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An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release May 14, 2009
Highly Eexperienced Field Ready To Go For FBD Rás
Sam Bennett Tipperary Dan Morrissey
Aaron Buggle Irish Development Squad
Hailing this year’s foreign line-up as perhaps the most experienced to take part in the FBD RÁS, race organiser Dermot Dignam has said that it’s all systems go for a gripping edition of the round-Ireland tour, which begins in Kilcullen on Sunday.

“I think this has to be one of the highest, if not the highest, level of experience we’ve yet seen from overseas riders,” he enthused today. “The field includes former Tour de France yellow jersey and multiple stage winner Jaan Kirsipuu, another stage winner Leon Van Bon, former Olympic champion Luke Roberts, world championship gold medallist Chris Newton...the list goes on and on. There are some very strong international teams and also a very good level of Irish competitors. That, plus a varied and testing course, points to a great eight days of racing. We think it’s going to be particularly memorable edition, and that there will be a very worthy winner in Skerries on Sunday week.” More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release May 14, 2009
List Of Competitors FBD Insurance Rás 2009
Dermot Dignam Race Director, Adrian Taheny Director Marketing & Sales FBD Insurance Pcl. & Model Roberta Rowat & Eddie Dawson

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release May 11, 2009
Strong Britiah Pro Teams Boost FBD Insurance Rás Lineup
Chris Newton Double Rás Winner Team Rapha Condor
2006 Winner Kristian House Team Rapha Condor
The international challenge in the FBD Insurance RÁS has been further boosted by the news that three powerful British Continental (Pro) Teams will be in the line-up when the big 8 day race gets underway from Kilcullen next Sunday. The teams include three former winners of the race, Chris Newton, Christian House and Andrew Roche.

Already pro teams registered in Australia, Denmark, Greece, Germany, China and Austria are in the line-up with Norway, Ireland, Ireland Development Squad and fifteen county teams completing the field.

Double FBD RÁS winner, past track world champion and former Olympic silver medallist Chris Newton will lead the Rapha Condor team in the race, which begins in just over a week’s time. The four other riders in the squad must also be considered as real threats for the general classification. More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release May 8, 2009
An Post Team Return Home Aiming To Deliver At FBD Insurance Rás
Paidi O'Brien
David O'Loughlin
The An Post Sean Kelly Team is back on home soil ahead of next week’s FBD Insurance Rás, which gets underway in Kilcullen, Co. Kildare next Sunday. Four of the five members of the Belgian based team have been confirmed, including two Irish riders, David O’Loughlin and Paidi O’Brien, but last year’s Rás champion Stephen Gallagher, will not be back to defend his title due to personal reasons.

World Track bronze medalist and recent Olympian David O’Loughlin, who will be competing in the Rás for the first time as part of the An Post team, will be joined by Irish compatriot Paidi O’Brien. The two Irish riders will be joined by Belgian duo Nicko Eeckhout and Benny De Schrooder, with one final team member to be confirmed on Monday.

“Defending champion Stephen Gallagher will not be part of our Rás team this year,” Manager Kurt Bogaerts confirmed. “Stephen will not compete due to personal reasons and we are disappointed as he won the race last year, so it would have been good for him to have the chance to defend his title as part of the An Post team. More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release May 5, 2009
Cycling Ireland Announces National Under 23 Development Squad For FBD Insurance Rás
Stephen Halpin Irish Development Squad
With the May 17th start of the FBD Insurance Rás fast approaching, Cycling Ireland has confirmed the lineup of what is a solid Under 23 CI Development Team for the event.

Ciaran Cassidy, Stephen Halpin, Aaron Buggle, Adam Petri Armstrong and Urban Monks will take on a strong field of international and domestic competitors in the 2.2-ranked UCI event, one of the highlights of the Irish sporting calendar.

“This is a relatively young U23 Development Team,” said Cycling Ireland’s High Performance Director Phil Leigh. “I am expecting them to focus on selected stages, whilst gaining vital stage race experience against what is turning out to be a very strong field this year.

“The U23 Team have been selected on their performances over the early season and Easter stage race period. Ciaran Cassidy won the final stage of Ras Mumhan and finished an excellent sixth overall. Stephen Halpin rode strongly throughout the four days in Kerry for a fine eighth overall, while Urban Monks was in the key move on the final day and followed up with a win in the Peter Bidwell Memorial More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release Apr 28, 2009
Another Tour de France Stage Winner Confirmed For FBD Rás
Leon Van Bon Won Stages In The Tour de France
Jaco Venter Trek Marco Polo
Joining the previously-announced Jaan Kirsipuu, who will compete with the Norwegian Giant Veolia team, another multiple Tour de France stage winner is set to line out in this year’s FBD Insurance RÁS.

Leon Van Bon won Tour stages in 1998 and 2000 and also finished third in the 1997 world road race championships. The powerful Dutch rider will lead the Chinese-registered Trek Marco Polo team in the grueling Irish tour, which begins in just over two weeks time in Kilcullen.

“We expect to bring a young team of riders with Leon van Bon as a mentor,” said team manager Gudo Kramer. “It will be the start of our Euro-campaign, so will be exciting to see where we stand. We bring a pretty complete team to the Ras, with fast finishers and climbers, experience and talent.”

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release Apr 23, 2009
McCann Spearheads Irish National Selectin In FBD Insurance Rás
2004 Winner David McCann Ireland
Drawing on a blend of youth and experience, Cycling Ireland has confirmed what should be a strong national team for this year’s FBD Insurance Rás. The home challenge will be spearheaded by multiple national road race and time trial champion David McCann, who has taken a total of six stage victories in the race and was outright winner in 2004.

McCann is one of Ireland’s most experienced international competitors. His list of overseas successes include overall honours in the Tours of Korea, Milad du Nour and Indonesia, as well as stage victories in races such as the prestigious 2.HC-ranked Tour of Qinghai Lake. He finished fourth overall in that event last year.

The 36 year old Belfast man is currently in fifth place in another Asian stage race, the Jelajah Malaysia event, and is building form and confidence prior to what he hopes will be a victorious push in the FBD Insurance Rás. More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release Apr 21, 2009
Kirsipuu Set To Be Most Experienced FBD Rás Competitor
Jann Krisipuu Team Giant Veolia Norway
Former Tour de France multiple stage winner and race leader Jaan Kirsipuu has been confirmed as leading the Norwegian Giant Veolia team in this year’s FBD Insurance RÁS. Aiming for at least one stage win the vastly experienced Kirsipuu will make a determined effort to add the FBD RÁS to his long list of victories.

The Estonian has had a hugely distinguished career, holding the Tour’s maillot jaune for six days one decade ago, netting stage wins in 1999, 2001, 2002 and 2004, and also nabbing a similar stage victory in the Vuelta a Espana in 1998.

Former Irish pro Mark Scanlon previously competed with the sprint specialist while on the Ag2r team and helped him to take that 2004 Tour stage victory.

The sprinter clocked up over 130 wins during a 14 year pro career and, although he officially retired from professional cycling in 2006, the 39 year old still competes successfully as an amateur. He was Estonian time trial champion in 2007 and is the reigning title holder for the road race. More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release Apr 17, 2009
Bulgarian Riders Aiming For Podium In FBD Insurance Rás
Martin Grashev In The White Jersey In 2008
A stage win, a podium finish in the final general classification plus the award for best young rider are the targets of the Greek-registered Heraklion-Nessebar team, confirmed today for this year’s FBD Insurance RÁS.

The strong Bulgarian quintet selected for the squad will join previously-announced teams Germany Kuota Indeland, Denmark Designa Køkken and Austria Arbo KTM Junkers for the prestigious international event, which begins in Kilcullen on May 17th and ends eight days later in Skerries.

Four of the five riders on the team competed in last year’s race, and will be bigger threats this time round as a result of that experience. Martin Grashev was second in the best young rider classification as well as fifth on stage two, while Bogdan Stoytchev was third on stage four.

Also returning are Georgi Georgiev and Spas Gyurov, national champions for road race and stage race respectively. The team is completed by the 2008 Tour of Bulgaria winner Ivaylo Gabrovski, who also scooped the 1.2-ranked GP Sharm El Sheikh in February of this year. More>>

An Post Rás : 2009 Event : Press Release Apr 10, 2009
Former Olympic & World Chamipon To Head German Kuota-Indeland Team For FBD Insurance Rás
Luke Roberts Olympic & World Champion, Kuota-Indeland Germany
2004 Olympic team pursuit champion Luke Roberts is one of five strong riders who have been confirmed as representing the Germany Kuota-Indeland team in next month’s FBD Insurance Rás.

The Australian is a hugely experienced track competitor, having also won several world championships plus a Commonwealth Games title in that discipline.

32 year old Roberts has also had a strong career on the road, riding with the top-ranked Team CSC for three seasons. He has taken individual stages in the Drei Länder Tour, the Giro del Capo, Rheinland-Pfalz Rundfahrt and the Tour of Normandie and, together with his CSC squad, won team time trials in the Eindhoven ProTour event plus the Tour of the Mediterranean.

In 2007 he was runner-up on stage two of the Tour of Britain and finished third overall, while two years earlier he was seventh on a stage of the Tour de France. He is likely to be one of the strongest competitors in this year’s event and will be closely watched by the other teams. More>>

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