Daily Diary From Tokyo: A special day for Irish cycling

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I’m honestly running out of superlatives to use to describe this Irish team. 

Just over the halfway point and we already have six medals to our name, three of them coming from Para-Cycling. 

The superstars that are Katie George Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal added to their silver medal by winning gold in the Women’s B Time Trial today retaining their title from Tokyo. 

Of course there was also a bronze medal for hand cyclist Gary O’Reilly in the H5 Time Trial. I’m slowly but surely learning all of this cycling terminology, time trial, individual pursuit, etc. By the end of this trip I might actually know what I’m talking about. I may not know much about the races themselves, but I know they are incredible to watch and we are blessed with the talent we have throughout this team. 

While it was a busy and successful day for Team Ireland on the road, for me it was a strangely quiet day. Although it was a day of firsts. My first nap on the bus (which I’m told is a regular feature of life on these types of events), my first taste of wasabi over here (which I can guarantee will not be repeated), and my first relatively early night after a rare evening meal with other members of the group. 

I’m glad I got my sleep in while I could because the events are coming thick and fast. Swimming will dominate my schedule tomorrow with Ellen Keane, Barry McClements, and Róisín Ní Riain all in the pool. In fairness, as much as I appreciated a relatively restful day today, I did miss getting out and about. Don’t forget that we can only spend our time in our hotel room, venues or the media centre so it felt like a precious day wasted when I didn’t at least visit the MPC. I even feel like I wasted a day of sunshine. Lord knows what the weather will be like in Ireland by the time we return, I need to soak up the vitamin D while I can. 

We’re all counting down the days till we reach that two week goal when we’re given more freedom. I think the first thing I will do is take a walk around the area and just take in all the lights. We have a stunning room of the sprawling city from our hotel and when it’s lit up at night, it’s magic. It’s so unlike any city I have ever been to before with skyscrapers as far as the eye can see. Yesterday was particularly impressive with awesome bolts of lightning dominating the sky. 

I’m getting to a stage of this trip where I don’t think I have anything interesting left to say but Tokyo always throws up something new regardless of our restrictions. And this Irish team has created so many headlines already. Who knows what I’ll come back to you with tomorrow! 

Author: Marisa Kennedy

Marisa is a Digital Journalist with Pundit Arena. You can contact her at marisa@punditarena.com or on Twitter