On Sunday the sun shone on the Orwell women, cheering them to results in Clare and Navan. Top of the list was Monica Marconi, taking a well-earned third place in the Rás Clár, while behind her Sandra Telford sprinted in for a fine fifth. And Naoise Sheridan battled through a hairy finish to take a fighting sixth in Navan's U16 race.

Of the roughly twenty women who signed on at the Dolmen CC-promoted Rás Clár, almost half were Orwell. The club used its numerical advantage to launch several attacks early on, with Orla Hendron especially active. As the race hit the climb of the day at the halfway mark, the attacks became more frequent, though most were swiftly shut down.

Boyne GP winner Isabel Cogan pushed up the pace on one particularly tough gradient and got away with three others - Roisín Kennedy (Adamstown CT), Emma Walsh (Dungarvan CC), and eventual winner Fiona Guihen (Navan RC). Teammate Monica Marconi jumped from the bunch and it took a monstrous effort to successfully bridge without bringing any rivals with her.

As they crested the hill and tackled the descent, the break were working well together. With only five riders, there was little respite from the wind and the strong sunshine, and Cogan was unlucky to be dropped with only a few kilometres to go.

By the time time they started playing cat and mouse for the sprint in Barefield, they had pulled out over a minute on the bunch. In the end, Guihen had the freshest legs and took a clear win from Walsh, with Marconi taking third behind them.

Cogan was then swallowed up by the remnants of the bunch who were still chasing, with our own Sandra Telford once again displaying her sprinting prowess to take the fifth prize from Noreen O’Toole (Westport Covey Wheelers).

Marconi was a constant placer in this year's Wheelworx Orwell Ladies Crit League, finishing fifth overall in the A division. This was the result of a strong TT and consistent high finishes, which have contributed to her strong form and ability to read a race. She was delighted with the podium finish, and is currently taking a deserved holiday.

Marconi in third place on the podium, Walsh in second, Guihen in first (photo courtesy of Black Umbrella)

The Orwell crew at Rás Clár (photo courtesy of Black Umbrella)

In Navan then, there were a few Orwell riders competing across the various races, but only one name came home with the goods: Sheridan! Our future youth star Uisneach Sheridan competed in the U12 race, and took a super seventh place. His older sibling and recent Duane Delaney Memorial star Naoise Sheridan also showed (not for the first time!) that it's not just the track she can win on.

Riding with the U16 boys, she held her own in an aggressive race the culminated with a hairy sprint. Several riders went down a few metres before the line, with Sheridan not completely escaping the carnage - she was struck on the shoulder by a fallen rider's wheel. However, her bike handling skills shone through, as she stayed upright and took sixth place - an excellent result considering the circumstances!

U16 sprint at Navan, Naoise third from left (photo courtesy of Jeni Sheridan)

Corkagh Park Tuesday racing for women kicked off last week with a perfect evening for the 18 ladies who raced. For some, it was the first race ever; for others, it was a chance to test themselves again on the winding course at Corkagh.

In the A race, the A2 group worked hard to keep their initial 45" advantage but were caught with about 8 mins to go. Roisin Kennedy (Adamstown RC) and Niamh Stephens (UCD) attacked on the penultimate lap to take first two spots. Orwell's own junior champ Rachael Kaye-Mellor from the A2 group took the 3rd spot overall, closely followed by Charlotte McDonald. The ubiquitous Isabel Cogan took the final placing of the race.

Orwell in action at Corkagh Park (photo courtesy of Brendan Culleton)

Rás Clár

1 Fiona Guihan (Navan RC)
2 Emma Walsh (Dungarvan CC)
3 Monica Marconi (DTC Orwell Wheelers)
4 Roisin Kennedy (Adamstown CT)
5 Sandra Telford (Orwell Wheelers)
6 Noreen O’Toole (Westport Covey Wheelers)
7 Josie Knight (O’Leary’s Stone Kanturk CC)
8 Monica Kotecka (Seven Springs)

Sean Nolan Meath GP (U16)

1 Nathan Weir (Island Wheelers)
2 SEAMUS Sinnott (Wexford Wheelers)
3 Conn McDunphy (Inspiration CC)
4 Fionn Jordan (Slaney CC)
5 Adam Thatcher (Slaney CC)
6 Naoise Sheridan (DTC Orwell Wheelers)


1 Luke Smith (Moynalty CC)
2 Ryan Fitzpatrick (Inspiration CC)
3 Luke Hyland (K.C.C)
4 Jack Caldwell (Avonmore Navan)
5 Liam Murray (Moynalty CC)
6 JB Murphy (K.C.C)
7 Liam Hanley (Avonmore Navan)

Unplaced Girl:
Grainne Hanley (Avonmore Navan)


1 Sean Nolan (Avonmore Navan)
2 Emmet Gorman (Stamullen CC)
3 David O Sullivan (Moynalty CC)
4 John Tierney (Moynalty CC)
5 Gaaroid Campbell (Drogheda Wheelers)
6 Shane Murray (Moynalty CC)
7 Uisneach Sheridan (DTC Orwell Wheelers)

Corkagh Park Ladies Racing - R1
A Race

1 Roisin Kennedy (Adamstown RC)
2 Niamh Stephens (UCD CC)
3 Rachael Kaye-Mellor (DTC Orwell Wheelers)
4 Charlotte MacDonald (DTC Orwell Wheelers)
5 Sylvia Gallagher (Bespoke Cycles)
6 Isabel Cogan (DTC Orwell Wheelers)

B Race

B race: 1 Lyndsey O'Neill (Naas CC)
2 Emily-Anne Doyle (Naas CC)
3 Natalie Grieve (Sundrive Track Club)
4 Rebecca Heaney (SERC)
5 Catherine McAteer (Garda CC)
6 Finola Lawlor (Adamstown RC)