Coleraine Giro Crit Race - Wed 7 May

07 May 2014
On Wednesday 7th May Ballymena RC - Chain Reaction sent a six man team to ride in a pre Giro Crit in Coleraine promoted by Bann Wheelers CC.  With a mix of youth and experience in the team it was agreed that we would ride conservatively in the early stages to see how the race was to unfold.  Promoting club Bann Wheelers were, as expected, first to launch an all out assault in the form of Bobby Kane, who was quickly closed down by the Ballymoney CC riders.  After about 20mins racing the front end of the race was somewhat reduced in numbers to around 15 of which Ballymena RC still had all 6 guys.  The next serious move came when again Bobby Kane, Gerard McNally (Bann Valley) and Ryan Orr (Ballymoney CC) established a small gap, there was a number of attempts from behind to make contact with these 3 of which none was successful until Nigel Quigley (Bann Wheelers) and BRC's David Dougan got across to make a lead group of 5. Unfortunately with the firepower of Cathal Doyle (Carn Wheelers) in the chase group this group was soon reeled back in and the flurry of attacking began again with Devon McIlwaine and Stevie McAllister ( both Ballymoney CC) and George Graham and Simon Taggart (both BRC) particularly active and the rest of the guys keeping a close eye on proceedings at the sharp end.  In the end a 3 man group did escape and survived to the finish with Ryan Orr taking the verdict ahead of Nigel Quigley and Cathal Doyle, Simon Taggart narrowly missed getting onto this group, closing to within 30mtrs at one point but just couldn't get there.  In the end BRC claimed the Team Prize placing 5 riders, Simon Taggart, Ryan Shaw, George Graham, Clifford Grant and Matthew Brennan, in the top 10, which bodes well for the Ras Donegal.  On the whole it was an incredible nights racing with a very fast flowing course completely closed off to all traffic, a massive crowd who cheered and shouted encouragement for the whole hour regardless of what kit the rider was wearing, an awesome PA system which blasted out tunes adding the festival feel.  A massive congratulations and thanks to the Bann Wheelers CC organising committee, the marshals, their sponsors and Coleraine Council for putting on an event to showcase the sport of cycling when we are in the spot light!!!