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Eileen Burns "I am lucky to have so much support" | Commonwealth Games 2018

by Jemma Nimick April 19, 2018

Eileen Burns

Here at See.Sense, we were delighted to have supported the full team of NI riders at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast! All cyclists kept extra visible, even in the Australian sunlight.

Two of Team NI`s women Cyclists (below) who competed in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and put their See Sense ICON lights to good use whilst training in the run up to their events in Australia. They are pictured with the Games mascot Borobi who featured in the `Village heart`.  

Despite no Cycling medals, this was Cycling`s most successful yet for Northern Ireland when taken across all events. All 8 Northern Ireland cyclists finished within the top 15 at one or other of their events, and from that, 4 were top 8 finishers, and our best result was 4th in the Men`s Road Race where Dromore`s Mark Downey was denied a medal by inches after 100 miles of racing.

Para-Triathlete David Kerr (pictured above right) from Portadown who finished 6th in his event at the Gold Coast who used the See Sense ICON on his racing Chairs whilst training in Australia!

Gold Coast athletes Robyn Stewart from Belfast and Eileen Burns from Ballymena who competed for Northern Ireland in Australia. Robyn was 11th in the Women`s Sprint and 12th in the Women`s Keirin on the Track whilst Eileen was 15th in the Women`s Pursuit and 11th in the Women`s Time Trial.

Q&A with Eileen Burns

Eileen is one of the best TT riders from our home cycling scene here in Northern Ireland and Ireland. What we found really inspiring is that she worked her full time job and trained part-time when she was selected onto the Northern Ireland team for the Commonwealth Games.

Q: Did you settle into the time difference OK?

The jet lag wasn’t an obvious feeling if that makes sense! I did keep waking up pretty early for the majority of my time at the games, and in the early days felt a bit nauseous and sluggish. I wasn’t sure if it was jet lag or nerves lol. But did feel good otherwise.

Q: What was it like training in the Gold Coast heat?

Oh my the heat. Inside the velodrome was a shock. So warm and heavy. Had to keep listening to the more experienced riders that those conditions meant fast times. It was like being in a car on a very hot summers day with no air. On the day of my IP though I was used to it. The heat outdoors was difficult. More to maintain hydration on the bike. In TT it was short enough that I didn’t have a drink but the road race I went through a number of bottles and still felt my legs cramping.

Q: What was staying at the Athletes village like?

The athlete's village was class! It was an amazing feeling to know that so much planning and graft had gone into this purpose built facility with all the things we would need and more. We had 24hour dining, access to sports massage, ice baths, gyms, saunas and even ice cream! It was also good to be among all the sports from our own NI and that of the other nations.

Q: What was your toughest moment and best moment of the games?

My toughest moment was when I was on the turbo cooling down after my TT. I sat with a cold towel over my head and got a little emotional. At this point you doubt could you have done more, and it played in my head that’s my Commonwealth TT over now.

Best moments was seeing all the comments and support from home. My cousin, Courtney who is 5 wanted to try her bike for the first time without stabilisers after she saw me on TV. I thought that’s just lovely like. I am lucky to have so much support from my local community across NI and Ireland.

Q: Was there such a thing as A rest day?

No, no rest days lol. At the games, though you aren’t really training. The training is done by that stage. It’s tapering off and maintenance at that point. I was on the bike every day.

Q: Were your family out in the Gold Coast to see your success?

Yes my husband, father in law, sister, brother in law and friend travelled from home to see me compete. I also have friends who live in Oz who travelled to the GC to see me compete.

See.Sense on Wiggins' Pinarello

The ex-Bradley Wiggins Team Sky  Pinarello Bolide bike used by Marcus Christie in the Gold Coast Commonwealth games Time Trial where he finished 7th overall.

Kudos to all riders who competed in the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games - all very inspiring cyclists!

Jemma Nimick


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