Greenmount Cycling Academy hosted an exceptional weekend of cycling for the 2024 Cyclo-cross National Championships, taking place at Limerick Racecourse.
The action got underway on Saturday with several youth categories and M50 and M60 races taking place.
Team WORC riders claimed victory in both the M50 and M60 categories. David Lawless defeated World Champion Johnny McCabe in the M60 race. Paul Birchall completed the podium with the top three riders all finishing within just over two minutes of each other.
Robin Seymour won the M50 category, with Alan Bingham coming home in second place and Trevor Woods in third.
James Cunningham from Orwell Wheelers won the Under 14 Boy’s Race, finishing ahead of Josh McClune and Eoin Davis. In the Under 16 Boy’s Spellman-Dublin Port’s Curtis McKee held onto victory ahead of Caleb McGreevy and James Armstrong.
It was another Orwell Wheelers victory in the Under 14 Girl’s race with Katie Turner topping the podium. Aoife Craig finished second and Naoise Byrne third.
Emer Heverin from Kinnings Cycles Cycling Club won the Under 16 Girl’s. Mia Geary took home the silver medal and Cara Suckling claimed bronze.
Sunday saw some of Ireland’s top riders take to the track. The day began with the M40 Race where Glenn Kinning of Kinning Cycles Cycling Club saw off competition from Ronan O’Flynn and Marcus Flavin who finished in second and third respectively.
An excellent performance saw Conor Murphy in the Junior Men’s Race, finishing over one minute ahead of Joseph Mullen in second and Michael Collins in third.
Dungarvan Cycling Club won the M40 Team Competition and victory in the M50 Team Competition went to Inspired Cycling.
Harvey Claims Men’s Title
Dean Harvey was the rider to watch coming into the final race of the championships. The reigning National champion, he has had a busy Cyclo-cross season and came into today in good form following a block of racing in Belgium among elite international riders.
He won this race in 2023 in dominate and convincing form, and 2024 proved no different. Harvey developed a lead from early on. It was a Trinity Racing one-two, as Kevin McCambridge finished second and Darnell Moore was third.
Reflecting on his win, Harvey said, “It’s hard when you’re coming in as a favourite and do what you need to do, but I’m glad I did what I could to do my best. I’m happy with how it went. It definitely wasn’t an easy race, I think it went as good as it could have gone.
“I really liked the track. It’s a proper cross course, it had a bit of everything in it. The club here did a great job of making the course tough and fast, and good to race on.”
Rafferty Wins Women’s National Championship
In the Women’s race a strong star from Aliyah Rafferty, closely followed by Greta Lawless and Aine Doherty saw the trio extend their lead from the rest of the field.
Rafferty proved uncatchable, with a significant lead going into the fifth and final lap victory was inevitable. Silver went to Greta Lawless and Caoimhe May moved up the leaderboard to win the bronze medal.
The Tofauti Everyone Active rider Rafferty said, “I started in second row, and I just went as hard [as I could] from the very start. I moved my way up into second place and then coming into the first technical section I moved into first and then I really went my max for the next few minutes. I got about a ten second gap and then I kept building on it throughout the race. I think I won by about 40 seconds in the end.”
Michelle Geoghegan won the Masters Women’s Race. Jean Wilson and Melissa Anderson completed the podium.
Speaking to Cycling Ireland after her success, Geoghegan said, “It was a bit frantic in the beginning, I had two crashes in the first lap so that put me on the back foot a little bit. Jean was chasing me hard for the whole race. I think she probably had the better of me on any sections that had any running in them, I could ride all the sand so that’s where I got her. She never gave up – kept me honest for the whole race!”
Full results can be found HERE.