Ulster Cycling News

Ulster Miss out on Inter-Pro Double.

A reduced squad of Youth Track riders travelled to Dublin on Saturday for the final round of the 3-round National Track Inter-Provincial Series at Sun Drive.
We had opted to miss round two in Kanturk for various reasons, and as it turned out that round was reduced in events so that the full points quota was not issued.

This meant that Ulster's lead from Round 1 was turned in to a `managable` deficit for round 3, so there was still all to play for in an effort to retain the Sean MacAogain trophy. A `skeleton` team was put together at short notice, and managed by Anthony Mitchell and Nicola Oldham for the final events in Dublin.

In the Under 16 ranks we had Declan Mulholland (Clann Eireann) and James Curry (Banbridge), leaving us two short in the category. The Under 14s comprised Hayley Priestley (La Lanterne Rouge) John Buller (Banbridge CC along with Autumn Collins - a guest rider from Leisure Pursuits CC in Munster.
The Under 12s was the only category in which we fielded a full compliment of 3 riders, namely Shenna McKiverigan and Shannon Buller (both Banbridge CC) and James Mulholland (Clann Eireann)

The racing got off to a prompt start, with the Time Trials for all age groups, and it was clear that our Under 12s were dominant and the older categories were performing well, but losing out on vital points due to the reduced number of riders.

Points were tallied after each event, the Time Trial and Sprint, and in the final Scratch events, Ulsters Under 12s scored their second 1-2, and Under 14s scored enough points to leave it mathmatically possible to retain the title.

It put pressure on our two under 16s for the final race, and the maths dictated that they needed to finish first and second to take the overall win.

Unfortunately James Curry had been feeling ill since the first event and did not take the start in the final Scratch race, leaving an impossible task for Declan Mulholland, who nonetheless put up a fight with the Leinster top man Fintan Ryan for race honours.

In the final analysis, Leinster ran out the winners by a 10 point margin, with Ulster left thinking `what might have been`. Clearly we have the quality of young Track riders, but were found lacking in quantity for the final round which has come after a long season for the youngsters.

It was made clear however that the Trophy is only on loan to Leinster, as we fully intend to take it back in 2013 !!!!

Report Anthoony Mitchell

Some of the Ulster Youth Track Squad who competed in the Inter Provincial event in Dublin on Saturday.

The widow of Sean MacAogain was on hand at the weekend to present the Inter-Provincial trophy to the captain of the Leinster team.

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