An Post Rás 2017

L-R John Wall Manager, Alan Gray, Ray O`Shaughnessey, Liam Dolan, John Fitzpatrick, Ray Fedigan (Mechanic)

After 8 days of hard racing, 1,200km and 21 categorised, the An Post Rás concluded in Skerries on Sunday last (May 28th). The Louth Cuchulainn team of Alan Gray, Liam Dolan, John & Fitzpatrick & Ray O`Shaughnessey all safely completed the event.

Misfortune did hit the team on stage 1 from Dublin to Longford when Alan came down in a crash & broke a finger. However a splint, some tape & a modified glove saw him impressively soldier on. A consultation with the race doctor at the end of the stage concluded that if Alan could handle the pain he could continue. Stopping never crossed his mind.
The hardest days of the race were stages 4 through 6, which were raced through the hills of Donegal. Searing heat and the constant barge of steep hills made the racing extremely hard. The climbs of the Mamore Gap and the Glengesh Pass were especially challenging. Stage 7 to Ardee, which was to be a homecoming of sorts for the Louth team was a total wash out with the rain falling from start to finish. However this didn't impact the racing and the 167km from Donegal town to Ardee had an average speed of just over 49kph.
The winner was England's James Gullen of the JLT Pro Cycling Team, with the highest placed Irish rider being in 5th place. Liam was the highest placed of the Cuchulainn team in 48th & 9th County Rider.  Alan and Ray had both completed their 3rd Rás each, while it was John's first attempt at the iconic event.