March 31, 2019
Former cyclist of the year Grace Young won the first round of the Cycling Ireland National Road Series in Carlow on Sunday.
In the historically challenging Des Hanlon Classic, Young achieved a landmark win.
Young is returning to the form shown when crowned 2016 Irish Female Cyclist of the Year.
Now riding for STRATA3 VeloRevolution Racing Team, Young won a bunch sprint to land the 67km race, beating one of the strongest fields of women ever assembled for an Irish cycling race.
“It was a super-strong field,” said Young. “It was conservative until we got to Castlecomer, where I decided to attack on the climb, which caused a bit of a split. One of the girls came with me and we kept it going for a while, but it all came back together into a group of 10.
“The last 20km we were just driving it into the finish line, as we knew it was going to be a sprint at that stage.”
“There were some really strong riders in that group, and some sprinters in there too, so I just thought I’d see how I felt. Coming in, I knew I had good legs, I felt strong all day, and I just went for it.”
Young, from Cork, pipped Lara Gillespie, a highly-decorated junior with Scott-Orwell Wheelers, and last years Des Hanlon winner Katharine Smyth (Ballymena Road Club).
The Cycling Ireland National Road Series is Ireland’s premier road racing league. The next round is in Blarney, County Cork at the Donal Crowley Memorial Road Race on Sunday, April 14.
FOR MORE DETAILS SEE: BIT.LY/NRS_2019
Results – Women’s Des Hanlon Classic Top 5
1. Grace Young – STRATA3/VeloRevolution Racing Team
2. Lara Gillespie – Scott-Orwell Wheelers
3. Katharine Smyth – Ballymena Road Club
4. Maeve Gallagher – Castlebar Cycling Club
5. Mia Griffin – UCD Cycling Club
Jessica Lamb, National Road Series Press Officer, Cycling Ireland
Ph: 087 942 7870 E: firstname.lastname@example.org