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31kms of Kerry roads could decide the Rás Tailteann

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By Sean Moriarty

The Rás Tailteann makes a welcome return to the roads of Kerry this week.

RÁS READY: Members of Killarney Cycling Club are ready for the Rás Tailteann which gets underway tomorrow (Wednesday).

Ireland’s biggest cycle race is returning for the first time since 2019.

It will get underway tomorrow (Wednesday) from Dublin with the first stage set to finish at the Horse and Jockey village later that day.

Stage Two will start in the Tipperary town and will finish in Castleisland on Thursday evening.

The Peloton will first arrive in Kerry from the Ballydesmond side. The race is expected to arrive in Gneeveguilla at around 1.45pm on Thursday. It will pass through Scartaglin at around 1.50pm before arriving in Castleisland at 2pm.

Climbers will relish the King of the Mountains challenge at Crag Cave just after 2pm before the riders return to Castleisland via the main Limerick Road.

The stage finish is on the approach to Castleisland about 1km after the entrance to Desmond’s GAA pitch.

“This final section on 31 kilometres of Kerry roads could prove to be the most decisive of the week. After a relatively flat opening stage some very big moves will be made on the tough roads from the Horse and Jockey outside Thurles in County Tipperary to Castleisland which will include the Crag Caves climb as the riders near the finish of the 154.8km stage,” said race director Gerard Campbell.

Friday’s stage will start in Newcastle West, County Limerick.

Please note that this updated timetable is different to the one that was published in last week’s issue of the Killarney Advertiser.

This historic and prestigious international showpiece event for Irish Cycling has deep roots in the Kingdom both in terms of having visited Kerry so many times but also with Kerry cyclists who have done so well in the event over the years. This goes right back to Gene Mangan winning the race in 1955. Others to win the event were the now deceased Paudie Fitzgerald, Mick Murphy and Seamus Kennedy as well as Andy Roche who rode for Kerry in 1997.

However, 2022 marks the 50th anniversary of Killorglin’s John Mangan winning the race and the stage into Castleisland is honouring John’s great achievement in 1972.

Killarney riders are approaching this year’s event with confidence as their preparation has gone well for them.

Killarney Cycling Club riders are under the management of Stephen Daly, Denis O’Shea, Mike Breen and Niamh Sheahan.

Team members are: John Brosnan, Lorcan Daly and Conor Kissane, who will lead the Kerry team’s challenge and will be accompanied by Simon Ryan and Leo Doyle.

“The club is once again in a position to be part of the biggest race in Irish cycling. With the postponement of the International Junior Tour and the Rás during the pandemic, it is a platform for our elite riders to once again race at the top table and in response to our strong financial support from our sponsors throughout the pandemic and in turn building for future Rás teams,” said Killarney Cycling Club chairman Mark Murphy.

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Flesk Fest promises to be a great evening of fun

By Michelle Crean Glenflesk GAA are planning a fun filled evening of top class entertainment. The Flesk Fest takes place on Saturday July 16 at 4pm in The Kerryway Steakhouse […]

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By Michelle Crean

Glenflesk GAA are planning a fun filled evening of top class entertainment.

The Flesk Fest takes place on Saturday July 16 at 4pm in The Kerryway Steakhouse & Bar.

Two exciting bands ‘All Folk’d Up’ and ‘Super Ceili’ will be playing and there’ll be plenty of fun and games and a delicious barbecue, raffle with some great prizes, and of course the ever popular Hang Tough Challenge!

“Please come out and support this great event! Tell your friends and we will make it a night to remember,” Seamus Healy from Glenflesk GAA said.

” Admission is only €15, and tickets are available from Mary McCarrick 087 7750773, Padraig O’Sullivan 087 0530384 or any club officer. They are also available in the Kerryway on the night.

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Rising cycling star selected for Belgium Project

By Sean Moriarty Killarney cyclist Sam Bolger (18) has been selected as one of four riders for the Belgian Project – one of the most prestigious stepping stones for Irish riders […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Killarney cyclist Sam Bolger (18) has been selected as one of four riders for the Belgian Project – one of the most prestigious stepping stones for Irish riders with ambitions to turn professional.

Northern Ireland-based Belgian Danny Blondell is the man behind the project.

For the last 15 years Blondell selects between four and six Irish riders and sends them to Belgium where they stay with local families and contest pro and semi-pro races.

As a race commentator Blondell is well placed to decide who is deserving of inclusion in the project.

Over the first six months of the year he makes decisions while attending early season races.

Those lucky enough to get selected go to live and race in Belgium for the second six months of the year.

Bolger, from Lewis Road, was selected after winning the junior race in the Cycling Ireland National Road Series in Mayo in March and the Orwell Stage Race in County Wicklow in June.

“He is delighted, it is a very big deal,” his father Paul told the Killarney Advertiser.

“He has had a very good year and the wins in Mayo and Wicklow secured the Belgium Project.”

Bolger will head to Belgium in late July and after to the Junior Tour of Ireland which takes place in County Clare between July 12 and 17.

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