive to Melbourne to train on the track for 3hours and then drive home and crawl into bed haha it’s quite tiring.
You are based in Gippsland and then you travel to Melbourne to train in a Velodrome? Does all the travelling not take it out of you? It takes it out of me so much. The final 5week block in Portugal will be very beneficial for me to cut out that travel time.

You have already secured your place in Rio, what’s the aim now that your there ?

 I’m hoping to have strong race. I haven’t made a semi final at a qualifying event before my best result at a World Cup was 13th so I’m wanting a semi final and top 12 result for sure. Once your through to the semis anything can happen then.

Are you glad you chose to represent Ireland over the country of your birth Australia ?

 Yeah defiantly. All my family’s Irish.

What the difference between Road racing and Track cycling ?

 Track cycling is all single gear so gear selection before your race is vital as you can’t change it out there and we have no breaks so that makes it fun haha.

How do you like to get away from training, what do you do to relax ?

 Sleep hahaha I love sleep. If I never had to get out of bed I wouldn’t. Early morning gym sessions are the hardest for this reason!
Will you continue to train in Australia after Rio or would you consider a move to Europe ? I’ll be based both in Europe and Aus. I’ve got my coach here and some amazing Malaysian training partners who I work hard with in Melbourne.

Lastly Shannon , What are your plans for after Rio ?

After rio it doesn’t stop. That’s my season. I have my first race in October so I don’t get much break to chill after the Olympics so for me it’s all go from October right through to April.
Thank you so much for taking time out to talk to me. All the very best in Rio , I’ll be watching closely….

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