Sean Bracken tops end of season A3 rankings

It’s official, another successful year for Sean! You can have a week off, winter training starts next week..

Posted in News, Results

Newry 3-Day Race Report

With this years race proving to be popular the organizers imposed a cap on the size of the teams so 3 riders made the trip up to Newry; Sean Bracken, Dave “Lardo” Carroll, James Lawless with Davey Byrne Manger.

Newry3day_2014

The first stage on Friday evening was 35 miles starting in Warrenpoint. There were a couple of laps along the main road to Newry and back before veering up a climb with 4 steep steps, one of them at 20% gradient. Two NRPT juniors had broken away with a lead of 40 secs by then with the chasing pack having to tackle the nasty decent on the by now, wet back roads. On reaching Warrenpoint the field did 3 laps of a crit circuit through the town with a big crowd cheering them on. The junior escapees were brought back on the last lap and it ended in a bunch gallop.

Saturday brought a 55 mile course with 2 climbs coming in the last 10 miles. Sean was in an early break that got 28 secs at one point but they we were brought back before the stage and overall winner, David Montgomery took off. He had 2 mins at one point and held off to win by 1min 20secs. David is only 19 and has only done a few road races this year and has no club. He was the junior cyclocross champ last year. It was tough over those last two climbs, the last one, Reed Hall was a Cat 1, 3 miles long. Of our men, Sean was the last man over the top maxed out. Lardo wasn’t that far ahead of him and James Lawless blew near the top but did well considering he only started racing in May and has lost 4 stone since April! James and Lardo rode the Suir Valley 3 day last week to get into shape for this.

The afternoon time trial was 4 miles in one direction. The lads had been practicing in the weeks leading up to this and it paid off. Lardo was 5th in the TT with a time of 8.14 min, the winner Mark Downey NRPT did it in 7.48min. Lardos average speed was 29.8 mph. This moved him into 6th overall. Sean ended up 18th overall with a respectable TT.

The last stage was 73 miles with 4 nasty climbs in the last 25 mile. As if that wasn’t hard enough there had been heavy rain all night. Everyone thought it would stop in the morning but if anything, it got worse! However only a few were put off with the majority of riders showing up for the start. The first few km were nervous but with two primes at 8 and 20 miles the hammer went down. Sitting in the bunch you couldn’t see much with the spray in your face. There were lots of technical fast descents. James’ wheels were slipping badly and he retired at 15 mile as he didn’t feel safe on them. A break went at 18 mile. Sean got Dave up to the front and told him to go after Derek Cunningham [last years winner] who jumped after them. Dave jumped but blew up when almost across. Derek made it across and this break of six stayed away for most of the day but they only had around a minute at most and with the climbs coming they were doomed. The Jersey rode strongly with some other teams helping him as well. The race took in Rathfriarland twice, a 39/23 bitch of a climb. The first time up Lardo looked shaky but himself and Sean got over it near the back. The 40mph descent in the driving rain was hairy to say the least. With 10 mile to go they were altogether when Des Woods broke away to take the win. The last time up Rathfriarland Sean got Lardo up the front only for someones chain to come off forcing Sean to stop and restart. He had to chase down the descent on his own to get back on. There was a mad sprint for 2nd place but our two lads were happy to finish in one piece.

There was only one small crash so it was safe enough considering the wet conditions. The stage winner moved ahead of Lardo on GC so Lardo finished in 7th overall and Sean was 15th overall. It was a good result for Dave and he is on his way to being a 1st Cat rider.

A big thanks to Davy Bryne who did Team Manager after a very late call-up. All the stages started and finished in different locations so it was great to have the team car. We had 5 bikes and loads of wheels as well.

A big thanks to the organizers who put on a great race. The Newry 3-day has been a good race for the club and IRC have the most overall winners of any club. We will be back again and are taking entries for next year now.

Posted in News, Results

Giro Stage 1 TTT video

Here’s a little video I’ve put together from the Giro’s Stage 1 Team Time Trial. We had a great spot on the last corner of the course, just before the run in. Great craic was had with the Omagh Wheelers and their visiting Canadian Garmin supporter Justin. News had spread of Dan Martin’s fall so Garmin got the biggest cheer as they rolled in with lumps gone out of them. You can see teams taking it very handy when the road was wet hoping to avoid the same fate.

Video : Giro Stage 1 – TTT

It was great the see the pro’s in full swing and hats off to Belfast for creating a great atmosphere!

Posted in News

Gorey Stage 3 Report

Here’s the report from stage 3 courtesy of Amy-Norah Farrell.

Results of the top 10 are as follows;

Stage 3
1 Darragh Zaidan Adamstown CC 2hr34.08s
2 Mark Reilly LCRC s/t
3 John Priest LCRC +31s
4 Colm Bracken Murphy Survey s/t
5 Dave O’Reilly SDCC s/t
6 Marc Gater Waterford Racing s/t
7 Phillipe Bourdarins Orwell CC s/t
8 Marc O’Callaghan Limerick CC s/t
9 Hugh Byrne SERC s/t
10 Ben Dunne Tullamore s/t

GC
1 Mark Reilly LCRC 5h58.09s
2 Robin Seymour Epic MTB/Expert +19s
3 Paul Kinch Slipstream +28s
4 Marc Gater Waterford Racing +42s
5 Billy Purcell Usher IRC +44s
6 Ciaran Kelly Team Bikeworx +51s
7 Justus Ossege Team Bike-Online +55s
8 Darragh Zaidan Adamstown CC s/t
9 Marc McGavley Mad MTB +1m05s
10 John O’Shea Carlow RCC +1m23s

LCRC’s Mark Reilly will be wearing the yellow jersey into the final stage of the Gorey 3-Day.
Reilly finished second in the stage, crossing the line beside Darragh Zaidan (Adamstown CC) having gone clear of the main bunch on the last lap.
The third stage comprised of four laps of the Craanford-Camolin-Gorey circuit. Robert Seymour (Epic MTB/Expert) started the stage in the yellow jersey, with Peter Kirwan (LCRC) in the KOM jersey & Ciaran Kelly (Team Bikeworx) in the Points jersey, having shown blistering pace in the early morning TT, finishing 30 seconds ahead of nearest rival Seymour.
The race got underway with 153 starters, and it wasn’t long before the attacks started. Riders tried in vain to get away from the main field. The first time up Craanford, the bunch stayed together. One rider was successful is getting 200 metres ahead of the bunch on the road to Camolin, but as the bunch descended into the small village, everyone was back together and it was all to play for again.
Four riders held a slight advantage over the bunch, but Seymour was not ready to lose his yellow jersey just yet, and put in some hard work at the front of the bunch to see the riders swallowed up before too long.
Small groups of riders continued to try & pull out a lead on the peloton, but the bunch never let anyone more than 22 seconds up the road.
The weather was set to change, and as the storm clouds moved in, the bunch was back together and fighting its way up Craanford once again. Driving rain made the roads slippy and it wasn’t long before a split in the group of 20 metres became a cause for concern for riders left behind. The descent into Camolin once again saw the bunch come back together. Early race favourite Ciaran Kelly was to suffer some bad luck, breaking spokes on his wheel. After a quick wheel change, he was fighting his way back through the cavalcade and back into the bunch.
It was at this point that the first significant break of the day occurred. Simon Twomey (Cork County CC), Sean O’Callaghan (Naas CC) and Darragh Zaidan broke clear of the main field. 10 minutes later,and Zaidan and Twomey held a 15second advantage, while O’Callaghan was now hovering ahead of the bunch before being absorbed by the charging bunch.
The gap would continue to increase, eventually making its way up to 55s. Reilly took his chance to jump now, and starting to reel in the break on his own. Zaidan continued to ride hard, losing touch with Twomey and ploughing on on his own. Reilly caught Twomey and the pair worked together, before Reilly’s hard riding saw him splitting from Twomey and going in pursuit of Zaidan. In the final kilometres, Reilly caught up to Zaidan and the pair worked together to hold their 30 second advantage over the bunch, who were now organised and starting to close the gap ever so slightly.
With the line in sight, Zaidan and Reilly went wheel to wheel, sprinting hard and finishing almost side by side, Zaidan the eventual victor and Reilly riding himself into the yellow jersey.
The bunch screamed in 31 seconds later, with John Priest (LCRC) taking third place.
19 riders withdrew during the race, the constant speed and harsh weather causing all sorts of difficulties.
Reilly will now have to defend his yellow jersey in tomorrow’s final stage back to Blessington, his closest rival Seymour just 19 seconds behind. The top eight are within one minute of each other, making for an interesting race.
Zaidan holds the green points jersey & Peter Kirwan retains the polka dot jersey.

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Posted in Gorey 3-Day, News, Results

Gorey 3-Day Stage Details

Hope you’re all ready, only 4 days to go now! Stage Details can be found here.

Posted in Gorey 3-Day, News
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