Marc Ryan, born in Timaru in 1982, has gradually built his career. He had a good family background in cycling because his father, Colin was a world-class sprinter in the 1970s and finished sixth in a world professional championship. Colin also won the Australian keirin and sprint titles two years in a row. Initially Marc split his time between road and track, but most of his big cycling achievements have come inside the velodrome. He and coach Damian Marsh have proved a good combination. Ryan’s first experience of the big-time was at the 2004 Athens Olympics, when he was a member of the team pursuit squad that finished 10th. Others in the squad were Hayden Godfrey, Peter Latham and Matthew Randall. His next games outing was at the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games, when he combined with Godfrey, Gudsell and Latham to win a bronze medal in the team pursuit, behind Great Britain and Australia, and was fifth behind three Englishmen and countryman Jason Allen in the 4000m individual pursuit. At the 2007 world championships in Spain, Ryan was in the New Zealand team pursuit - along with Sam Bewley, Wes Gough and Latham - that was shaded by the Danes for a bronze medal. The pursuit team - Hayden Roulston, Ryan, Bewley, Jesse Sergent and Gough - finished fifth at the 2008 world championships, but improved significantly by the time they got to Beijing, where they grabbed a breakthrough bronze medal. They rode 3min 59.277s to place themselves second behind Britain in the qualification round. Into the semi-finals, they were timed at 3min 57.536s, quick enough for third and a bronze medal ride-off against Australia. The New Zealanders rose to the occasion, recording 3min 57.776s to beat the demoralised Australians by well over a second. Ryan was a member of the team pursuit squad - along with Sergent, Bewley and Gough - that won the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in 2010, shaded by Australia for the gold. Ryan had a busy time in Delhi, finishing fourth in the scratch race, seventh in the 1km time trial and 53rd in the road race. At the 2011 world championships in The Netherlands, the New Zealand team’s pursuit squad of Bewley, Latham, Ryan and Sergent finished fourth. At the 2012 world champs in Melbourne, the team pursuiters – Ryan, Gate, Bewley and Gough – grabbed the bronze and then set their eyes on the 2012 London Olympics. Repeating their heroics from Beijing, the New Zealanders – Bewley, Ryan, Gough, Sergent and Aaron Gate (who replaced Gough after the first ride) - were again third fastest (in a time of 3min 57.607s) in the qualifying round at the Olympics, behind Britain and Australia. They went even faster in the match round, their 3min 56.442s again placing them third. In the bronze medal race, the New Zealanders were too good for Russia, recording 3min 55.952s, to win by more than two seconds. The New Zealanders - Gate, Bewley, Gough and Ryan - showed their consistency by earning another team pursuit bronze at the 2012 world champs in Melbourne. Besides his track cycling heroics, Ryan has kept busy riding on the roads and in 2011 signed with the crack Marco Polo professional team.