Archive for June, 2008

Stage 1 : Dublin to Waterford, 192km – Wednesday 27th August

112 riders from 16 teams start from Grand Canal Square in Dublin Docklands heading to Waterford on terrain best described as ‘undulating’. The peloton will wind its way through the south of the capital city on a 10km neutralised route until the flag finally drops at the National Mint at Dundrum. The race heads south to County Wicklow, well known as the ‘Garden of Ireland’, through Enniskerry and into Roundwood where the first of the sprints in the An Post Green Jersey competition will be contested. Proceeding through Rathdrum, the race crosses into County Carlow and the town of Bunclody before reaching the major climb of the day, the 6km first category climb of Mount Leinster. Two further climbs, including Inistioge will be encountered on the way to the finish in the historic port city of Waterford, finishing on the Quays just several yards from where the Tour de France sprint line was located when that famous race visited Ireland in 1998.

Stage route:

Dublin, Enniskerry, Roundwood, Laragh, Rathdrum, Avoca, Woodenbridge, Aughrim, Tinahely, Shillelagh, Bunclody, Borris, Inistioge, Waterford.
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he 2008 Tour of Ireland cycle race being held 27th to 31st August is set to be the toughest yet with five difficult stages contested by 16 international teams.

The race starts in Dublin on Wednesday 27th August when 112 riders head out on a route across 12 counties toward the final destination of the City of Cork. The 900km race has been awarded a 2.1 ranking on the UCI (the world governing body for cycling) calendar and will attract some of the best professional teams from Europe, USA, Australia and South Africa. The route embraces key towns and cities as well as iconic mountain passes and splendid Irish scenery.

The Tour of Ireland is being run in association with Fáilte Ireland, the national tourism development authority, as part of their campaign to show the countryside of Ireland on world-wide television. RTÉ television will feature the event daily in Ireland and ITV television in Britain will show daily programmes as will France, Scandinavia and USA (Versus Channel) and Asia. Highlights will also be seen in South Africa and Australia.

Paul Keeley, Business Development and Investment Director at Fáilte Ireland said: “We are delighted once again to be associated with the Tour of Ireland through our Sports Tourism Initiative. The event will provide a unique opportunity for television audiences to see the breadth of Ireland’s landscape and scenery and will undoubtedly help boost tourism throughout all the regions over the five days. With diverse countryside throughout Ireland we have much to offer cycling visitors and attract thousands of cycling holiday-makers every year. This year we have invested significantly in cycling hubs to make it easier and safer for cyclists to navigate around Ireland and to help increase the number of people who have cycling holidays.”

At the launch today, the organisers announced that the top team in the world this year ‘Team Columbia’ has already signed up to ride the race. Formerly ‘Team High Road’, their rider list for the race includes recent double Giro d’Italia stage winner Mark Cavendish. The exciting sprinter from the Isle of Man is expected to ride in the Tour de France before participating on the track in the Olympic Games, Beijing. The team will also include triple world time trial champion Michael Rogers from Australia.

Two professional Irish teams, An Post– Sean Kelly Team and Pezula Racing plus an Irish National Team will be competing against some of the best squads on the American and European circuits.

A number of additional sponsors have also been announced. An Post has expanded its involvement to become Official Partner of the race and repeat their sponsorship of the An Post Green Sprinters Jersey.

Official vehicles for the Tour of Ireland will be supplied by Fiat Automotive Ireland who will be providing more than 60 vehicles for teams and race officials.

Official Timing will be provided by Festina Watches who also time the Tour de France, Official Trophies are being created by Waterford Crystal, De Marchi Sport of Italy supply all of the race leaders jerseys, Thule Racks are supplied for all team vehicles and Vittel is the Official Water used throughout the race.
For further information:

Tour of Ireland Cycling Events Limited

Gerry McManus, Press Officer Tel: +353 (0) 87 323 7508 / e: gerry@tourofireland.ie

www.tourofireland.ie

The Women’s Commission of Cycling Ireland will again host “Rás na mBan”, a three day women’s international road race this year consisting of four stages and based in the village of Sneem, Co. Kerry. This year the event will be a ‘Festival of Women’s Cycling’ for all women cyclists from senior’s down to the very young. The event will take place in the beautiful Ring of Kerry on Friday 12th, Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th September 2008. The race headquarters will be in Sneem Hotel.

SPONSORSHIP

We are delighted to announce the new race sponsor for Rás na mBan is Sneem Hotel in Golden’s Cove, Sneem, Co, Kerry. Louis Moriarty who is the proprietor of Sneem Hotel has been largely responsible for the smooth running and success of Rás na mBan over the past three years and is widely acknowledged for his generous support of cycling.

FESTIVAL OF WOMEN’S CYCLING

Rás na mBan has become a very popular and well respected women-only International Road Race in Ireland. Already Riders from Germany, Holland and the UK have confirmed their 2008 participation.
The combination of county riders and overseas competitors ensures great racing, with the Irish riders raising their game, in a bid to score highly in the top county rider ranking. There are prizes on offer for the top 5 county riders over the line.

  • Stage 1 (Fri 12/09/08) – Road Race, 60km
  • Stage 2 (Sat 1309/08) – Time Trial, 5km
  • Stage 3 (Sat 13/09/08) – Road Race, 80km
  • Stage 4 (Sun 14/09/08) – Road Race, 90km

We would like to encourage Clubs throughout Ireland to enter riders in teams as they are guaranteed to enjoy the weekend, regardless of their level.

YOUTH ACTIVITIES:
There will also be girls’ underage races, following last year’s success, and new this year we are planning some short fun events in the village green for the younger kids. We want to cater for all riders from the very young to the under 16s.

Cycling Australia today named five cyclists it intends to nominate to the Australian Olympic Committee for selection in the Australian team for the 2008 Olympic Games.

The pre-nominations relate to track sprint events only. The pre-nominations have been endorsed by Cycling Australia’s High Performance Management Committee (HPMC).

The five sprint athletes who have secured pre-nomination are;

  • Ryan Bayley (Alexander Heights , WA 09.03.1982)
  • Daniel Ellis (Ngunnawal, ACT 07.10.1988)
  • Mark French (Elwood, VIC 13.10.1984)
  • Shane Kelly (Ararat, VIC 07.01.1972)
  • Anna Meares (Gracemere, QLD 21.09.1983)

The final place in the sprint group nominees was decided today after Shane Kelly and Ben Kersten took part in a timed trial at Melbourne’s Darebin Velodrome. The pair were timed over a distance of 625m with Kelly recording a time of 39.198 seconds and Kersten stopping the clock at 39.934 seconds. Continue Reading »

Figures recently published by the International Cycling Union on the 2008 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, held in Manchester, Great Britain, from 26-30 March, show that these Championships were once again a great success.

The five days of competition at the Manchester velodrome attracted some 17,000 spectators. This figure is comparable with the spectator numbers for the 2007 Championships in Palma de Mallorca, Spain.

With respect to the television audience, the coverage was watched by over 157 million people. French TV alone attracted 57 million viewers. This is a growth of 1.7% compared to last year Worlds (+ 11% compared to French TV 2007 figures). Continue Reading »