Power back in Olympic picture

CIARAN POWER’S performances in the Kerry Mountains during Rás Mumhan over the Easter Weekend could strengthen his claim to a place on the Irish team for the Olympic road race.

Criteria for Olympic selection could be published today according to Martin O’Loughlin who was added to the selection committee at Easter.

“We have forwarded the criteria to the Board of Cycling Ireland for approval and, as far as I know, it is just a matter of rubber-stamping it,” the former Olympic team manager said. “The criteria will be much different than in former years because, for the first time in a long time, there is a hill on the course and this is not just a hill — it’s a mountain.”

From that point of view Ciaran Power will have done himself no harm at all during Rás Mumhan because is performance on the two first category climbs on Easter Sunday was nothing short of spectacular.

He will have another visit to the Kerry Mountains in next month’s FBD Insurance Ras which will feature several international teams.

Germany is the latest country to be added to the list for the event which sets off from Navan on Sunday, May 18.

Already the Iranian pro Team Azad and Bulgaria’s amateur squad Team Nessebar have confirmed their participation — and at least three other countries are expected to declare for the world-ranked Irish national tour.

The five man German Stevens Racing Team will be led by the very experienced René Birkenfeld and includes nineteen year old Ole Quast, one of the rising young stars of German cycling. The other three riders are Johannes Sickmüller, Sascha Wagner and Yannik Teidt.

Following the start in Navan the race will take in stage finishes in Ballinamore, Claremorris, Lisdoonvarna, Tralee, Skibbereen, Clonmel, and Roundwood with the final stage on Sunday, May 25, running from Newbridge on to now traditional circuit around the seaside town of Skerries.

This weekend’s action will centre around events in Fermoy and Balbriggan. The Silver Pail Grand Prix in Fermoy should attract Ciaran Power who will be putting the finishing touches to his preparations for next week’s Tour of Turkey.

Brian Kenneally (Myhome.ie/Cycleways), who also goes to Turkey, will go to the line as defending champion while the promoting Fermoy CC will be pinning their hopes on former winner Michael Hennessy.

Last weekend at Whitechurch Michael Concannon won the Jim O’Leary Memorial Trophy on his own, leaving young Sam Bennett (Dan Morrissey Carrick Wheelers) to outsprint Ciaran Power for second place with Hennessy fourth At the same venue the afore mentioned Martin O’Loughlin won the Ken O’Keeffe Memorial. He has been second in the Silver Pail for the past two years — to Michael Hennessy and Brian Kenneally — and is long overdue a win in the event He won’t have his protégé, Sam Bennett, to worry about this weekend as he is doing his Leaving Cert Oral Irish Exam on Monday while Paul Griffin from Tralee is now three days into the Tour of East Java.

Meanwhile, Páidí O’Brien, riding for the An Post team, finished second in a 40 man sprint for Stage 2 of the Tour of Mallorca . It highlighted a fine return to form for the Banteer rider who is now fully recovered from a bout of ‘flu.

Ciaran Power: Performance in Kerry mountains boosted Olympic hopes.

Power back in Olympic picture

By Brendan Mooney

CIARAN POWER’S performances in the Kerry Mountains during Rás Mumhan over the Easter Weekend could strengthen his claim to a place on the Irish team for the Olympic road race.

Criteria for Olympic selection could be published today according to Martin O’Loughlin who was added to the selection committee at Easter.

“We have forwarded the criteria to the Board of Cycling Ireland for approval and, as far as I know, it is just a matter of rubber-stamping it,” the former Olympic team manager said. “The criteria will be much different than in former years because, for the first time in a long time, there is a hill on the course and this is not just a hill — it’s a mountain.”

From that point of view Ciaran Power will have done himself no harm at all during Rás Mumhan because is performance on the two first category climbs on Easter Sunday was nothing short of spectacular.

He will have another visit to the Kerry Mountains in next month’s FBD Insurance Ras which will feature several international teams.

Germany is the latest country to be added to the list for the event which sets off from Navan on Sunday, May 18.

Already the Iranian pro Team Azad and Bulgaria’s amateur squad Team Nessebar have confirmed their participation — and at least three other countries are expected to declare for the world-ranked Irish national tour.

The five man German Stevens Racing Team will be led by the very experienced René Birkenfeld and includes nineteen year old Ole Quast, one of the rising young stars of German cycling. The other three riders are Johannes Sickmüller, Sascha Wagner and Yannik Teidt.

Following the start in Navan the race will take in stage finishes in Ballinamore, Claremorris, Lisdoonvarna, Tralee, Skibbereen, Clonmel, and Roundwood with the final stage on Sunday, May 25, running from Newbridge on to now traditional circuit around the seaside town of Skerries.

This weekend’s action will centre around events in Fermoy and Balbriggan. The Silver Pail Grand Prix in Fermoy should attract Ciaran Power who will be putting the finishing touches to his preparations for next week’s Tour of Turkey.

Brian Kenneally (Myhome.ie/Cycleways), who also goes to Turkey, will go to the line as defending champion while the promoting Fermoy CC will be pinning their hopes on former winner Michael Hennessy.

Last weekend at Whitechurch Michael Concannon won the Jim O’Leary Memorial Trophy on his own, leaving young Sam Bennett (Dan Morrissey Carrick Wheelers) to outsprint Ciaran Power for second place with Hennessy fourth At the same venue the afore mentioned Martin O’Loughlin won the Ken O’Keeffe Memorial. He has been second in the Silver Pail for the past two years — to Michael Hennessy and Brian Kenneally — and is long overdue a win in the event He won’t have his protégé, Sam Bennett, to worry about this weekend as he is doing his Leaving Cert Oral Irish Exam on Monday while Paul Griffin from Tralee is now three days into the Tour of East Java.

Meanwhile, Páidí O’Brien, riding for the An Post team, finished second in a 40 man sprint for Stage 2 of the Tour of Mallorca . It highlighted a fine return to form for the Banteer rider who is now fully recovered from a bout of ‘flu.

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