Hi folks, we hope you are all well and enjoyed the weekend.
It has been a hectic couple of weeks in the club and our big event of the year was our recent Mizen to Malin trip which took place on August 4th to the 8th, over four days. Its been nearly a year in the planning and a lot of hours have gone in to organising hotels, planning the routes, organising transport, organising a back up crew and organising training spins for those who were taking part. All we can say is that the trip was a huge success and everyone enjoyed the challenge. We welcomed members from Lower Ormond CC, Nenagh CC, Dunboyne CC and Vistakon CC, Limerick and it was a pleasure to have you all join us on our journey.
The adventure began with a gloomy early start where we left by bus from Nenagh to Cork at 6am and the weather looked like it was going to be less than favourable for us… We had a four hour bus journey to Cork but it was so worth it when we were greeted by amazing scenery and the sun shining bright in Mizen Head. John Foote and John Caulfield traveled to Cork the evening before with all the bikes so when we arrived at Mizen head they had all the bikes out of the van ready and rearing to go which was some service! At 12pm after a group photo was taken the cycle began taking on the 120km journey to Killarney along the beautiful Cork coastline and over the scenic Caha Pass and Molls gap. The sun, incredibly given a few phone calls informed us of miserable rain back home…, shone on us all day and everyone arrived safe to the hotel. We enjoyed the leisure centre and had a lovely meal served up to us. Everyone was very tired that evening after the early start and went to bed nice and early to be ready for the nice short spin awaiting the following morning! 🙂
There were some tired bodies on Friday morning and after a good breakfast the groups set off early on their 216km journey to Oranmore along the coastal route by the Cliffs of Moher and on to Ballyvaughan via Fanore. A great pace was being set by all the groups and before long everyone arrived at Tarbert ahead of schedule to get the ferry across to Killimer in Co. Clare. From there there were plenty of testing climbs and rolling roads to contend with but as we know Mizen to Malin was always supposed to be a challenge. The scenery was stunning on the day with barely a kilometer where there wasn’t something to see and yet again we had fantastic sunny weather for the most part. We were blessed! We had a brilliant lunch stop in Lisdoonvarna in the Roadside Tavern where we enjoyed freshly cooked pizza, lovely fresh seafood chowder and sandwiches made to order. A few of the lads even treated themselves to a small sample of their in house brewery’s very nice tipple! A special mention for the restaurant who opened up earlier than they usually do so we could have our lunch stop there so thanks so much to the lads and ladies there who looked after us very well, it was absolutely super!! After a few more coastal kms and a long day everyone arrived in Galway no doubt tired but very happy. John Foote was kind enough to provide massage for our riders even though he was cycling himself so this was very kind of him and we even had another member, Olivia who was so good to make the trip over to come see us in Galway and help John in providing massage to to the weary cyclists so thanks a mill Olivia! Another understandably early night was had by everyone after the dinner 🙂
We were at the halfway point and the bodies were getting more tired but the excitement was building in anticipation of finishing another day. Saturdays journey was a long one taking our cyclists on a 208km route from Oranmore to Sligo through the stunning scenery of Connemara taking us through Maam Cross and on to the beautiful village of Leenane and its Fjord and on to the always fabulous Westport where we turned back towards our destination of Sligo. Yet again we had more sunshine… Steeped we were!! We also had a second group on the day who took a shorter more direct route to Sligo and they enjoyed a fabulous tailwind to help them along and everyone arrived safely to the hotel and enjoyed the fantastic leisure center with a very refreshing plunge pool that breathed life back into some sore muscles before another very nice meal and a couple of sociables!
D day. Malin head here we come. 190kms of tough rolling roads lay ahead for our groups and another early start from the hotel. We had the most unreal tailwind to Malin and this led to all the groups being an hour ahead of schedule! After the last food stop the weather inevitably turned, this is Ireland after all… We could hardly expect to cycle from one end of the country to the other without some reminder and boy were we reminded! Horizontal rain, that at least felt like sleet, pelted weary faces and a brutal cross wind did it’s best to knock everyone who dared to use deep section wheels off their bikes for the last hour and a half of the journey going up to Malin head!! The finish was in view and only one very steep section of road was between the cyclists and glory. The pain in everyone’s legs was replaced by elation when they crested the climb and crossed the finish line with sheer relief painted on their faces. It was also incredible, given how tired everyone was, how fast people were able to get changed out of the saturated gear… Clark Kent in a phone booth wouldn’t have got a look in!! 😀 Everyone did a fantastic job, a thoroughly mighty achievement by all and another thing crossed off the bucket list.
We rounded things out with a fabulous meal back in the hotel in Letterkenny and the night finished off with a great laugh among friends and a great sing song 🙂
A commemorative plaque was placed at Malin Head by the club to remind everyone of club member Jim Tuohy’s solo record attempt of Mizen to Malin in 2008 where he completed it in 19 hours and 17 minutes!!! Unfortunately Cycling Ireland had set out that for the record to be recognised it had to be under 19 hours and Jim just missed the time by 17 minutes but what an absolutely incredible achievement by Jim, recognised by C.I. or not we had to make sure it got some form of recognition… Jim has also very kindly offered his advice on what he’s learned to any other member who feels like they would like to take on this challenge… Just putting it out there 🙂
As you know any tour doesn’t organise itself, there is always a back up team who makes sure everyone is well looked after and kept safe on the road. We have to mention a few people who did a fantastic job and made the trip a huge success. Thanks to Jan White who organised the hotels, travel arrangements, sustenance and helped in the van. Thanks to John Caulfield who drove the lead van and who dropped off the luggage to hotels each evening making sure everyone had their bags when they got to the hotels. Thanks to Conor who did broom wagon each day and helped with the food stops. Thanks also to Selina Hynes who travelled with Conor for all bar the first day of the trip helping with the food stops and navigation and who took the time to document the trip getting some great photos which you can see here. Thanks to Peter Moynan for all his help and supplying us with loads of goodies for the trip, thanks to John Foote and Olivia Madden who provided massage to the cyclists(and raised some much needed funds for Pieta House while doing so), thanks to Owen Hynes who put a lot of hours into planning and organising a fantastic route for us, doing up google maps and GPX files for the garmins and phones so you couldn’t get lost(although that didn’t stop us 😀 ) and printing us maps of each days route along with detailed directions so we would have them in the pockets for each day. Excellent work by you all, so well done to you. Finally we would like to say thanks to everyone who cycled, you made the trip… so well done.
Thursday 11th – Championship Road Race
We had the last championship race of the season and it was great to see so many cyclists out to contest the title over a demanding course making the title very well earned. Eoin Ryan took a fantastic win on the night putting in a fine performance with Joseph Donnelly jr and Eva Moynan taking the other steps of the podium so very well done to you all. Well done Eoin, our Road Race Champion of 2016!!
Cyclist of the year
After a great race season and after all the points have been totted up, Eoin Woods is our club Cyclist of the Year for 2016. Eoin, super going by you and well done on your achievement. A special mention to young Joseph Donnelly who kept Eoin honest and really kept the race for the title alive! You will no doubt take many titles in the years to come…
Friday 12th and Saturday 13th
Well done to club members Owen & Selina Hynes who completed the J&J plant to plant charity cycle over the two days, starting in Cork. Day 1 was Cork to Waterford and Day 2 Waterford to Limerick all in aid of two great charities Crumlin children’s hospital and the Simon communities of Ireland. This charity spin has raised over €130,000 for charity since beginning 3 years ago and they are on target to add another €40,000+ this year… They are still collecting if any of you would like to support these 2 fantastic charities you can donate any amount on Crumlins website here:https://www.cmrf.org/event/jj-plant-2-plant-charity-cycle-2016
We had two members in action at the National Masters 50 TT in Cong, Co. Mayo. Pat Bergin and John Foote. This years route was a lumpy circuit with plenty of drags in it making it tough. Unfortunately Pat suffered a puncture after 10km so his race came to an abrupt end. John meanwhile finished out the course well with a great effort. Well done to you both for taking part.
This week’s Club Training spins are as follows:
Tuesday: Club training spin leaving from Moynans bike shop, Nenagh at 6.30pm sharp. Route decided by the group.
Tuesday: Club spin 2 leaving at 7pm from Moynans where the avg speed will be in and around 25kph mark. Short distances of 40 to 50km will be covered on the evening. Everyone is very welcome to give this spin a go.
Thursday: We will have our last race of the season, The Flying Mile. In this event you simply cycle a mile as fast as you can! The race will take place on the old N7 Limerick road between the Roundhill and the Yellowbridge with a rolling start. The start is just after the turn for the Silvermines and the finish will be at the Yellowbridge. You can sign on at 6.15pm at Moynans bike shop or at the Roundhill. Group departs to the start at 6.30pm and race starts at approx 7 pm. Entry is €5.
Thursday Club spin for our leisure / intermediate riders leaving at 7pm from Moynans, the avg speed will be in and around 25kph mark. Short distances of 40 to 50km will be covered on the evening. Everyone is very welcome to give this spin a go.
Saturday: Intermediate cycle 40/50km in distance, leaving Woodies at 7.30am. Anyone who wants to is very welcome to join in on this spin. You can contact William on 086 2447888 for more details.
Saturday: Club training spin will be leaving from Woodies car park at 9am. The route will be decided on the morning by the group and use the WhatsApp group messenger to sort out the details closer to the time so people know who’s going etc.
Sunday: Club spin leaving Moynans at 9am. This week’s route: Moynans – Puckane – Terryglass – Towards Portumna – Right at Ferry Inn – Riverstown – Old Birr rd – Cloughjordan – Moneygall – Nenagh, 103km. For anyone wanting shorter turning back at Carrigahorig will make it 56km and coming straight back in the old Birr rd would make it 87km.
Also good luck to anyone heading off to Waterford to do the Sean Kelly tour.
Have a great week everyone!