Racing in Carrick on St. Patricks day

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For many, Saint Patricks day in Ireland is all about parades, shamrock, going to mass, Guinness and many other forms of beer. It can be a time of celebration and a time of reflection. For Irish cyclists, especially those in Munster and more especially still, those from Carrick and its’ surroundings it is all about one thing. The Paddys’ Day race.

For the past fifty years or so this has been the real start of the season for anyone born within a training spin of the River Suir. Off the top of my head I can tell you who won the race 52 years ago, take a bow Teddy Power.

The race has had a few different names over the years and has commemorated many of the great sporting legends of the area. This year races commemorate Tommy Sheehan, a man who gave most of life to volunteering for the cyclists of Carrick and his club in particular and William Landy, another man who gave much of his time in the service of his community. Then the main event commemorates one of the legends of Irish cycling. The greatest cyclist from Carrick not to become a Professional, the late Bobby Power. Among his many, many wins including stages of the Ras in 3 different decades, it was the home town wins in Carrick that were some of his most inspiring.

This year sees the introduction of a new circuit that will pass right by the birthplace of the great Sean Kelly. If ever there was a race that will ensure spectacular action, tough competition and worthy winners, this will be it. These are also the training roads of current top professional Sam Bennett. The new sponsor Morris Oil has contributed to the significant prize fund on offer, which is always a big help too.

Here is a short clip that remembers Bobby to the sound of his uncle Liam Clancy singing ‘The Parting Glass’

 

 

The racing starts at 11am and there will be plenty of action to watch right from the off.

For more details see the following press release from the promoting Carrick Wheelers club ;

Saint Patrick’s Day Races Carrick-on-Suir, 17th March 2015 – Sponsored by Morris Oil

As is now tradition, Carrick Wheelers Cycling Club will hold their annual Saint Patrick’s Day races on 17th March 2015. There will be three separate races, covering the various categories, on a new circuit, which takes in the townland of none other than Sean Kelly, from the start/finish line at Crehana via Mahon Bridge and Kilmacthomas village.

This year’s races are kindly sponsored by local company Morris Oil, who have a proud tradition of supporting local clubs and charities. Morris Oil celebrated 60 years in business in 2014 and is delighted to come on board with Carrick Wheelers to sponsor the “Morris Oil Bobby Power Memorial Race” on March 17th. The race circuit passes through the heart of the Morris Oil delivery area, which local drivers Tom Moroney and Michael Purcell have seen from behind the wheel of an oil truck and from cycling it over the years.

Speaking at the launch Sales and Marketing manager at Morris Oil Eoin O’Brien said “We are delighted to sponsor the now famous 17th of March cycling races with Carrick Wheelers. The new circuit is going through the heart of the Morris Oil Delivery areas, and we wish the organisers a very successful event”
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For all your home heating oil and agricultural oils contact your local oil company Morris Oil 051 643317, www.morrisoil.ie.

There will be three races as follows:

• Bobby Power Memorial for A1s, A2s – three laps (124k), starting at 1100 hours;
• Tommy Sheehan Memorial for A3s – two laps (83k), starting at 1105 hours;
• Landy Cup for A4s – two laps (8366k), starting at 1110 hours.

Race HQ and sign-on is by kind permission of Carrick United FC, Coolnamuck Road (R680), Carrickbeg, Carrick-on-Suir and will be open from 0915 hours, with sign-on closing at 1015 hours.

Entry fee for all races is €15 and each race is limited to a field size of 130 – first come, first served! Those wishing to ensure their participation may email Rory Wyley at rjwyley@hotmail.com detailing their name, club (if applicable) and full licence number {e.g., 15A10013 (VET)} by Friday 13th March.

Winners in 2014 were:

Bobby Power Memorial for A1s, A2s – Páidí O’Brien (Osborne Meats/The Edge);
Tommy Sheehan Memorial for A3s – Martin O’Loughlin (Carrick Wheelers);
Landy Cup for A4s – John Hodge (Dungarvan CC).

For further queries please contact race organiser Paul Lonergan – 086 871 8433

Route Information, Crehana – Kilmacthomas Circuit

Start/finish at Crehana on the R677 approximately 1k from the junction of the R677 and R676. This is approximately 4k from the race HQ and riders are advised that parking will be restricted in the vicinity of the start/finish area.

The A1s, A2s will cover three laps for a distance of 124k with the A3s and A4s covering two laps, 83k in total, in their races. While there is no particularly difficult climb on the circuit with 373 metres of elevation gain per lap each race should favour a strong “rouleur”.

Details of the route can be viewed athttp://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/632245706
Biographical Notes
Bobby Power (1954 – 2011):
Bobby started in his career with Carrick Wheelers in his early teens and served the club in many capacities ranging from racing cyclist to coach to PRO to Chairman. It is probably as a racing cyclist that Bobby is best remembered, a prolific winner – Bobby won some 106 open races in Ireland, six Rás stages and finished second overall in the 1978 Rás – it is fair to say that Bobby’s name is synonymous with cycle racing throughout Ireland. On finishing his racing days Bobby turned his attention to other facets of cycling, among them catering for the younger generation through initiatives such as the annual Faugheen league for youths.

Tommy Sheehan (1936 – 1997):
Tommy served Carrick Wheelers in many capacities and also served cycling at provincial and national level, including as President of the National Cycling Association in the 1970s. He firmly believed that no one person was bigger than the club and in the importance of catering for youth riders – Tommy started a youth league c. 1967 through which riders such as Bobby Power, Kevin Power, Larry Power, Paddy Power, Joe Cashin, Billy Kennedy etc. emerged, such foresight resulting in the club continuing to prosper some sixty years later.

Landy Cup:
The Landy Cup was presented to Carrick Wheelers by club member Eamonn Landy to commemorate his father William (1927 – 1995). William was involved with many sporting clubs and organisations in Carrick-on-Suir, driven by his firm belief that activities and facilities should be provided for youths as a means of keeping them from delinquency. The handball alley located at Davin Park is one of the fruits of William’s campaigning for facilities to cater for the youth.

 

Best of luck to everyone on the day,

 

Barry

www.thecyclingblog.com

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