The A1’s making the handicap good with hard chasing

Early start for all of us, especially for the lads who traveled from as far as Dublin and Donegal for a race who has a sting in his tail…The long drag up the Rostrevor road coming from Hilltown. The Hill top finish just made this race special, after some hard laps prior to the beast of a drag. We had a full menu of racing with the A1-A2 handicap race first on the road to tackle 5 times the circuit of 12miles before turning to the climb to the finish. It was, in the end, a matter who still had a tiger in the tank as the race once the handicap was overcome split in many pieces. They went with 2 to the line in the end and the very experienced Lindsay Watson showed why he is top 3 in the Irish Rankings despite the very talented Espoir Donal Shearer (Phoenix CC) asking some questions, but just not strong enough in the end. Donal has been all season up front, has many podiums but just not the killer instinct yet required to beat a cycling locomotive called Watson, but then not many top riders can beat the powerhouse man on a good day!! Richard Maybin from Ballymoney RC was 3th and Master Irish Champ Des Woods (Newry Wheelers) a very credible 4th.

The A3 & Junior race was again domination of the junior brigade and it pleased me to see two of my selection pool hopefuls competing for the win…both had been very busy with several attacks and the last one was the winning one…Last year winner Nathan Keown (NDCC) had to be happy with second this time around, but the win of Ciaran Cahoon (Clan Eireann), not a big surprise to me as he showed good performances lately and back to his form the Lurgan lad had last year. 3th today was a junior from the famous O’ Leary Stone Kanturk stable called Tom Moriarty with first senior Stuart Millar NDCC in 4th place.
The A4 race normally stays together and has a dash to the line but 3 lads had other ideas and took a bold winning
initiative and never seen again by the bunch. The nearly caught the A3’s bunch and a man with a Belgian name won the uphill battle. Conor Verbruggen from Bray Wheelers to strong for Sean OG Harrigan from the Foyle club and local man Mark Mc Farland (Newry Wheelers) Glen Phair from Portadown CC best of the rest in 4th. Full results here below courtesy of the promoting club Armagh-Down CC and chief timekeeper Ian Barfoot
A great thank you to to the promoters for a donation towards the Belgian Project bursary fund, it makes a difference and we now nearly have reached our goal of £3000 to share with the 4 graduates who will travel in the summer to Belgium and 10 bursary holders who will be selected half June. We had a full team of photographers today and today’s photo’s courtesy of the master of the lens David Mc Veigh…Here the link to his photo’s on Flickr which can be downloaded free ( more photos will be added during the next few days) All photos on this report from David except the one below who has been sent by a good friend of the project.
The team today…thanks Sharon Mc Farland and David Mc Veigh
Link to Sharon’s photos
Good night and next report comes from Monaghan with the Emyvale GP tomorrow…