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Celebrating 40 years of Atherly’s cycling bronze medal

Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Cyclists await medal distribution from Prince Charles at the 1974 Commonwealth Games in Christchurch, New Zealand. Xavier Miranda (Jamaica) second place, left, John Nicholson of Australia, the winner, and T&T’s Ian Atherly, the bronze medallist. Nicholson went on to become world champion with his famous bolted shoe to pedals.

National cyclist Ian Atherly won bronze for T&T 40 years ago at the 1974 Commonwealth Games and everytime the Games come around Atherly anxiously anticipates another cycling medal.

Atherly, who celebrated his 60th birthday on July 15, said that he anxiously viewed the games everytime they were held for someone to join him in medal row.

Stanley Bailey also won a medal for T&T at the 1974 Games, winning silver in weight lifting. Atherly, who is hoping either Quincy Alexander or Njisane Phillip could medal at this year’s games, said 40 years should not pass again before T&T wins another medal in cycling. 

Atherly reflected that Commonwealth Games was known then to be the games just below that of the Olympics and probably still is.

According to the former cyclist the T&T public celebrates its athletes in recent times. Atherly recalled that when he returned from the 1974 Games only his father and coach Richard Hart was at the airport to greet him. 

Unfortunately, Atherly did not have his medal for long as on his way back to Trinidad bad weather forced him to leave his medal on the aircraft. He contacted the organising committee to have the medal replaced but his effort proved futile.