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Martyn Irvine: How I put cycling drug cheats to shame

By Declan Bogue

Published 06/01/2016

2013 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, Minsk Arena, Minsk, Belarus 21/2/2013
15km Scratch Race Final
Ireland's Martyn Irvine on the podium after winning goal
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Guy Swarbrick
2013 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, Minsk Arena, Minsk, Belarus 21/2/2013 15km Scratch Race Final Ireland's Martyn Irvine on the podium after winning goal Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Guy Swarbrick

Retiring former cycling world champion Martyn Irvine has told how he shamed the sport's drug cheats - by beating them fair and square.

Irvine bows out admitting he is sure he raced against other riders on performance-enhancing drugs.

"I can 100% say I raced against guys like that, for sure," he said in response to being asked if he knew his opponents were doping, in an exclusive interview in today's Belfast Telegraph.

The former World Champion and first Irish rider to win a World Track title in 117 years added: "I haven't walked in on someone doing something dodgy, but it's definitely there… you know people, by the way they talk what slippery slopes they are tempted to do or have done.

Read more: It's perfect time for me to wave goodbye, says Martyn Irvine

"I was never tempted, nor has anyone asked me to do anything stupid. That's probably because I am pretty outspoken about that sort of thing."

Irvine's revelations will further rock the world governing body of the sport, the Union Cycliste Internationale, who have not recovered from the Lance Armstrong doping scandal.

However, Irvine believed that even competing against riders with pharmaceutical help, he believed he could win while he was in the saddle, saying, "On my day, when the stars align, I am good enough to beat them.

"That's the mentality I took. Two or three times a year I would tear myself apart and perform pretty well and I could beat anybody. I think that's the mentality I had, to keep going."

IRVINE INTERVIEW: Page 52

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