Eddie Brennan takes aggressive Belmullet GP win from the front

Posted on: May 7th, 2018

On a tough day for racing, with crosswinds splitting the field, Dublin Wheelers man Eddie Brennan made his trip west worthwhile by winning the Belmullet GP (Photo: Damien Conway)


Eddie Brennan Dublin Wheelers wins Belmullet GP, Co Mayo


He may have been a long way from his club’s base in the capital, but Dublin Wheelers man Eddie Brennan had no difficulty getting his bearings in Co Mayo yesterday.

At the end of the Belmullet GP he saw off the challenge of one of the most successful riders from the county in recent years; Paddy Clarke.

However, while Clarke has won many A1 races during his career and raced for several seasons in Belgium, Brennan had the measure of him yesterday.

He would take a clear win, from Clarke, after both of them had started in the scratch group. They caught and went through all of the groups scattered on the road ahead of them.

And when just the two of them forged clear in the latter stages of the race; Brennan hit out from the front with 4km remaining to take a solo victory.

With a maiden the Rás now beckoning for the 34-year-old, it was a good time to take his first A1 win.

Brennan came into cycling from a triathlon background about six years ago; claiming the Wexford Two Day A4 event in his first season.

And while he has been upgraded along the way, 2018 marks his first year starting at A1 level; a factor that encouraged him towards a Rás ride.

He rides the Rás with the Collins Cycle Centre Race Team. It features riders from a variety of clubs including Keith Fox, Conor McCann, Connor Lambert and PJ Collins.

Yesterday’s race was run off in windy conditions on exposed and undulating terrain, causing splits from the outset.

And with the scratch group having a gap of seven minutes to close to the A3 limit men over the three-lap 95km race, they needed to be business-like from the start.

The eventual winner and runner-up would break clear in an initial six-man group from the A1 riders.

However, with the pressure on and the wind blowing; that was down to just two men – Brennan and Clarke – by the time they made the juncture with the last of the A3s with a lap remaining.

Not content to hang around in that group, and clearly on an excellent day; Brennan was again the one forcing the issue.

He attacked and this time Clarke went with him; with a Ballina CC team mate for company initially.


Winning attacks

However, on seeing he was clear with two team mates, Brennan attacked again. And this time only Clarke could match him.

The two riders then pulled clear all the way into the final 5km, off the circuit and into the finish.

With about 4km remaining Brennan decided he didn’t want to wait for a sprint finish. He attacked his fellow escapee; riding clear of him for a solo victory.

There followed two A3 riders in 3rd and 4th; Michael Cox (Unattached) and David Coleman (Ballina CC).

James McGreevy (Westport Covey), an A1 rider, was 5th. And A2 man Damien Creighton rounded out the top six for Ballina CC.


Sun, May 6: Belmullet GP

Promoted by Belmullet Cycling Club

A1-A2-A3 Race

  1. Eddie Brennan Dublin Wheelers
  2. Patrick Clarke Ballina CC
  3. Michael Cox Unattached
  4. David Coleman Ballina CC
  5. James McGreevy Westport Covey
  6. Damien Creighton Ballina CC


A4 Race

  1. Feibhlim Dignan Cunga CC
  2. Nicolas Carolan Limwrick CC
  3. Mel McShane Unattached
  4. Oisin McAvock Ballina CC

Leading Woman

  1. Lorraine Mulchrone – Westport Covey