Late raid by Mark Dowling wins the day at Tour of Ulster

Posted on: May 6th, 2019
Mark Dowling, Cycling Leinster, celebrates taking victory at the finish of stage 3 of the Victus Tour of Ulster, Banbridge, Co Down (Photo: Stephen McMahon – Tour of Ulster)

The Cycling Leinster team completed a clean sweep of stage wins at the Tour of Ulster today, but nothing could stop Conor Hennebry winning the overall title.

Mark Dowling (Cycling Leinster) came through to win stage 3, after his team mates Fintan Ryan and JM Murphy had claimed the first and second stages.

The final stage today was run over seven laps of a course just over 10 miles in length and was dominated by a breakaway that went clear just before the halfway point.

Sean Moore (Bio-DHL-FRS), Darnell Moore (Caldwell Cycles) and Roger Aiken (Banbridge Composite) opened a gap but were kept close by the chasing pack, only ever pulling out about one minute.

Hennebry paused for a victory salute but was still 9th in the sprint to the line (Photo: Shea Gribbon)

On the fifth lap Matthew Clarke (Foran) & Gareth O’Neill (Newry Wheelers CC) went after the leaders but failed to bridge the gap.

And in the final kilometre the trio up front were caught, leaving Dowling to come through and take stage victory.

He got the verdict from John Buller (Bio-DHL-FRS) and Charlie Prendergast (Strata 3-VeloRevolition).

Conor Murnane (UCD Cycling Club) was 4th and Lindsay Watson was 5th; the Powerhouse Sport man also winning the king of the hills title this year.

However, Conor Hennebry (Dan Morrissey-MIG-Pactimo) had finished 4th on the opening stage and 2nd yesterday; the only main in the race sprinting for victory both days.

The combined time he gained on those two stages put him in the leader’s pink jersey after yesterday’s stage.

And today he and his team mates defended the lead, meaning Hennebry ran out the overall winner of the Victus Tour of Ulster for the second time in his career.

Hennebry was comfortable in the end, placing 9th on the final stage today in the same time as winner Dowling.