The Irish riders had a great match one and two at the Road Cycling World Cup in Quebec, Canada, with duos of Katie George Dunleavy and Eve McChrystal as well as Josephine Hellion and Linda Kelly finishing first and second in Friday’s women’s tandem time test. .
Denlevy and McChrystal, the Paralympic champion, beat Heilion and Kelly by 29.71 seconds, and Swedish duo Louise Janring and Karterin Nilsson finished third with 2:42.
European Champion Ronan Grimes also impressed with a super silver medal in the men’s time test in MC4. Damien Verquiere and Dillon Corkyrie finished sixth in the men’s tandem competition.
Meanwhile, Archie Ryan put on a fine show against older and more experienced riders, including the World Tour pros, in the second stage of the Sazka Tour in the Czech Republic on Friday. He finished seventh in the grueling second stage all the way to the top end in Postevny.
Jumbo-Visma Development Team rider was just three seconds behind stage winner Lorenzo Rota and jump to fifth overall.
Still only 20 years old, the Wicklow cyclist is three seconds off Rota heading into the final two stages. The mountainous appearance of both should match his climbing talents.
Finally, Sam Bennett will be hoping that a solid performance on the Tour of Poland will boost his chances of being selected for the Vuelta a España that took a beating when he finished outside the top ten in the final stage in Krakow.
Bennett was 350 meters ahead but faded when the sprint opened. He crossed the finish line in 19th place and thanks to a fifth performance in the second stage, he didn’t score the solid result he was aiming for in this event.
His chances were weighed by the retirement of teammate Bora Hansgrohe and rookie man Jordi Mewes from the race on Thursday.
“The guys kept me in a good position on the track to save energy, and in the last two kilometers I tried to grab the back wheel of another team,” he explained.
“Then I found one, but I think it was too early. When the pace picked up, it was hard to keep up. It was kind of a silly mistake. But I’m glad the guys managed to put me in a good position, and I’m happy with how much I can fight for a position.” Until that moment.
“In the end it wasn’t a great result, but we know what went wrong and we can work on it next time.”
Collegiate sports director Rolf Aldaj explained how Meus’ loss affected Bennett’s chances.
“It wasn’t ideal that Jordi, the last poison man, wouldn’t be around today because of the DNF [did not finish] yesterday. As a result, Sam had to take more risks and invest a lot more by positioning himself. Rayan [Mullen] He took it to the 2 km mark, then Sam had to grab another rider’s wheel from there onwards.
“was behind [UAE Team Emirates lead-out man Juan Sebastián] Mulano, but it [Molano] He stopped early and then the others came from behind with momentum. The runner simply has no chance in this situation without momentum. Then, of course, the sprint was over and Sam couldn’t participate in the end.”
Bennett hopes the team will continue his selection at the upcoming Vuelta a España. He’s won three stages there in the past, and while he’s had a frustrating year with just one victory so far, he needs to ride in what will be his first Grand Tour race since running two stages in addition to the green jersey at the 2020 Tour de France.