Ras Mhaigh Eo 2016 Preview
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Once again there are some big teams form outside Connaught taking on this years event with Scott-Orwell Wheelers bringing a 9 man strong team and having riden the An Post Ras last year the big sprinter Dick O’Brien will be one to watch. The next biggest team is Rossbury Racing with 8 riders and their inform rider last year was Brian Cullen who took the win at the SERC GP in Wexford last August. Lucan have 7 riders to support the young guns Conn McDunphy and Dermot Trulock who will be in contention for the polka dot jersey. Castlebar CC have dialed in with a big squad to support the TT specialist David Walshe and with lead out man Karl Benson to put the pressure on in the sprints classification. Valerio Di Bacco is well up in the A2 leader board and is usually in the mix but the overall yellow jersey is there for the taking this year with no clear cut front runner.
The hosting Club Westport Covey Wheelers have a strong team of 10 riders with Patjoe O’Connell being the inform rider. A number of other An Post Ras riders like James MCGreevy and Richard Meaney should make the splits and pile on the pressure. The Club Champion is Junior rider Sean McGuire and he has 2 comrades in that category for assistance.
The race is getting a bit of a shake up this year with having a shorter TT, bonus seconds in the road stages and alternative route due to road works. Stage 1 will now be on part of the route that blew the An Post Ras to bits last year when crosswinds tore the race apart.
The race promises to be more spectacular than last year with organisers looking to keep more cyclists in the running right to the end. Who’s your money on?