Killarney Cycling Club will host the county’s biggest one day cycling event next Thursday evening.
The Kerry Road Race Championships will take place on a new 15km course near Beaufort on August 22.
The honour of hosting the annual Kerry Road Race Championships is divided amongst the biggest clubs in the county. Tralee Manor West Cycling Club, Currow Cycling Club and Killorglin Cycling Club all take turns at organising the event on a four-year rotation system and this year the opportunity to stage the race falls to the local Killarney club.
One of the favourites for the County Championship is local rider Conor Kissane. The Barleymount-based rider, the current county hillclimb champion, narrowly missed out on the county road racing league title last week.
The final round of the series took place in Tralee on Thursday, August 8. Kissane needed to finish in front his main rival, Tralee Manor West’s Cathal Moynihan, but tactical riding by the Tralee club kept Kissane out of the top six and handed the league to Moynihan.
County league races are run on a handicap system where the elite A1 and A2 category riders start three minutes behind A3 riders and six minutes behind the A4 competitors.
Killarney Cycling Club’s Marcus Treacy (A3) won the Tralee event. Crucially, two other Tralee Manor West riders, Ross Culloty and Owen Moriarty, both A3 riders, took second and third overall meaning Moynihan and Treacy finished on equal points but the championship was decided in the Tralee man’s favour as he had two wins over the season compared to Treacy’s solitary victory.
Kissane finished in the A1 bunch and ended up third in the standings.
“There were five riders in our group,” Kissane told the Killarney Advertiser. “Two from the Tralee club, including Cathal, and three from the Killarney club. There was no way the Tralee riders were going to share the workload to close the gap. There’s nothing sour in these tactics, it’s just the way cycling works. They knew I had to win the race to take the championship.”
Kissane will be hoping to make amends in the County Championships in less than a week’s time. It will be his first time competing as an A1 rider at the same time his home club is the host.
The championship race also runs on a handicap system but each group is only separated by 30 seconds for this event.
“They [organisers] look at the league events as a training race for us and always make us work that little bit harder,” Kissane added. “The Killarney club will working together [in the County Championships] and I would hope there will be a Killarney winner at the end of the day.”
Riders that could scupper Kissane and his Killarney Cycling Club colleagues include Moynihan and his Tralee Manor West clubmate Cormac Daly.
Killorglin’s Mike O’Shea, a winner of a round of the cycling league this season, is another dark horse. He is capable of breaking away from the main bunch and launching a solo bid for success.
Ireland’s newest and toughest cycle will be a thrilling challenge
Ireland’s newest cycling event comes to Kenmare this month with an exciting and challenging course for the experienced cyclist. Already attracting attention within cycling communities around the country, Velo Kenmare […]
Ireland’s newest cycling event comes to Kenmare this month with an exciting and challenging course for the experienced cyclist.
Already attracting attention within cycling communities around the country, Velo Kenmare will tackle some of Kerry’s toughest climbs and highest mountain passes.
Taking place on October 22, Velo Kenmare is an 135km timed loop route starting and finishing in Kenmare. The total climbing distance is 1,650m, and organisers hope to appeal to serious cyclists who are looking for a new and thrilling challenge.
No stranger to cycling events, Velo Kenmare is being managed by Elite Events Management, who also successfully deliver iconic cycling events Wicklow 200, Ride Dingle and the Ring of Beara Cycle.
Cyclists are encouraged to register for Velo Kenmare on the Velo Cycle Ireland website www.velocycleireland.ie but places are limited for the enjoyment and safety of all participants, and anyone interested is urged to sign up soon as places are filling up.
The tough enough mountain climbs are over Molls Gap, Ballaghbeama Pass, Ballaghasheen and Coomakista. The route will take in breathtaking scenery Kenmare is famous for, and incorporating some of the most stunning parts of the Wild Atlantic Way and Ring of Kerry. It is hoped visitors to the cycle event will be encouraged to stay for a few days, and will all be given €20 vouchers or ‘Velo Dollars’ to spend in local shops which will be redeemable against goods and services in Kenmare.
Riders will be allotted a time slot to allow for a staggered start, taking them along a fully marshalled route, with medical cover, bike mechanic support, and hot food and entertainment at the finish in Kenmare.
Making its mark, Velo Kenmare participant race packs will come inside a yellow Velo Kenmare water bottle and finishers’ medals are in the shape of a yellow cow bell. Prizes will be awarded for the quickest top three male and top three female finishers, and fastest male and female will be awarded the title of King and Queen of the Kerry Mountains.
Experienced cyclists are encouraged to take on this exciting new challenge, testing themselves and their clubmates for the fastest finish across these four gruelling climbs, through some of the most beautiful landscape in the country for the best welcome back at the finish.
It’s tip-off time for new-look Lakers
National League Division 1
Scotts Lakers v Limerick Sport Eagles
Saturday at 7.30pm
Killarney Sports & Leisure Centre
The 2022/23 National League tips off on Saturday evening and the Scotts Lakers will be hoping to get their campaign off to a flyer at home to the Limerick Sport Eagles.
The Lakers narrowly missed out on a playoff berth last time around, mainly due to a disappointing start to the season. Playing their first four home games at alternative venues probably didn’t help; the Killarney Sports & Leisure Centre was being used as a makeshift vaccination centre at the time. That’s all ancient history now, thankfully.
With that in mind, a fast start will be a priority, beginning with the visit of the Eagles this weekend.
It’s always difficult to tell until at least a few matches have been played but head coach Jarlath Lee appears to have made some good moves during the off-season.
Godwin Boahen will be missed but Dutch point guard Esebio Strijdhaftig has come in as a replacement, and Ukrainian big man Dmytro Berozkin – all 6’10” of him – has also come on board.
American shooter Eric Cooper Jr’s time here was brief; he has moved on already with Indiana native Jack Ferguson filling his shoes. Just like former laker Seán O’Brien, Ferguson played college ball with Colgate University.
The Lakers have retained the services of Portuguese player Rui Saravia, a skilled passer who has settled in nicely.
Just as essential as the imports are the local players who make up the majority of the squad. Mark O’Shea and Paul Clarke are important figures in the squad, although their involvement is likely to be curtailed by football commitments for the time being.
Youngsters Jamie O’Sullivan, Senan O’Leary and David Gleeson could well see more game time this season after exhibiting great promise in 2021/22, and other St Paul’s graduates like Mark Sheahan, Jack O’Sullivan and Eoin Carroll will also play their part.
A player to keep a close eye on is Ronan Collins, a Gneeveguilla native who has represented Ireland with distinction at underage level.
The club will be hoping for a healthy turnout for their season opener.
Meanwhile, the Lakers’ crosstown rivals the Killarney Cougars have an away fixture to get things started. They take on SETU Carlow (formerly IT Carlow) at the Barrow Centre on Saturday evening.
The St Paul’s women’s team (who are back in the National League for the first time since 2012) are also ready for their opening match of the new campaign. They travel to Kilkenny to take on the Marble City Hawks on Saturday at 7pm.
The team is managed by well-known local coach James Fleming and will be backboned by Killarney players like Lynn Jones, Rheanne O’Shea, Cassandra Buckley and current Ireland U16 international Leah McMahon.
Canadian Sophia Paska (formerly of the Limerick Celtics) and American Yuleska Ramirez Tejeda (ex-Limerick Sport Huskies) will add some recent league experience to the squad.
Paul’s first home game of the 2022/23 season will come next Saturday, October 8 against the Celtics.
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