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5-day route details announced for An Post Rás na mBan
 
By Staff
Date: 7/5/2011
5-day route details announced for An Post Rás na mBan
 
The full route of the An Post Rás na mBan, Ireland’s top international stage race for women is comprised of six stages. The event, which marks the 25th anniversary of international women’s stage racing in Ireland, features some of the most storied climbs in Irish cycle racing in almost 400 kilometers or 249 miles of racing over five days from September 14th to 18th.

With ascents of the Healy Pass, Molls Gap and Coomaciste on its itinerary, An Post Rás na mBan promises to be one of the most challenging stage events for women in these islands.

This year’s event has expanded from three to five days and the race promoter, Cycling Ireland Women’s Commission, has prepared a route set to provide a stern test for race entrants.

Wednesday’s first stage is the shortest road stage at 58km but features the famous climb to Molls Gap which will test riders’ legs right from the start.

Stage two is a daunting 88km loop starting and finishing in Waterville with three tough climbs on the route. Friday’s 82km third stage will take the riders across the fabled Healy Pass, acknowledged as one of the ‘rite of passage’ climbs in Irish cycling.

Saturday’s fourth stage is four laps of a rolling 17km loop around Sneem and Tahilla for a total of 68km with a 2km individual time trial in Sneem that evening.

The concluding stage will ask a lot of weary legs as riders face the longest single stage, a 95km spin from Sneem to Waterville and back including ascents of Coomaciste climb from both sides.

The cream of Ireland's racing talent is set to do battle with international teams and riders from across Europe and beyond in the event which enjoys title sponsorship from An Post this year.

Once again, the event carries valuable financial and personnel support from the Irish Veteran’s Cycling Association.

Race organizer Valerie Considine has designed a route that asks the maximum from both local and international competitors alike; as a result she expects a tough hard battle through the week. “With this route I don’t think any one rider will find it easy to close out the race before the final day,” says Considine.

“For international riders, it’ll be difficult for them to successfully mark all their rivals throughout the week and for county riders, the challenge for many will be to complete what’s set to be a tough course.

The support from An Post, Sneem Hotel and IVCA has helped us to expand to five days and make this a race that is growing in confidence and stature on the calendar."

Last year’s winner Olivia Dillon has already confirmed her intention to defend her title and the US-based Mayo professional rider admits that the organizers have designed a tough route.

“It’s a beautiful and wonderfully demanding route,” says the Kiltimagh native who races for the Peanut Butter & Co Twenty 12 squad in the US. “I normally try to make the most of my visits home but there’ll be not much opportunity for sightseeing this September”

“The roads are some of the prettiest in Ireland but they’re some of the toughest, too. It looks like a really excellent route and I must remember to pack my climbing legs with me!”

Entry details for teams and riders, and accommodation booking is available on the official race website by visiting An Post Rás na mBan.

AN POST RÁS NA MBAN AND SOCIAL MEDIA

♦ Twitter – @rasnamban

♦ Facebook - An Post Rás na mBan

AN POST RÁS NA MBAN STAGES

Stage 1 “Molls Gap” - Wednesday 14/9 Sneem-Kenmare-Derrylea-Sneem - 58km including climb of Moll’s Gap
Molls Gap profile and elevation

Stage 2: “Waterville” - Thursday 15/9
Waterville-Cahirciveen-Valentia-Waterville - 88km including two QOH ascents.
Waterville profile and elevation

Stage 3: “Healy Pass” - Friday 16/9
Kenmare-Healy Pass-Kenmare - 82km - Three QOH ascents including the Healy Pass
Healy Pass profile and elevation

Stage 4: “Tahilla” - Saturday 17/9
Sneem-Tahilla-Sneem Circuit x 4 - 69km rolling roads
Tahilla profile and elevation

Stage 5: “TT” - Saturday 17/9
Sneem Time Trial - N70 to Sneem Village - 2km Flat

Stage 6: “Coomaciste”- Sunday 18/9
Sneem-Waterville-Sneem - 95km including two ascents of Coomaciste
Coomaciste profile and elevation

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