Australian road international in process of declaring for Ireland

Posted on: November 4th, 2016

Australia’s loss is just about to become Ireland’s gain as the Irish team will add a very talented rider to the list it can pick from for both road and track Irish teams. Above, Robert Jon McCarthy wins a stage in the Herald Sun Tour in 2014.


Having won a stage of the An Post Rás and the Herald Sun Tour in Australia, Robert John McCarthy is one the comeback trail and is about to declare for Ireland.

McCarthy stepped away from cycling last year having ridden for a season with An Post-Chainreaction and then moved on to SEG Racing.

He rode for SEG, where Dan Martin’s father Neil is one of the key management figures, last year but become disillusioned with pro cycling and returned to Australia.

Of late he has been back on his bike, mixing road cycling with MTB and some cyclocross in Australia.

He appears to be rediscovering his love for the sport and has form, having last weekend won the Flinders 205 Outback Epic and broke the course record.

McCarthy is Irish-born and is originally from Fermoy, Co Cork, but moved with his family to Australia when he was aged 14 years.

He showed great promised from the time he started racing and as junior he won the Australian national road title in a sprint from Caleb Ewan, who is now one of the world’s top sprinters at WorldTour level.

McCarthy, who will leave the U23 ranks as of January 1st, has been an Australian international on road and track, riding the Nations Cup on the road for Australia and also competing in the road and track World Championships in the Australian team.


Winning the Australian junior national road race title in 2012 from Caleb Ewan; a victory that helped secure Worlds selection.


However, he now plans to reconnect more with the country of his birth and is in the process of declaring for Ireland. He would be eligible to ride for Ireland on both road and track.

He says riding the track in the green of Ireland is something he would to do as well as road race.

During his junior years he rode a lot of track races and took podium finishes against riders who have emerged as major international names in the team pursuit, omnium and scratch race.

For now he will continue to train and do some racing in Australia as he attempts to rebuild physical condition lost during his lay-off from the sport.

The 22-year-old has today, Friday, been announced as a member of the JLT Condor UK-based Continental team for next year; a squad his cousin David McCarthy rode for this year.

Another Irish cousin, Eoin McCarthy, rode for An Post-Chainreaction last year and took part in some of the same Nations Cup races; Robert Jon riding for Australia and Eoin for Ireland.

In 2014 Robert Jon won stage 3 of the Herald Sun Tour in Australia while riding on the national team and also took the opening stage and first yellow jersey of the Rás when riding for An Post-Chainreaction.