Irish LGBTQ+ para-cyclist Katie-George Dunlevy sets new national record at world championships

Katie-George Dunlevy was previously nominated alongside fellow Paralympic cyclist Linda Kelly for Team of the Year at the 2023 HER Sport Awards.

Irish Paralympic cyclists Katie-George Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal, who set a new national record, preparing for a race.
Image: Instagram @katiegdunlevy, Queer Irish Paralympic cyclist Katie Dunlevy sets a new national record at the UCI World Track Championships.

Irish para-cyclists Katie-George Dunlevy and Eve McCyrstal made history this weekend when the two set a new national record at the UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 

A total of 11 Irish Paralympic cyclists competed at the Track World Championships this weekend. Dunlevy and McCrystal, who’ve earned a number of gold medals at Paralympic events in 2016 and 2021, as well as some World Championship titles at previous UCI events, were easily the most experienced of the Irish Paralympic cyclists at this weekend’s Track World Championships. 

Dunlevy was one of 33 openly LGBTQ+ athletes who competed at the 2021 Summer Paralympics in Tokyo. Following the athlete’s stellar tandem performance at the 2021 Paralympics, Dunlevy spoke to EPSN about what coming out was like for her.

“I came out at the age of 29,” said Dunlevy, now 43. “And it ended up being positive for me, but until then I was in denial and hiding it for years. It was only until my relationship was serious that I told my family. But everyone has been fantastic, it was like a huge weight lifted off my shoulders and I was able to be who I am.

“Growing up, my parents never spoke about it, and it wasn’t seen on TV or anything that I saw, so I never knew about it. When I was having these feelings when I was a youngster, I didn’t know what it was. It was just a very confusing time for me,” Dunlevy continued. 

While Dunlevy and McCrystal finished sixth in the Sprint-Tandem Women’s Elite event at this weekend’s world championships, the duo managed to set a new Irish national record for their performance. They finished the course in an impressive 11.860 seconds, just .0814 seconds slower than UK Paralympic cyclists Elizabeth Jordan and Danni Khan, who took home a trifecta of gold medals from this weekend’s competition. 

HER Sport, a publication that nominated Dunlevy, alongside fellow Irish Paralympic cyclist Linda Kelly, for Team of the Year at the 2023 HER Sport Awards held at University College Dublin on January 27, 2024, shared news of Dunlevy and McCrystal’s achievement in an Instagram post.

HER Sport shared a photo of the cyclists, alongside the caption: “Katie-George Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal set new sprint national record at Para-cycling track world championships in Rio.” 



Visualizza questo post su Instagram


Un post condiviso da Her Sport (

Dunlevy similarly shared her excitement to be back competing in Rio, posting to Instagram a few days before the competition, with the caption: “Rio brings back incredible memories from the 2016 Paralympics. 8 years later we are still at it. A few days after racing on the track in 2016 myself and Eve claimed Gold in the time trial and Silver in the road race.”

“Ready to give our all.” Dunlevy concluded. 



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Un post condiviso da Katie-George Dunlevy (@katiegdunlevy)

The results from this weekend’s world championship will play a major role in qualifying athletes for this summer’s upcoming Paralympic Games in Paris. Track events for the upcoming Games are set to take place between August 29 and September 1, with Road events following from September 4 to 7.

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