Stage 1 – Dunboyne to Kilkenny – May 20th – 147K

posted 22 May 2012, 12:59 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 22 May 2012, 13:45 ]
(By Shay O'Toole)   
Club Chairman Dermot Hogan
Today was nice and sunny as we left Dunboyne in a group of 60 riders, with the pace well controlled by the lead car driver. All went well  as we rode out through Kilcock and  on towards KIldare town. About 30 miles in we were heading for the Hill of Allen when the pace car moved out and caused a natural split in the group. The Wheelers were left looking at each other wondering would we go with the "A"  group or sit in for a handy spin. Our minds were soon made up for us when Jack came along side me and said Robbie was shouting in his earpiece telling us to go with the break so what were we tob do but follow the orders of our Directeur  Sportif. Off we went in chase and stayed at full tilt as we rode across the Curragh Plains and on to Athy for the food stop.

After we were fed and watered it was back to the road and with the two main climbs of the day to come the chatting soon stopped. First up was Farnon's Hill which caused a slight gap but it wasn't until we hit the Category 2 climb of Glenmaloo that the elastic snapped. All Wheelers stayed well in contention and the descent was welcome after the 5km climb through Castlecomer. With speeds of 40mph it was fast and furious but kept us all the way to Kilkenny city where we crossed the official Ras finish line with good crowds lining the streets.  

Day one over and all safely back in our hotel after 140kms of good cycling. Day 2 is looking very lumpy  with 157kms to be negotiated across Tipperary, Clare and up to Gort.