Hunter Valley Masters cyclist Sally McKenna returned from the Australian Masters Track Championships in Melbourne on Sunday as a new world record holder and with five gold medals.
The 54-year-old from Merewether said she entered “everything” at the event in her 50-54 age category and claimed a silver and a bronze medal to go with the golds.
Her rides in the sprint and 500m time trial races was where she excelled, setting a world record in qualifying for the sprint and claiming a national record in the time trial.
The world record was set during solo qualifying for the sprint race, which is later contested between two riders over 750m in a series of heats and rounds before the medal-claiming races.
In qualification, riders have to set a 200m five flying time and Ms McKenna did so in just 12.07 seconds, taking 0.2 off the former record.
“I couldn’t believe when I looked at the timing clock that I’d ridden so fast,” Ms McKenna said.
“Although 0.2 doesn’t sound very much, it’s actually two bike lengths of improvement. The time I did was averaging 60kph for 200m, so it was going pretty quick. I was very excited, it might last for quite a long time.”
Ms McKenna also took out the women’s 120 plus team pursuit along with fellow Hunter Valley Masters Cycling Club riders Anna Whitten and Sherrie-Ann Prossalentisalso.
Trained by renowned cycling coach Glenn Lewis, Ms McKenna is the current world sprint champion in her 50-54 age category after winning at the World Masters Track Cycling Championships in Manchester in 2016 and Los Angeles in 2017.
She splits her riding between Newcastle and Sydney, but will now take a four-week rest before commencing training again ahead of the world championships in the USA in October.