Whelan impresses in Ballinarobe

Laois cyclists were on the road again last weekend and the venue this time was the Mount Nugent Grand Prix in Co Cavan.

Laois cyclists were on the road again last weekend and the venue this time was the Mount Nugent Grand Prix in Co Cavan.

Representing the Laois club were Phil Maher, Eamon Lennon and Donie Walsh. The race was on a 8km circuit around Mount Nugent with prime sprints on each of the ten laps through the village.

In the early laps Phil Maher and Eamon Lennon both tried to instigate breakaways and on the fourth lap, Phil succeeded and got into a two man break which stayed away for a lap with Phil taking second on the prime sprint.

On the seventh lap Donie Walsh led out bunch for the prime sprint and was just pipped on the line by a wheel length for the win. All three finished well up in the main bunch in a race won by Craig Sweetman of Stamullen after breaking away on the last lap.

The Ballinrobe two-day was the big race of the weekend of 6th and 7th August and Eoin Whelan headed west to represent Laois cycling club. Stage 1 was a hilly 85 km and Eoin put in a fantastic performance to finish 18th on a stage won by former Olympian David O’Loughlin. Stage 2 was a time trial and Eoin covered the tough 8km in 9 minutes 46 seconds to stay in contention for the overall honours. Stage 3 was well controlled by the UCD team of race leader Colm Cassidy and Eoin finished in the main bunch to round off an impressive performance over the three stages.

On Sunday, August 7, Eamon Lennon and Donie Walsh lined out amongst a big field of 115 at the Falling Leaves Classic in Gorey, Co Wexford in ideal conditions for cycling. The race was held over a circuit that featured the tough climb of Kilmurry outside Gorey.

Donie led the bunch over the climb on the last lap which had been whittled down to just 25 with 8km to go. Liam Blanchfield from Wexford caught the bunch by surprise to jump away for the win with a kilometre to go with Donie finishing in 15th place in the lead bunch.