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Damien Shaw off to Paracycling Indoor World Championships

posted 23 Jan 2012, 13:10 by Kevin Monaghan
Cycling Ireland have announced the Paracycling Squad for the 2012 UCI Paracycling Track World Championships which will take place  from the 9th to the 12th of February in Los Angeles.The team to represent Ireland in Los Angeles has been named and includes two Male Tandems.  James Brown will be piloted by Damien Shaw and Andrew Fitzgerald will be piloted by Con Collis.  Both tandems will compete in the 1km Time Trial and 4km Individual Pursuit competitions.

 Damien has just returned from ten days of intensive training at the Irish Paracycling training camp in Majorca and is delighted with his new partner James. For the last year Damien was paired with Andrew Fitzgerald but following trials with James Brown as stocker the pairings have been switched. Damien and James worked well together and recorded times several seconds faster than the Irish record for the 1k and 4k events. The faster times will make them much more competitive in LA and should see an improvement  from the 9th place Damien achieved at last years world championships. Damien found that James is able to generate more power which gives a better balance to the bike and a top six placing is now well within their reach. Best of luck to Damien, James and all the Irish team which includes Francine Meehan from Tullamore and her tandem partner Catherine Walsh.

Following his ten days on the track Damien then headed off to meet up with the Sean Kelly /An Post professional team for five days at their winter training camp in Spain. All of the professional cycling teams go to warmer climates during December and January each year to build up the miles before the start of the racing season. Following a meeting with the legend Kelly in November, Damien was invited to join up with the An Post team for experience. Damien thought he was back home as the rain never stopped for the first two days forcing everyone to training indoors on turbo's. For the remaining three days the weather improved and the twenty strong team headed out for a five and a half hour ride each day. With over a hundred miles to be covered and lots of big climbs you would might expect that Damien would be dropped by the big boys but our Lakeside Wheeler is made of stern stuff and was well able to stay with the best of them. He did experience some tiredness on the last day but that is to be expected after his hard training camp on the track. The experience will stand to him and I expect Sean Kelly will be keeping a close eye on Damien during the year.

Damien Shaw meets Fabian Cancellara in Mallorca
Damien pictured with Fabian Cancellara during his training in Mallorca