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National Criterium Championships 2018

posted 15 Jun 2018, 16:15 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 18 Jun 2018, 02:12 ]
(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 18th June 2018)   
The highlight of the club's celebration of National Bike Week was the staging of the National Criterium Championships in Mullingar town centre last Friday evening.

This was Wheelers’ third time to host this prestigious National Elite race. As usual the promotion was of an excellent standard thanks to a lot of hard work from the organising committee and the members who turned out to assist with running the event on the night.

There were two races to be settled on the night with the Ladies competition classified as a demonstration race which meant that the winner did not get a Champions jersey,  all going well it will be awarded full Championship status in 2019. Despite a small number of entrants this was an exciting race with Fiona Guihen of Black Rose Racing taking the honours. Lakeside Wheelers had one rider in the race with 15 year old Caoimhe O’Brien getting a special dispensation from Cycling Ireland to upgrade to senior ranking for the night. Caoimhe made an excellent start making the initial break of three but a crash in Blackhall car park put paid to her chances even though she bravely rejoined the race to finish in style. 

The men’s race had a full field with 60 riders going to the line for the chance to wear the National jersey. This field included the cream of Irish cycling talent and, as anticipated, it proved to be an excellent race. The speed through the 1.2km town centre circuit was evident from the start with several riders getting dropped in the opening few laps, such was the ferocity of the attackers. The race was down to a battle for gold and silver after just four laps with Mullingar rider Damien Shaw of Holdsworth Pro Cycling and Dillon Corkery of Gerard Cycles-DHL going clear of the bunch. This remained the position for the entire race as the chasers remained at least 20 seconds adrift of the two flying leaders all night.

Damien Shaw and Dillon Corkery in Action in the early laps of National Crit Championships in Mullingar
Damien Shaw and Dillon Corkery in Action in the early laps of National Crit Championships in Mullingar this evening.  More pictures HERE

In the closing stages it was all set for a sprint finish as the large partisan Mullingar crowd got behind Shaw who is an honorary lifetime member of Lakeside Wheelers. However, it was not to be the Holdsworth man's night as the young 19 year old Corkery just edged the two up dash on the line. 

Race organisers were delighted with the success of the race and wish to thank everybody who turned out to watch the event which was expertly broadcast around the town by the commentator, Ger Campbell of Cycling Leinster. As with all good events there is a team required to make them run smoothly and successfully. 
Lakeside Wheelers Racing Committee wish to thank Westmeath Co. Council, Mullingar Gardaí, Mullingar Civil Defence, Mullingar Traders, The Greville Arms Hotel, McDonnell Auctioneers, Donie Coffey, Dr Declan Brennan, Westmeath Examiner, Westmeath Topic, Midlands Radio 3, Kevin Matthews Sound Engineering, Tara Bottlers and Cycling Ireland. Special thanks to the staff at Newbrook Tyres Mullingar who helped out with barriers at very short notice. Finally, a big thank you to all our members who made themselves available to help with marshalling, time keeping, judging and all the other very important jobs needed to ensure the event ran safely. 
The following are the results of the National Criterium Championships...

Men's Elite National Criterium Championships
1st  Dillon Corkery, Team Gerard DHL
2nd  Damien Shaw, Holdsworth Pr Cycling
3rd Darnell Moore, Team Caldwell Cycles
4th David Montgomery, Unattached
5th Paidi O'Brien, Team Gerard DHL,
6th Marc Potts, Unattached

Women's Demonstration Race
1st Fiona Guihan, Black Rose Racing
2nd Jennifer Bates, Team Gerald DHL
3rd Lyndsey Bryce, Dublin Wheelers
4th Orla Hendron, Scott Orwell Wheelers]
5th Sinead Molloy, Tullamore CTC
6th Maura Claffey, UCD Cycling Club

Tackling the the toughest stretch of the circuit in the elite men's race.
Tackling the the toughest stretch of the circuit in the elite men's race.
More pictures HERE