Phoenix CC are once again entering a team into Irelands top road racing event, the An Post Ras.
We are holding ‘A Night at the Races’ in the Beechlawn Hotel, Belfast – 27th February 2015
Tickets are £10 including a buffet with all the proceeds going to support the Phoenix Ras Team’15
We are building a selection of exciting race sponsors and race prizes for this event. If last years event is anything to go by, this promises to be a great night with plenty of banter and craic.
There will be 8 – 10 races each with 8 horses – every horse is for sale – so for the price of £10 you can name your horse and if it wins the race, you win a prize. You’ll see the name of your horse in the race programme so choose wisely.
To buy a horse get in touch with us – Alex, Craig, Dan, Fergus, Jody, Karl, Mike, Rory, Aaron or the support staff Cormac or Geoff.
In the meantime our facebook events page is – www.facebook.com/events/378006355704672/ – please like and share the event.
Following on from our Charity Boxing day CX race, cheques were presented today to our named organisations:-
- The Friends of the Cancer Centre,
- The Belgian Project,
- The Davy McCall Foundation
- so, on behalf of the organisers, I’d like to say thank you to everyone who made it all possible – those who turned up on a very cold and wet day to do all the behind the scenes admin that these events require to make them happen; McConvey Cycles & the McConvey family for their supplies of mince pies & mulled wine (& Santa); Steven Quinn and his staff at Lady Dixon Park and Belfast City Council Parks Dept for the use of their park and finally to all those racers who kept the ‘faith’
- your time and generosity was / is greatly appreciated – thanks!
In the run up to the new Belfast Bike Share Scheme, sustrans are offering free, on-road cycle training to anyone 14 years and older. All skill levels are welcome, as long as you know how to ride a bike you can take part. The accredited training will be offered seven days a week at various times in February and March 2015.
If anyone is interested, register you attendance on the sustrans webite: http://www.sustrans.org.uk/northern-ireland/what-we-do/cycle-training-adults
Phoenix CC plan on running a ‘cross race on Boxing Day in Lady Dixon Park all in aid of several local charities
The race itself will be 12.30-1.30 – mass start for both male & female riders
- riders must be over 16 to enter and all entrants must have a CI race licence (exception will be for Phoenix club members who may race as long as they have a club race licence)
As ALL the proceeds are going to the named charities, ‘prize’ for the 1st male & 1st female will be a bottle of champagne & a mystery prize from one of the bike shops below, and we also intend to have a draw for some spot prizes donated by local bike shops (McConvey Cycles, Dave Kane Cycles, Velo Cafe Magasin, & Kinning Cycles) post race
The course will be set up as a full-on ‘cyclocross’ course – fully taped, with our ‘McConvey’ steps in place & Carnage Corner making a welcome return in all it’s slippy glory & we will have laptop timing – so you can race as hard as you want or just come along for the craic! – we will be allowing riders to compete on mountain bikes….and fancy dress will be optional
Our named charities are:-
The Friends of Cancer Centre – www.facebook.com/FriendsoftheCancerCentre
The Belgian Project – www.facebook.com/thebelgianproject
The Davy McCall Foundation – www.facebook.com/DavidMccallFoundation
More details to follow ……….
The Phoenix trio of Judith, Julie and Therese won the team prize in the National Championships Womans Road Race at Multyfarnham, Mullingar Sat 20th Oct. This is the second year in a row that Phoenix has won the title in the woman’s road race, last year the winners were Judith, Karen and Therese. The race was won by Fiona Meade, Blarney CC.
Phoenix take team prize at womens national RR
On the 14th of June Phoenix hosted the Bobby Crilly Classic, a race that finishes on top of Divis Mountain. The A1/A2 race was won jointly by Ali McAuley and Mike Millar. The A3 race was won by Rory Maguire who finished on his own over a minute and a half ahead of anyone else. Luke Ireland finished third in the A4 race. You can read reports on the Cycling Ulster site.
Ali and Mike near the finish of the Bobby Crilly Classic
Rory Maguire well ahead in the Bobby Crilly A3 Race
On the 15th it was the Ulster Championships in Ballyliffen, Ali and Rory both got medals, Ali was second in the Senior race and Rory 3rd in the Junior race. To add to this Judith Russell was 3rd in the womens race and Sean Hargan won the masters race, a great weekend for the club.
A week later at the Groucho GP in Richhill, Mark Short won the A4 race and Rory Maguire was 3rd in the A2/A3 race. Rory followed this the next day at the Noel Teggart Memorial in Banbridge by coming 4th. In the main race Alex Donald came 3rd completing a great couple of weekends for the club. Ali McAuley and Mike Millar missed the race as they were competing for the Cycling Ulster team in the prestigious Beaumont Trophy race in England.
Mark Short winning the A4 race at Richhill
Ali McAuley in the Beaumont Trophy race riding for Cycling Ulster
After 8 tough stages our team finished 3rd in the County competition. A group from the club cycled from Belfast to Skerries to see the finish and cheer on our riders. Lots of other club members made their way down by car to join in the celebrations. Our first team in the Rás nobody anticipated they would do so well. Congratulations to the riders, Mike Millar, Brian Stewart, Ali MacAuley, Daniel Stewart and Alex Donald, the manager Cormac McCann and the backup team, Joe Henry, Geoff Hewitt, and Anne Helion. Here are the team on the podium at the end of the race.
Wednesdays stage four, on paper at least, is the most difficult stage in this years edition. 183.6km long, with ten categorised climbs, including two category two ascents and one category one mountain – it will push every rider to the limit. Luckily the sun came out for most of the day to make it slightly more bearable (and safe) than earlier in the week.
The Phoenix guys put in a great ride to catapult themselves to 4th in the county team ranking. Just over a minute off third position! Quite an achievement when you consider the strength of the Aquablue and DID teams, both containing ex-professional and international riders.
||CORK City Aquablue
||MEATH Dunboyne DID
||TIPPERARY North Visit Nenagh.ie
||ANTRIM Phoenix McConvey Cycles
||DONEGAL Inishowen Gateway McCafe
Unfortunately Alex crashed on what looked like a stage well suited to his abilities, but still finished well. Mike fared best of the Antrim team, finishing in the second group home, with Ali and Daniel just behind. Brian rolled in with the grupetto to secure a strong result for the team.
The scenery around todays stage was stunning at times, but I’m not sure the riders got much chance to enjoy it. At least the team mechanic Joe did. Thursday is another hilly route, hopefully the guys can keep up their great form!
This week marks the first time in it’s history that Phoenix CC has put forward a team to represent ourselves (and indeed Co. Antrim) in the islands biggest race – the An Post Rás.
What makes ‘the rás’ so important? It’s the islands highest ‘ranked’ stage race, holding UCI 2.2 classification. This means it’s open for entry to Irish UCI professional continental, UCI continental teams, National teams and Regional and club teams. That bottom rung, ‘Regional and club teams’, is what makes it so important to us and amateur riders around the country. It’s what enables the countries best local riders to compete with some of the worlds brightest talents. Phoenix are lucky enough to have a considerable number of the provinces top riders, and are proud to support them as they represent the club and county on this brutal race around Ireland.
L-R Ali, Alex, Brian, Daniel, Mike
The team which began this eight day stage race on Sunday is:
|Antrim Traction-McConvey Cycles
|Manager: Cormac McCann
All of our riders except Brian Stewart are rás first timers, and it will without doubt be the hardest eight days any of them have had on a bike. You can show your support for the riders by following them on facebook (PhoenixRas), twitter (@PhoenixRas14) or our own message board thread (An Post Ras thread). We’ve also set up a page on this site to help you keep tabs on the guys activities. In their downtime they have even managed to put together a few videos so you can track their progress.
After stage three the team is a solid 5th in the county team classification, and well within striking distance of the higher positions! We will also post updates on the teams performace stage-by-stage.
Congratulations to Greg Lennon who won the A4 race at Hugo Loughran GP. Island Wheelers hosted an A3 and A4 race on Friday 2nd May.
Greg wins A4 race at Hugo Loughran P (photo courtesy of raffoto.com)
Full report on cycling ulster here