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Ryan Fallon's Junior Cert Woodwork Project 2014 Based On The Rás

Last Year’s Runner-Up McConvey Aiming To Go One Better For 2014 An Post Rás
Connor McConvey Last Year’s Runner-Up Aimin To Go One Better For 2014 An Post Rás

Last year’s runner-up Connor McConvey has been confirmed as spearheading the Azerbaijan Synergy Baku team for the 2014 An Post Rás, which begins in Dunboyneon Sunday.

The 25 year old rider has a strong history in the event, netting fourth overall in 2010, seventh in 2012 and then clocking up three top five stage finishes last year plus an excellent second overall. He finished deadlocked on time with the Polish rider Marcin Bialoblocki, who took the general classification victory by virtue of better stage placings.

The Synergy Baku team has two more Irish riders within its ranks but both of those will unfortunately miss the race due to illness. National champion Matt Brammeier had been pencilled in to ride the race for the second time in his career but while he has been in fine form this season, he has had to withdraw due to chicken pox.

Also out is the rider who finished second behind him in last year’s championships, Philip Lavery. He currently has an infection and has told the team he will not have recovered in time.

The team will include four overseas riders, namely the Germans Christoph Schweizer and Daniel Klemme plus the Austrian duo Markus Eibegger and Jan Sokol.

All have good results to their credit: Schweizer won a stage in the 2013 Tour of Azerbaijan and was second this year on a stage of the Tour of Taiwan while Klemme clocked up a stage win in the Tour of China last season. Eibegger won a stage in the recent Tour de Bretagne and Sokol was second and third on stages of the Mzansi Tour.

McConvey had been below his usual level earlier this year but general manager David McQuaid states that he has turned things around. More>>>

Strong Irish Presence In Ambitious An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly Team For An Post Rás
Sean Downey An Post
Selecting a team that he believes can chase both stage wins and the overall classification, An Post Chain Reaction Sean Kelly manager Kurt Bogaerts has named a strong lineup for the An Post Rás in advance of Sunday’s start.

Bogaerts has today named two Irish riders, another with strong Irish connections plus a Briton and a New Zealand competitor to the team.

The Irish duo are Jack Wilson, the national under 23 champion, plus the 2010 Commonwealth Games team pursuit bronze medallist Sean Downey.

Also in the lineup is the talented young rider Robert Jon McCarthy, who grew up in Ireland but changed to Australian nationality after moving to that country with his family.

The team is completed by two riders who have already had success in the race; the Briton Owain Doull and the Kiwi Shane Archbold.

Jack Wilson An Post
Doull won the points classification twelve months ago while Archbold was first on stage two and third on the final stage to Skerries.

“The team will start with similar goals to last year,” states Bogaerts. “I have looked at the route and I think it is a tougher one than last year. You have three category one climbs close to the finale of stages, and so I don’t think we will have many bunch sprints.

“The riders I have selected should ride well on the course. We will start with the aim of winning stages. I think we have guys who can also take the overall, but things need to fall into place for that to happen. I’m not going to say which guys I think can ride for general classification as then they’ll simply be marked by the other teams, but I know who they are.”

Bogaerts explained the selections, saying that he believes Downey is showing good progress and is at a higher level to last year. He said that Wilson had a tough start to the season but that his form is building well and that he believes his participation in the Tour of Azerbaijan will see him start the An Post Rás in good condition. More>>>

Fear Of Failure Drives Centra Sponsored Cycling Team For An Post Rás.
L To R Pat Coyle Manager, Felix Jackson Mechanic,Sean McInerney,Paul Keenan Enniscrone Centra Sponsor,Padraig Marrey,Garry Higgins Kilkelly Centra Sponsor,Patrick Clarke & Derek Joyce

Mayo Centra team will be the only Connacht Team been represented in the 2014 An Post Ras.

The Glengarrif controversy on 22th May 2013, was to change Irish Cycling forever, after 28 amateur’s riders was eliminated from Stage 4 of Irelands biggest International cycle race after falling outside the time limit for the stage.
The commissaire of the 8 day UCI 2.2 event was perfectly within his rights and rigorously enforced rules 2.6.032 and reduce the once 182 rider field to just 143,
with 15 Connacht riders heading home early. That 160km stage over the Macgillycuddy's Reeks, Listowel to Glengariff, was completed at an average speed of 46kph by Synergy Bakuy professional rider, Pozdnyakov, meaning all riders needed to complete the stage at over 40kph. With 8 categorized climbs including the famous Ladies View, Molls Gap and the Healy's Pass.

The list of Connacht riders committing to the 2014 event were few and far between, with Cycling Ireland bringing in stricter qualification rules. The once amateur race has seen more professional teams enter over the last 5 years, and it’s only a few years away from being a fully professional event. More>>>

Tirian McManus Team Subaru Abion Cycles Next Challenge
Tirian McManus

Irish County Teams Announced For An Post Rás
Ciaran Power Comeragh
Andy Roche Comeragh
After the announcement of fifteen international and professional teams for this year’s race, the Irish county teams to be part of the line-up of the 2013 An Post Rás have today been confirmed for the event.

These include the strongest squads in the country, as well as a highly interesting Waterford Comeragh Race the Rás squad which includes two past winners of the event.

Former professional Ciarán Power is returning to try to add another stage win to his list; he’s also got two overall victories to his credit, while Andrew Roche won in 1997. Power and Roche will likely target stage wins. The team also includes another comeback rider, Michael McNena.

Their team is publicising the Race the Rás campaign, which completes the same route as the An Post Rás and which raises funds for the National Breast Cancer Research Institute.

As to the other teams, last weekend’s Tour of Ulster gives pointers to riders in strong form. Overall winner Damien Shaw has been in superb form this season and has impressed in many races; apart from winning the Tour of Ulster, he also triumphed in the Shay Elliott Memorial and other events.

He broke clear on the final stage with team-mate Bryan McCrystal, who was first to the line and also took the points classification ahead of Shaw. More>>>

Celtic Challenge
The Celtic Challenge Races

This new event is a first because previously no two races UCI 2.2 were not associated. In May 2014, eight stages of An Post Rás and August 2014, four stages of Kreizh Breizh Elites allow Irish and Breton professional teams to compete with Irish and Scottish selections to designate, after a team ranking, Celtic training year.

Alain Baniel, "I announced at the end of last KBE was my desire to get closer to the An Post Rás to promote the Celtic culture around cycling. I look forward to working with Tony Campbell for the Celtic Challenge. KBE has always been willing to host foreign teams and Brittany is a land of bike. We are happy to go in this direction. "

The An Post Rás and KBE, UCI 2.2 race, decided to join forces to create a Celtic Challenge. In this first edition of the challenge five teams Celtic (Irish, Scottish and Breton) will compete this challenge by participating in two races.

This is a team challenge that the first round will be held at the An Post Rás from 18 to 25 May 2014 and the second round at the Kreiz Breizh Elites from 2 to 4 August 2014. More>>>

Italian And British Teams Join Glittering Line-Up For Next Month’s An Post Rás
Christain Delle Stelle Italy
With just three weeks remaining before the start of the 2014 An Post Rás, the identities of the final two international teams to compete this year have been revealed by Race Director, Tony Campbell.

The Italy Team Idea squad and the Great Britain National team will travel to Ireland prior to the May 18th start in Dunboyne and both teams will field strong line-ups and harbour high ambitions.

Italy Team Idea will comprise Christian Delle Stelle, Mirko Tedeschi, Matteo Collodel, Ricardo Pichetta and Alessandro Pettit, a line-up which team manager Omar Piscina says is its best possible selection.

“They are athletes who have won many races in the U23 category. This season Delle Stelle won two races, the 1.2-ranked GP Izola Butan Plin and the 1.12 Trofeo Balestra. He was also second at the 1.1 GP Nobili. As for Collodel, he won the 1.12-ranked Trofeo Fumagalli and finished second in the Trofeo Balestra.

I think we will be very competitive in the sprints with Delle Stelle and Collodel. As for the general classification, Tedeschi will be our leader.”

In the past Tedeschi has taken top six finishes in the Piccolo Giro di Lombardia and the Trofeo Edil C and will seek to use his climbing abilities in the mountains of the An Post Rás. More>>>

Canadian National Champion And Former Junior World Champion Lead Powerful American And Dutch Teams Into An Post Rás
Kai Reus Park Hotel Valkenburg Holland
Zach Bell Smart Stop USA
Former world junior champion Kai Reus and Canadian national champion Zach Bell are amongst a strong line-up of riders confirmed this week as competing in next month’s An Post Rás, with Reus and Bell leading powerful Dutch and American teams in the world-ranked race.

Reus will spearhead the Netherlands Parkhotel Valkenburg selection and will seek to take his second big stage race success on Irish roads.

Back in 2003, months before he took his world championship title, he won the Junior Tour of Ireland and is fired up to take more success here.

Reus’ world championship victory marked him out as someone who could go on to a very big future in the sport but things haven’t followed the expected trajectory. He crashed during his first pro season in 2007, with the-then Rabobank rider suffering head injuries and ending up in a coma. He bounced back from that to win a stage and finished fourth overall in the 2009 Tour of Britain, but then contracted mononucleosis and struggled to find his best form.

Those frustrations caused him to leave the sport and while he returned in 2011, he later took another hiatus away from cycling. Now he’s in action again and, according to team manager Paul Tabak, he’s on course once more.

Ambitious An Post Chain Reaction And Azerbaijan Synergy Baku Teams To Chase Victory In An Post Rás
Conor Dunne An Post Chainreaction
The 2013 An Post Rás runner-up Connor McConvey, last year’s Post office sprints champion Owain Doull plus former stage winners Shane Archbold and Conor Dunne are amongst those shortlisted for participation by their teams for this year’s race, which will begin in just over one month’s time.

The quartet are in the running for inclusion on the Azerbaijan Synergy Baku and An Post Chain Reaction Sean Kelly teams, both of which confirmed today as taking part in Ireland’s biggest cycling event.

The Azerbaijan Synergy Baku team competed for the first time last year and notched up two stage victories, with Kirill Pozdnyakov winning stage four into Glengarrif and Rico Rogers taking stage six into Carlow. Both riders are with different teams this year, but the squad is returning with some very strong alternatives and big ambitions.

“As a goal, the team would always like to have a shot at the overall jersey,” states general manager David McQuaid. “That’s most likely with Connor McConvey if he hones his form. Looking at the squad we are putting forward, stage wins are more likely.”

Connor McConvey Synergy Baku
Three Irish riders are amongst those in line to make up the final five man team. These include McConvey, who last year finished on exactly the same time as overall winner Marcin Bialoblocki, only missing out on the final race victory due to his rival’s better stage placings.

Placing fourth in 2010 and seventh two years later, he’s psyched to finally take the winner’s yellow jersey and to add his name to the list of An Post Rás champions. The other two possible Irish participants are the four-time national champion – and current title holder - Matt Brammeier and the rider who finished second to him in that race last June, Philip Lavery.

The riders from Azerbaijan who are on McQuaid’s shortlist are national time trial champion Elchin Asadov, Tural Isganadarov and national road race champion Samir Jabrayilov, while the Ukrainian Maksym Averin, the Austrian Markus Eibegger and the German Christoph Schweizer are also being considered.

The team will be directed at the race by Arvis Piziks, who finished second to-then USSR team-mate Dainis Ozoles in the 1989 Rás. More>>>

Last Updated: Feb 23rd, 2024 - 15:58:26

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