Michael Conlan

Michael Conlan

AIBA World No. 1 ranked bantam Michael Conlan features in Road To Rio on RTE Wednesday night (8.30pm)

The six-part RTE series captures the ecstatic highs and crushing lows as Ireland’s medal hopefuls – across a range of disciplines – train, compete and try to qualify for Rio 2016.

The audience will watch as the tension builds before big qualifying events,as these athletes strive to reach the pinnacle of sporting achievement- the Olympics.

Focusing not just on sport, this observational documentary series also draws a clearer picture of these exceptional people and how they balance a world-class training regimes with living their everyday lives.

Conlan, Paddy Barnes, Brendan Irvine, David Oliver Joyce, Steven Donnelly and Joe Ward have booked tickets for Rio.

Conlan has the distinction of actually qualifying twice – just to be sure!

The Belfast ace, who is also the current European champion, initially qualified via the World Series of Boxing (WSB) in 2015 and then qualified again after becoming the first Irish male boxer to win AIBA World Elite gold in Doha, Qatar last November.

Consequently, the World place prevailed and he had to “vacate” the spot he earned through the WSB, which went back to the next placed WSB boxer which happened to be Cuba’s Andy Cruz.

Conlan is with the Irish Elite squad at the Institute of Sport in Abbotstown this week training and sparring with Great Britain, Germany, India and Kazakhstan at a world class IABA hosted training camp.

All five nations have qualified 30 boxers for Rio so far with three qualifiers remaining. Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan lead the way with eleven boxers each over the line.

Ireland and Kazakhstan, who finished in joint 5th spot in the medals table at the London 2012 Olympics, meet in a test match at Dubin’s National Stadium on Wednesday night.