Ben Healy, Lara Gillespie best of Irish in Euro Road Champs TTs

Posted on: July 14th, 2018

Michael O’Loughlin grimaces as he puts the power down in the U23 TT at the Euros in the Czech Republic.


Ireland’s national junior time trial champion Ben Healy was best of the Irish in the TTs at the junior and U23 European Road Championships.

Healy was 14th fastest over the 23km course in Zlin in the Czech Republic. He was 2:19 down on winner and new champion Remco Evenepoel.

The other Irish rider in the junior men’s race, Aaron Doherty, was one of four rides disqualified from the event.

In the men’s U23 test Michael O’Loughlin and Conn McDunphy, who were 1st and 2nd respectively at the recent national championships, were in action for Ireland.

McDunphy was 18th in the 23km race, some 1:43 down on winner Edoardo Affini of Italy. And O’Loughlin was 20th, just 13 seconds slower than his compatriot.

In the women’s junior race, Lara Gillespie was Ireland’s sole representative.

She finished in 17th place in the 11.5km race against the watch. Gillespie was 58 seconds down on winner Vittoria Guazzini of Italy.

In the junior men’s race the riders had two laps of the fast 11.5km course to contend with.

Belgian national champion Evenepoel, who has won Corsa della Pace, the Trophée Centre Morbihan and the GP Général Patton this season, clocked 29:51, for an average speed of 46.23kmph.

Another Belgian, Ilan Van Wilder, was 2nd some 24 second back. And Italian Antonio Tiberi took bronze, 40 seconds off the winner.

The U23 TT winner, Affini, recently won the gold at the Mediterranean Games in the TT and road race.

He is also Italian TT champion and was European junior champion in the road race in 2014. He covered two laps of the TT course in 29:26, for an average of 46.89 kmph.

Slovenian Izidor Penko was next, 26 seconds slower. Austrian Markus Wildauer was 3rd in a time of 29:58.

The junior and U23 men’s tests took place yesterday while Gillespie was in action on Thursday.

Today, Saturday, the junior and U23 women ride their road races; over 75.6km and 108km respectively. Gillespie is the only Irish rider in action today.