#Apeldoorn2019 Day 1 Recap
It was a triple treat for the Australian Cycling Team on the opening day of the 2019 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in the Netherlands with Paige Greco, Darren Hicks and David Nicholas claiming individual pursuit world titles. Read More.
“Right now I think I’m feeling every emotion possible,” said Darren Hicks after claiming his maiden world title. “I am excited & relieved, and in disbelief, I can't quite comprehend that I've finally got my first world championship and rainbow jersey, it's crazy!”
Second fastest in C2 Individual Pursuit qualifying (3:42.709) behind Tristan Chernove (CAN) by less than half a second, before Hicks turned the tables on his Canadian opponent by three seconds in the final (3:45.390).
“My plan for qualifying was the same thing we have been working on for months, that is until I came through on my second lap six-tenths up on my schedule,” said Hicks revealing it not all went according to his pre-race plan. “After that, it was 'hold on for dear life' and get through those last ten laps without blowing my left leg apart!! In the end, I think I was fortunate to scrape in as the second qualifier, but hey, I'll take some luck going my way for a change!
“The final was a chance to make right what I did wrong in the qualifier, but unfortunately the tank was pretty empty from leaving it all out there on my first ride. So, in the end, I just settled to my schedule as best I could and tried to be as smooth as possible, the time is a little disappointing but in the end, the time doesn't matter in a medal ride off, just as long as you cross the line first.”
The win comes after a tumultuous year for the 34-year-old Adelaide cyclist who in January had charges against him dropped for a freeway truck crash that killed two people in 2014, the same accident in which Hicks lost his right leg.
“It has been a full on year, it was a long, agonising, very expensive road but it's behind me now, and I can finally focus fully on my racing,” Hicks said. “I just would like to say thanks to everyone that's helped me get to where I am today. I'm very grateful for all the opportunities I have been given and am glad I could bring home the chocolates for the first time on the big stage!
“A thank you to my awesome wife who supports me galavanting around the world riding my bike, your unreal babe, and I can't wait to show you the new bling!!”
The 2019 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships will be held in the Netherlands from 14-17 March and offers valuable qualification points towards the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, with the Australian team to vie against 200 of the world’s best from 30 countries.
Qualification points towards the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games are on offer, with 16 of Australia's best set to vie against 200 of the world’s best from 30 countries.
© Casey B. Gibson