Beginner Cyclist Course

posted 15 Jan 2018, 15:07 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 15 Jan 2018, 15:09 ]

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 14th January 2018)   
Learner WheelerLakeside Wheelers cycling club are starting an adult beginner cycling course next Saturday, 20th January. Anyone who has an interest in taking up cycling is welcome to attend. 

The six-week course will cover a wide range of topics such as road safety, cycling etiquette, cycling skills, fitness, bike maintenance, clothing and several other cycling related topics. The course will be geared to give people an introduction to cycling and hopefully aid them to gain the confidence and skills to enjoy cycling with other like minded people.

After a brief talk on cycling topics, we plan to bring cyclists out for an hour/hour and a half spin at an easy pace on the Old Rail Trail. Having completed the course new cyclists should be able to join in with the club’s D Group which cycles out from our clubhouse based at Columb Barracks at 9.00am every Saturday. This spin entails a leisurely ride of approx. 50kms a good chat and most importantly, a tea stop.

The course is free of charge to participants and will commence at 9.15 am next Saturday, Jan 20th. If you are interested in taking part simply come along to the Co. Council carpark adjacent to the entrance to the Old Rail Trail in the Mullingar Business Park. 

Please bring a serviceable bike (racer, hybrid or mountain bike will be grand), helmet and warm clothes. If anyone has any queries please contact Gerry Wallace at 087 2557733.

Winter Weather Disrupts Cycling Plans

posted 8 Jan 2018, 14:54 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 7th January 2018)   
Unfortunately the weather of late has been very wet, windy and/or frosty so the usual Sunday morning spins have been hampered. Once or twice some members made attempts to get out but on at least one occasion the group turned for home prematurely due to the cold and windy conditions. Hopefully there will be better days to come in the near future and the normal weekly spins will resume. 

Please be aware of weather and road conditions in these wintry months and remember, safety first for yourself and those who we share the roads with must be a priority at all times. 

Turkey Trot
On event that survived the winter weather was the annual Turkey Trot.  Temperatures on 27th December last were very low leading to an icy cold morning but Lakeside Wheelers members are a hardy crew and were not to be deterred by a little bit of frost.

The 27th is the day when the club hosts the annual Turkey Trot spin, a short but fun few hours out on the bikes to release energy after the festive dining and to escape the cabin fever associated with the Christmas period. As usual, the departure time was set for 10am however, due to the aforementioned weather conditions this was postponed until 11am to give the roads a chance to thaw out. Thankfully the salt gritting did its job and like clockwork 60 riders departed the Columb Barracks base en route to Tyrellspass Castle for refreshments.
With not one, but two semi-pro photographers in tow, the progress of the large group was well documented by club President Donie Kelliher and former Chairman, Joe Duffy. It was a fine sight to see such a big peloton in club colours making its way out along the N52 even though the fingers and toes of most riders were tingling with the cold.

On arrival at the historic castle restaurant everyone was treated to fine tea/coffee, festive mince pies and hot scones. Just what was needed to revive the soul on such a cold morning. After a very social hour during which everybody dhared their Santa stories the group remounted for the return journey. Weather permitting, most years some of the groups take a scenic route home but this year there was no chance with everybody electing to head back to base directly.

Many thanks to the staff at Tyrellspass Castle for the lovely seasonal fare served up and also to each member who turned out for this annual club favourite.

The large Lakeside Wheelers Peloton en route to Tyrrellspass on the 2017 edition of the Turkey Trot
The large Lakeside Wheelers Peloton en route to Tyrrellspass on the 2017 edition of the Turkey Trot.

Committee Reviews 2017 and Plans for 2018.

posted 17 Dec 2017, 14:32 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - 17th December 2017)   
The new committee held its first meeting last week and as is usual for this time of year, the agenda was dominated by annual round-ups and planning for events in 2018.

Events Officer Jerry Waugh informed the meeting that the provisional date for our Tour of the Lakes sportive is June 17th with the GP pencilled in for July 15th. As yet there is no decision on the Criterium for next year but the club will be hosting the Leinster Youths Time Trial championships on May 19th. This year the committee received a request from Cycling Ireland to host the GP as a round of the National Road Race Series. This proved to be a very successful day of racing so it is hoped that our GP in 2018 will once again be part of this prestigious race series.
It is now customary for the club to host a round of the Paracyling Invacare TT league and it is scheduled for April 14th in 2018. Rosemount’s Declan Slevin is the main driver of paracycling in the midlands and he will liaise with our own Joe Duffy to stage this race.

After the success of the Hill Climb TT in recent weeks there is now a strong rumour that there will be a summer TT league next year so keep an eye on club notes and emails for more information.

Thank You:
As this will be the last notes for 2017 I would like to take this opportunity to thank all members who sent in reports or contributed in any way to the PRO department over the last 12 months. Great credit and thanks are also due to Kevin Monaghan who works away tirelessly in the background every year keeping our website updated.

Finally, a very Happy Christmas to all members of Lakeside Wheelers and their families and best wishes for 2018.

Footnote (not by Shay!)
A big thank you also to Shay for his PRO work throughout the year and for taking up the torch once again for 2018 - it's a job that Shay is a natural at - please give him a dig out in 2018 with lots of contributions - word and pictures - from across the many facets of the club.

2018 Clubperson of the Year, Eamon Hogan celebrating with Jack Nugent, Carmel Buckley and Mary Taffe at the Lakeside Wheelers Xmas party
2018 Clubperson of the Year, Eamon Hogan celebrating with Jack Nugent, Carmel Buckley and Mary Taffe at the Lakeside Wheelers Xmas party.

Christmas Party & Awards Night

posted 11 Dec 2017, 07:00 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 10th December 2017)   
Lakeside Wheelers Christmas party and annual awards night was held last Friday night in the Greville Arms Hotel. As usual it was a well supported occasion and with cycling in somewhat of an off-season everybody in seasonal mood and ready to enjoy the celebrations.

The annual awards are a big part of the club social calendar as is the choosing of club President for the coming year. Those lucky enough to be selected for awards were Nuala Nolan (Best Newcomer), Patrick Little (Most Improved Rider) and Eamon Hogan (Club Person of the Year). Congratulations to you all and best wishes for 2018.

Eamon Hogan receives his Club Person of the Year award from President, Donie Kelleher
Eamon Hogan receives his Club Person of the Year award from President, Donie Kelleher

Eamon was a very worthy and popular selection for the most coveted award of the club. He has been at the forefront of practically every event the club has hosted over the last few years and is always available to help out. More recently he has been associated with the junior section of the club with involvement in Sprocket Rocket and the Youths Racing team. Well done Eamon and very well deserved.

Prizes were also awarded to those who performed well at the recently held Hill TT organised by Mark Monaghan. This event had faded into the background over the last few years so thanks to Mark and his team for reviving it. The winner was Aaron Wade, in second place was Andy Richmond, followed in third place by Brendan Kiernan.
Finally it was time to announce the name of our Club President for 2018. No change for the moment with Donie Kelleher agreeing to serve another term so well Donie and best of luck for the coming year.

Once again, thanks to all members who attended and congratulations to recipients of those much sought after awards.

All the Presidents Ladies. Donie Kelleher with Mary Taffe, Carmel Buckley, Claire Malone, Cathy Horohoe, Liz Hoctor, Cathy O'Toole and Louise McCarra.
All the Presidents Ladies. Donie Kelleher with Mary Taffe, Carmel Buckley, Claire Malone, Cathy Horohoe, Liz Hoctor, Cathy O'Toole and Louise McCarra.

News In Brief

posted 11 Dec 2017, 06:56 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 10th December 2017)   
Due to snow and frost all club spins were cancelled last Sunday so hopefully the milder weather returns soon or the turbos will be worn out!  The same snow and frost led to the Leinster Football final between St, Loman's and Moorefield (Kildare) being postponed last Sunday so best wishes once again to “The Blues” in the rescheduled game, next Sunday, Portlaoise @ 2pm.

TNT to be found in the Army Barracks!
Thursday Night Turbo sessions kicked off last Thursday and despite the miserable weather there was a good turnout. These sessions are scheduled for every Thursday night at 7pm and no doubt will be over prescribed after all the turkey and mince pies have been consumed over the coming weeks. Keep an eye on these notes for more news regarding TNT.

Birthday Wishes
Congratulations to Dermot Reynolds who celebrated a very (very) significant birthday last weekend. According to reports there were great celebrations in town with many of his cycling friends in attendance. Happy birthday Dermot and best of luck for the next 50!

New Outdoor Escape Shop
Best wishes to Steve Franzoni and everybody at Outdoor Escape who recently launched the new look shop. There was a great crowd at the official launch party and the shop looks really well with a much improved display area for all the clothing and bikes.

David Lally, Mick Reynolds, Moss Keane, Seamus Killian, Eddie Byrne and PJ Carey at Thursday Night Turbo session in the clubhouse.
David Lally, Mick Reynolds, Moss Keane, Seamus Killian, Eddie Byrne and PJ Carey at Thursday Night Turbo (TNT) session in the clubhouse.

Festive Events

posted 4 Dec 2017, 08:06 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 4 Dec 2017, 08:07 ]

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 3rd December 2017)   
The club Christmas Party will be held in the Greville Arms Hotel on Friday, 8th December so we look forward to seeing you all there. Festivities kick off at 8pm sharp and as is customary at this event there will be awards presented and a new Club President to be unveiled. 

While on the subject of all things seasonal the Youths will be having their annual end of year bash in Rock n Bowl on 20th December.

The annual post-Christmas workout - aka the Turkey Trot will, as usual be held on 27th December. More details in the coming weeks.

Blast from the Past - Assembling for Turkey Trot 2012
Blast from the Past - Assembling for Turkey Trot 2012 - All of 5 years ago!

Wheelers AGM Puts New Committee in Place

posted 4 Dec 2017, 07:54 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 3rd December 2017)   
The club AGM was held before a well attended gathering on November 23rd in the Greville Arms Hotel. The meeting was opened by outgoing Chairman, Joe Duffy, who gave a very comprehensive account of how the club performed throughout the last twelve months.  This was followed by reports by officers of the club responsible for various sectors including Membership, Youths, Racing and Finance.

Following these reports the election of officers for the coming year took place and subsequent to this Henry Whitston was elected as Chairman to replace Joe Duffy with Elanor Digby taking up the role of club Secretary and Paul Gibney being elected as Treasurer.  Ed Tyrrell and Ulrika Maher were two more new faces to find themselves elected to the committee for the coming year. 

The meeting concluded with Joe Duffy saying thanks to the outgoing committee for their dedication and commitment over the last two years and wishing the incoming team all the best for their tenure.

New club chairman Henry Whitston
New club chairman Henry Whitston

A Tribute to Alex Conti

posted 17 Oct 2017, 12:57 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O’Toole - Tuesday 17th October 2017)   
In 2011 a group of Lakeside Wheelers members travelled to Belgium for the Tour of Flanders. For me, this trip turned out to be a memorable one but not for the cycling.  On the evening of the professional race I bumped into an Italian guy named Alessandro (Alex) Corti who, in turn introduced me to a Belgian guy, called Chatte.  After a chat over a few beers a connection was made. This chance meeting evolved over time and led to a very special bond between Lakeside Wheelers, De trudys cycling club Gerrardsbergen and Velo Club Oggiono in northern Italy, the club which Alex was a member of. 
In 2012 myself, Jack Nugent, Charlie Sheridan, Robbie Kenny and our wives accepted an invitation from Alex to join him and some of his Velo Club friends at the Tour of Lombardia. It is an understatement to say we we received five star treatment from our new Italian friends. 
In the ensuing years the friendship grew stronger and there were several joint trips between these three clubs to races such as the Tour de France, Giro di Lombardia, the World cycling championships in Florence and Paris-Roubaix. In keeping with the "Gathering" initiative a few years ago we invited the Italians and Belgians to Mullingar in 2013 for a visit which coincided with the An Post Ras. This was our chance to return the hospitality.
The common denominator in all of these celebrations was Alex Corti. His personality was infectious, his passion was cycling but above all, his heart was open to everybody who was lucky enough to cross his path. 

Unfortunately, Alex contracted a rare form of brain cancer in 2015. It was immediately clear that Alex was going to die within a very short timeframe but he bore his condition with amazing dignity and but for his resilience we would have lost him much sooner. Sadly, Alex passed away on September 26th, 2017.

Alex has given us lots of memories. His rendition of the "Irish Rover" as he walked up l'Alpe d'Huez at the 2013 Tour de France wearing a Lakeside Wheelers jersey and carrying a slab of Guinness on his shoulder will stay with me forever. He was renowned for giving his opinion but in his Italian dialect I will always remember him saying " my opeeenion" or when he wanted to confirm or affirm something he would repeatedly say "for sure". Most recently, Alex attended the 40th anniversary celebrations of Lakeside Wheelers in 2016 and whilst he was not in full health, he was adamant that he was going to be there. This dinner coincided with our hosting of the An Post Ras in Multyfarnham and Mullingar and Alex certainly brought the post-race party to life in Multyfarnham. 

Yes, these are personal memories but I know that everybody who knew Alex could give many more examples of his positive and outgoing nature, especially, Jack, Robbie and Charlie.

Alex was one of the most generous and loving people I have ever met and these few words will not come anywhere close to describing him. However, for those of you who had the good fortune to know him I hope they help you to remember your personal memories of him. To those who never knew him, I can only sympathise with you. Likewise, on behalf of everybody in Lakeside Wheelers I send sympathy to his parents Bianca and Giuseppe, his brother Luca, his extended family and all of his wonderful friends who took amazing care of him during his illness.

God bless you Alex, we will never forget you. May you rest in peace.

Your good friend,


Group Photo with Italian Guests
Alex Conti RIP, seen here 4th from the left in the front row.

Club Gear Night Tuesday 3rd October

posted 1 Oct 2017, 13:27 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 1 Oct 2017, 13:28 ]

(By Jerry Waugh - Sun. 1st October 2017)   
We will be holding a club gear night on Tuesday 3rd October from 6-8pm in the clubhouse. ​​​​Please find below the price-list and design for our club gear - note prices have remained the same since last year. We continue to offer a leisure (Summum) and race-fit range (Max) and will have sizing kits available on the night.

We also plan to have a casual soft shell jacket embroidered with the club logo available for purchase on the night. We are currently finalising design and pricing with our supplier. 

Please note that orders can only be accepted with full payment on the night. If you are unable to make the night please contact Joe Duffy in advance as changing the order afterwards has delayed the order process in the past.

Club Gear design

End-of-Season Weekend Away Announced

posted 4 Sep 2017, 05:39 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 3rd September 2017)   
This year’s end of season weekend away has been decided and it looks like it will be a great trip for fans of both road and off-road cycling.

A small working group was tasked with coming up with a location and plan for this trip and it was only this week that the “white smoke” was seen rising from the clubhouse chimney. The date chosen is October 7th and the destination is the Deebert House Hotel in Kilmallock, Co. Limerick.

This location was picked as it is very close to the Ballyhoura Mountain Bike Park which was visited by a small group of members last year and the feedback was excellent. Ballyhoura is laid out in a similar fashion to a ski run with the trails colour coded to denote the difficulty of the terrain so there is something for everyone from novice to expert. The area is also very bike friendly and has some great roads so for anyone who does not want to go off-road there is always the option to do some road cycling. Both groups will be accommodated with choice of routes so decisions on where to ride will be very easy. Members will need to bring their own road bikes but it is possible to hire MTB’s from Ballyhoura if you want to try the off-road option. Of course, there is also the possibility of doing both disciplines on each day of the weekend. The choice is yours!

It is envisaged that this trip will prove to be very popular and as usual, places are limited so if you are interested in going please contact Chairman, Joe Duffy or club Secretary, Jerry Waugh before Sunday, September, 10th to reserve your place.

Details: One night Dinner, Bed and Breakfast in the Deebert House Hotel = €50 per person sharing. 

A group of Wheelers on a previous visit to Ballyhoura

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