16 August 2007

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Hectic Time For Cycle Tourists

The hectic programme of recreational cycle tours reaches a climax this week with the demanding  Inishowen 100 on Sunday.  This is always a popular but demanding event which enables the cyclists to enjoy some of the best scenery in the country.

However, the views and experiences enjoyed on this event will be nothing compared to two of North Down Cycling Club’s stalwarts, Matty Blayney and Duane McCreadie.  At present they are enjoying the trills and spills of the Trans Rockies Race.  The young cyclists headed off from Panorama, near Calgary, on Monday and were immediately launched into the high mountains over extremely difficult steep roads in sweltering heat.  However, they were compensated by unsurpassed views and breath- taking descents.  So hight profile is the event that it is being broadcast live on television in Canada – so we’ll look forward to seeing it soon ourselves.  Incidentally, after the second day the boys are lying 85th out of 300 teams – not bad!

Road Race

Last week’s club race was the final of the season’s road races.  It was run off over six laps of the fast Dam Road circuit.

Although the large limit group had 4 minutes start in the 26 mile race it was obvious that the fast moving scratch group, driven by Mark Kane, was in a mean mood.  By lap three the majority of the field was together and by the line Kane had managed to open up a slender gap over James McMaster with Andrew Headley a very creditable third, Alan Lavery fourth and William Barclay fifth.

Stuart Up-Grades

With the under-age racing just about completed for 2007 most of our young riders are thinking of easing back on training.  However, for Stuart Henry nothing could be further from the truth.  Cycling Ireland’s Talent Identification Officer, Tommy Evans, included Stuart in a multi-sport Talent Camp at Jordanstown last week and whilst he was there arranged for Stuart to be up-graded to under-18 level and included on the team which will be leaving for the Junior Tour of Wales next week.  This is a huge under-taking for the young Bangor lad but is clearly one which Evans feels is well within the young Bangor cyclist’s capabilities.

Having received his new licence on Friday, Stuart decided to compete in the National Junior Track Championships in Dublin at the weekend.  Having very limited track experience this year, due to International commitments on the road, Stuart was a little apprehensive.  However, he quickly demonstrated that he will not be out of his depth at the higher level taking a gold in the 3000m pursuit, a gold in the 500m time trial and silver in the sprint!

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