Ras Racer Takes Hillclimb Title
With the FBD Rás fast approaching and fitness levels rising to meet the big event, Odhrán Connors showed the quality of his preparation as he soared to the Orwell Hillclimb title in fine style on Thursday.
The lanky climber made light work of the cartilage grinding ascent of Bohernabreena, stopping the clocks in 14m56s to edge out former champion Brian Ahern by seven seconds with Dylan Rafter a further 12 seconds in arrears.
It was Connors’ second Hillclimb title, matching his win in 2003.
Aideen Collard showed that track power translates to the hill climb environment as she took the women’s top award ahead of Charlotte McDonald and Sandra Telford.
On a night when no less than 73 riders from the five Inter League clubs turned out to endure the flagellating masochism of one of the most intense events in cycling, there were a number of notable performances by Orwell riders.
Connors’ title winning effort was also good enough for third overall and third among the Scratch group riders on the night, while star rookie Pat Conlon and Ivan “I’ve put on weight but I think it might be muscle” McAvinchey were second and third Semi Scratch riders home in seventh and eighth respectively.
It was an Orwell lockout of the points in Semi Limit with Patrick O’Brien, Diarmuid Collins and Cian Donnelly scampering up the hill with unseemly haste for 14th to 16th places overall.
Michael Hanley took top Limit group honours in 18th overall with Noel Flanagan taking third place points in Limit.
Aideen Collard’s gold medal ride also annexed second place women’s points in Semi Limit and with them the lead in the Women’s Inter Club League from club mate Caroline Martinez.
The full results and league table can be viewed here.