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Video: Ireland’s Darragh O’Mahony off to flying start in France

Posted on: February 17th, 2018

Irish cyclist Darragh O'Mahony

In very tough conditions in the south of France, Darragh O’Mahony has gotten his season abroad off to a flying start. He rode his way onto the podium from the breakaway as the peloton fell apart under the pressure (Photo with thanks to Florine Leplingard)

 

Irish cyclist Darragh O’Mahony flying start in France

 

Having moved to France for the season after a fantastic year at home last year, Darragh O’Mahony has signalled his early season form.

The 20-year-old, now starting his third campaign as an U23 rider, was 3rd in the Grand Prix du Pays d’Aix today.

O’Mahony was among the strong men off the front of the 138km race in Puyricard. Held in the Bouches-du-Rhône department in southern France, it was a elite national-ranked event.

In sodden conditions that O’Mahony would be more used to than his French rivals, the Irish rider was among nine men off the front.

The last 10km were particularly aggressive as thoughts of victory began to take shape.

O’Mahony, riding for Team CC Nogent-sur-Oise, was unlucky to find himself in a group with three riders from the Team Pro Realty Nicolas Roux.

And in the end they made their numerical advantage count up front. Clément Carisey attacked with around 3km to go. He quickly eked out a small gap on O’Mahony and those he was with.

The lone leader would not add to his advantage much before the finish. But it was enough to secure him a solo victory.

Darragh O’Mahony finished in a four-man group just 13 seconds back. The winner’s team mate Mickaël Guichard took the sprint for 2nd, with the Irishman just one second back in 3rd.

The main field was reduced to just 42 riders by the finish. It was 1:38 behind the winner.

 

 

Fellow Irishman Daire Feeley( Union Cycliste de Monaco) was also racing; finishing in 82nd some 13:34 down. He was 15th in the 117km Tour du Centre Var last weekend.

Feeley and O’Mahony are expected to feature on the Irish team for the upcoming U23 Nations Cup races.

They are among the best Irish U23 riders on the road racing scene at present. And having excelled already in recent years they will look to progress in 2018; an important year in the development of both.

 

Good start for Darragh O’Mahony

Today’s result represented a good start to the new campaign for Irish cyclist Darragh O’Mahony. He has relocated to France after winning a string of major races in Ireland last year.

He had been a top junior, representing Ireland up to World Championships level.

And after making the move up to U23 in 2016 he quickly established himself in senior racing and broke into the national U23 set-up.

His best win last year was the Des Hanlon Memorial. Further victories came in the Newbridge GP, DeRonde Classic, Rás Luimni and a stage of the Tour of Ulster where he was 3rd overall.

He also took 4th and 7th on stages of the An Post Rás, which he rode on the Irish team.

Moreover, he would ride very well in the green of Ireland at the Tour de l’Avenir; going on the attack in a brave bid for a stage win.

 

Sat, Feb 17th: Grand Prix du Pays d’Aix (138km)

1 Clément Carisey (Pro Realty Nicolas Roux) 3:19:33 (41.493kmph)
2 Mickael Guichard (Pro Realty Nicolas Roux) 13 secs
3 Darragh O’Mahony (CC Nogent sur Oise) 14
4 Vojtech Sedlacek (CC Etupes)
5 Rafaelle Radice (Cycling Team T & P Dellio Gallina)
6 Lauk Karl Patrick (Pro Realty Nicolas Roux) 26
7 Matthew Garnier (CC Etupes) 30
8 Aurelian Lionnet (CR4C Roanne) 31
9 Alexys Brunel (CC Etupes) 34
10 Sebastien Havot (CC Nogent sur Oise) 1:38

 

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