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Into The Westerlies for "A" Group

posted 15 Aug 2011, 04:52 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 26 Aug 2011, 02:05 ]
(By Mark Monaghan)  
I received a text message on Saturday evening from a very distressed and tired A group leader Mark Horohoe (who was on an excursion in Ballyhora on his MTB) asking if I would be able to take “Group Leader” status for the following morning. After a few messages & the odd bribe I duly accepted!

After a Quick con-flab with fellow group leaders it was decided the best route for the day was to head off towards the rolling roads of Ballymahon, Glasson and on to Athlone and home via Horseleap. With a strong head wind we had a group of 7 wheelers & 2 Tasmanian Devils we set off taking the direct route through the town.

We rode a steady pace all the way to Ballymahon with everybody riding well; the dreaded Skeagh hill was merely a mole hill to this strong group! Turning left in Ballymahon we headed towards Athlone where we met a large a group of charity cyclists, it’s really good to see so many people out enjoying this wonderful sport and raising money at the same time.
Our coffee stop was scheduled for the filling station on the n6 in Athlone where McDonalds was also an option, but being the fitness fanatics we are, we all decide for coffee and a sweet treat in the café!

Homeward bound we headed for Horseleap along the N6 with the wind our backs the pace somewhat increased. The kilometres passed by with relative ease until we hit Horseleap where the inevitable dig came on the hill out of the village.  It then became a battle of strongest and every man for themselves. Ken was riding really well and managed to split the group up, taking the two Tasmanian Devils, (Matt & Will, who at only 16 put in a brilliant ride,) with him. A couple of Chase groups got organised behind them and worked really well to try and close the gaps.

By the end of the spin we had a total of 105km completed with an average of 34kmph.  Well done to all.
Mark Monaghan (centre) took charge of the A Group spin.
Mark Monaghan (centre) took charge of the A Group spin.