Apr 26, 2007
Strong US Professional Teams Announced For FBD Insurance Rás
Two more top notch teams have been added to the impressive lineup of this year’s FBD Insurance Rás, with the announcement that Continental squads USA KodakGallery.com-Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and USA Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast Pro Cycling will be competing in the race.
|Jesse Anthony Under 23 Cyclocross Nation Champion|
Both teams will travel to the 2.2 ranked Irish tour with high ambitions, and race director Dermot Dignam expects a strong showing.
“Last year the USA-TIAA CREF team went close to winning the event, with former world under 23 champion Danny Pate taking second in the closest-ever FBD Insurance Rás,” he said. “We believe that the KodakGallery.com-Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast Pro Cycling teams will also be a major factor, and look forward to see their riders fighting for stage wins and the overall classification.
The USA KodakGallery.com-Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. team will be led by three very experienced riders. Reigning Canadian national champion Dominique Rollin will take part, fresh from his successes in the Comcast Jacksonville Crit (NRC) and Jacksonville Road Race. More>>
Apr 18, 2007
Strong Danish And Australian Teams Confirmed For FBD Insurance Rás
Just one month remains before the start of the FBD Insurance Rás and two more strong overseas Continental (pro) teams have been confirmed for the race.
|Peter Herzig FRF Australia NSWIS in the Mountains Jersey 2006|
Danish riders are making a return after several years’ absence with the entry of the Denmark-Team Vision Bikes squad. Managed by former CSC professional Jimmi Madsen, the lineup comprises Benjamin Justesen, Simon Lerbech, Michael Johansen, Mads Bugge Andersen and Thomas Bendixen.
“The team will be after stage victories,” said Madsen who, during his own career, rode the Tour of Italy and took bronze medals in the Olympic and world championship team pursuit. “Watch out for Michael Johansen in long breakaways, and Benjamin Justesen and Simon Lerbech in the hills and maybe even in the overall classification, if things go that way.”
Justesen is a strong climber and last month placed third in the King of the Mountains classification in the 1.2 Classic Loire Atlantique. He is also a good mountainbike rider, winning four out of the six stages plus the overall classification in the Danish mountainbike winter trophy series. The 27 year old clocks in at just 55 kilos in weight and Madsen feels he will be a contender for the Mountains jersey in the FBD Insurance Rás. More>>
Apr 11, 2007
Estonians To Return In Search Of FBD Insurance Rás Success
Yet another strong overseas team has been confirmed for this year’s FBD Insurance RÁS, which begins in just over a month’s time in Naas.
|Mart Ojavee Kalve Chocolate Estonia|
The Continental (pro) team Kalev Chocolate are travelling to the race from Estonia, two years after making a good impression during the 2005 edition of the gruelling eight day race.
Then, team leader Sigvard Kukk took six top fifteen places en route to 11th overall, including placings of eighth, seventh and seventh on stages one, two and seven. His good form meant that team-mate Mart Ojavee was riding in his service during the event, but he nevertheless placed thirteenth on stage four.
With Kukk no longer with the team, 26 year old Ojavee has an excellent opportunity to chase personal success in the race. He will lead the strong squad, lining out with Andrei Mustonen, Alo Jakin, Silvar Kibur and Markku Ainsalu. More>>
Apr 6, 2007
2000 Olympic Champion Heads German Pro Squad For FBD Insurance Rás
Former Olympic gold medallist and three time Tour de France rider Daniel Becke will lead a highly promising Germany - Thûringer Energie squad in this year’s FBD Insurance Rás, which starts in Naas on Sunday May 20th.
|Daniel Becke Olympic champion 2000|
Becke was part of the German squad which won the Olympic team pursuit in 2000. He is hugely experienced, having raced with the top-level Bianchi, Caisse d’Epargne-Iles Balears and Team Milram squads in recent seasons. He started the Tour de France in the years from 2003 to 2005, and took five top-20 placings on stages.
Becke moved to the German Continental team at the end of 2006 and will be mixing road and track competition during this year. He finished 11th in the individual pursuit at the world track championships in Majorca last Thursday. More>>
Mar 21, 2007
Strong Czech Team Confirmed For FBD Insurance Rás
With the start of the FBD Insurance Rás now less than two months away, race organiser Dermot Dignam has announced the identity of the first of several UCI-ranked Continental teams expected to take part in the race.
The Czech Republic - AC Sparta Praha team have been confirmed for the start in Naas on Sunday May 20th, and will be trying to improve upon the performances posted by compatriots Czech Republic – Elmarco KK Cube in 2005.
Mar 4, 2007
FBD Insurance Rás Hit By UCI Regulations
In what will come as a major disappointment to many of Ireland’s top professional cyclists FBD Insurance RÁS organiser, Dermot Dignam, has announced a total ban on mixed team teams involving professional and domestic riders. It will be recalled that last year top pro and former RÁS winner, Ciaran Power, competed on a special representative Dan Morrissey Eireann team, which also included Tipperary county riders.
|Professional Ciaran Power riding for Tipperery 2006|
It is believed a number of our top pros, particularly those racing in the United States, planned to initiate similar teams this year but Dignam’s decision scuppers any such intentions. More>>
Jan 31, 2007
Exciting Route Unveiled For 2007 FBD Insurance Rás
Eight months after the closest race in the 54 year history of the event, the organisers of the FBD Insurance RÁS have released details of the route for this year’s race which certainly contains all the ingredients necessary for an equally thrilling finale to the 2007 edition. The event will take place from Sunday 20th to Sunday 27th May.
|Dermot Dignam Race Organiser|
A first ever race start in the prosperous Kildare town of Naas, thrilling stage finishes in Templemore, Loughrea, Sligo, Dungloe, Buncrana, Derry, Newcastle and a grand finale in Skerries provides the landscape for almost 1200 kilometres of highly competitive racing. Add in twenty King of the Mountain climbs and a crushing 174 kilometres final stage and everything is in place for the expected field of 150 top professional and amateur riders to slug it out for another cliffhanger finish to the 8 day world-ranked FBD RÁS.
“Once again this year, through the generous sponsorship of FBD Insurance, the Irish sporting public will have the opportunity of seeing the very best Irish cyclists doing battle over Irish roads with national and professional teams from many parts of the world,” said organiser Dermot Dignam this week. More>>
Jan 29, 2007
FBD Insurance Rás Route To Be Announced On Friday
The route for this year’s FBD Insurance RÁS, due to be announced on Friday (2nd February) looks certain to include what is reckoned to be the steepest mountain climb in the country. The dramatic Mamore Gap on the Inishowen Peninsula is expected to feature in one of two stages to take place in the rugged countryside of Donegal.
|Tommy Evans 1996|
It is also generally believed that at least two cross-border towns are to be included as stage finishes in a route which focuses very much on the northern end of the country. In 1996 Briton Jeff Wright won into Newry, the last time a town north of the border featured in the race. Perhaps as a pointer to the outcome of this year’s race Banbridge-man Tommy Evans was the overall victor in ’96. More>>
Nov 20, 2006
FBD Assures Rás
FBD Will again sponsor Ireland's international cycle race,the FBD Insurance RÁS,when it takes to the highways and byways on the country from 20th. to 27th. May next year. This will be the insurances company's 24th. year of sponsorship of this great race. More>>