Thank you to Tony Mairs for sending me this report of Liam

At the Belgian Project, we try to cover as many disciplines in Irish cycling but we only can do that with some help of others as we only can be at one place at the time, and grateful to any organiser of events or photographers who send us info and photos…this way we can keep you all updated what’s going on nationally and provincially…if you had an open event…just sent us a small report and results and photo’s if you can (credit the photo takers please)

A north and south meeting of same minded people

Thanks to everyone who turned out on Saturday for round 1 of the sprinter’s league where the country’s fastest men and women get to flex their muscles at the Sundrive Velodrome in Dublin in what is always a positive, encouraging and welcoming environment. It is now the fifth year of the sprinter’s league and a fantastic day of racing with a little bit of wind but a nice blue sky and one that will live long in the memory. Last year’s league started with a bang when the Vets Team Sprint record was broken by Keith Meaghen, Liam Collins, and John Caffrey. But we would all agree that record-breaking ride was usurped by Orla Walsh smashing not alone the existing Irish Women’s Outdoor 200m record (12.18s joint held by Eimer McMullan and Robyn Stewart) in her first time trial of the day, but then smashing the women’s stadium record and lowering her new national record in her 2nd TT. The previous Sundrive velodrome record of 11.89s was set at the UCI CL1 Dublin International Grand Prix in 2019 by top GB professional rider Sophie Capewell!

Several other top performances on the day too, Tony Mairs never fails to deliver recording the day’s quickest time of 11.15s and a muscular Harvey Barnes was looking very strong taking the match sprint round. John Caffrey keeps edging closer to the Vets 200m record, Deirbhle Ivory is showing early form this year, and once her Dad, Ger, had bothered to pump up his tyres since racing ceased last year his TT times improved significantly. Who knew that having air in your tyres mattered so much! Onto the points format. The points for first TT were awarded based on time. Fastest gets the most points, etc. The second TT’s points are based on how much your time improved from the first TT. Did Ger have inside knowledge??? Onto the match sprints and as ever we award 3 points for a win, 2 for 2nd and 1 point for 3rd in a match sprint. We have only awarded points for one round of match sprints as not everyone got to complete a 2nd round sprint. Speaking of which, in another first for the league, we had a crash. We are delighted to report that David Power and Fionn Sheridan suffered only cuts and bruises and are already planning his return to action. All of us at the sprinters league wish the both of you a speedy recovery. Special mention to those who attended to them at the track and ensured that both riders were safe and comfortable. The results are below, hopefully they will make sense to all.

Finally, a BIG thanks to the three grand musketeers, Hugh Byrne, William Cannon, and Liam Collins who volunteer their time and effort in order to have a league for track sprinting in Ireland! Also thanks to David Swift for the excellent photographs – please check out his album, and all the riders for all being responsible following the strict social distancing and hygiene guidelines making a safe event. Sprinting has taken off in Ireland the past number of years with an annual top-level UCI competition attracting the world’s best and with some amazing performances now happening from our homegrown riders the future is definitely bright for the country’s young fast men and women!

Odhran Doogan in the new colours of Caldwell cycles (