News Shorts: Irish trio Eddie Dunbar, Conor Dunne and Ryan Mullen

Posted on: March 30th, 2019
Ryan Mullen missed some early spring racing due to illness. But he’s been back in action again and has a very good programme coming up with his Trek-Segafredo WorldTour team.

Ryan Mullen is down to start Gent-Wevelgem this weekend after a return to racing last week following a period of illness.

The Trek-Segafredo man started training again two weeks ago after his lay-off. He has since ridden four races, on the cobbles in Belgium and in France.

He was 137th in Danilith Nokere Koerse (1.HC) on March 20th and placed 56th in Bredene Koksijde Classic (1.HC) two days later.

Last Sunday he lined-up in France for Grand Prix de Denain-Porte du Hainaut (1.HC), finishing 40th.

And on Wednesday he was 151st at Driedaagse Brugge-De Panne (1.UWT); good preparation for Sunday.

Along with Gent-Wevelgem in his provisional programme are: Dwars door Vlaanderen (1.UWT) on April 3rd, the Tour of Flanders (1.UWT) four days later and Scheldeprijs (1.HC) on April 10th.

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Irish champion Conor Dunne in action in Belgium yesterday with Heinrich Haussler of Bahrain Merida just behind him on the exposed incline (Photo: Fabienne Vanheste)

After lining out in Milan-Sanremo last Saturday, when he finished the Italian classic in 135th, Conor Dunne was back in action yesterday in Belgium.

The Irish road race champion, riding for Israel Cycling Academy, lining out in the 204km E3 BinckBank Classic (1.UWT).

The race was won from a breakaway by Zdeněk Štybar (Deceuninck-QuickStep). Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) continued his strong spring, on a back of a hard cyclocross season, with 2nd place.

Greg Van Avermaet (CCC Team) was 3rd; victory decided in a sprint from a four-man group that also included Alberto Bettiol (EF Education First).

Conor Dunne finished in 67th some 3:46 down on a day when 99 riders finished and 80 abandoned.

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Eddie Dunbar is another Irish rider, like Mullen, coming back after a forced lay-off. He has been building his race condition in Italy racing with Team Sky.

Eddie Dunbar’s return to racing after a crash is continuing at the Italian stage race Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali (2.1).

Yesterday’s stage 3 was 166.2km starting and finishing in Forlì and run over seven laps of a circuit with one short sharp climb on each loop.

Dunbar’s Team Sky did much of the pace-setting on the final lap, hoping to move its riders up the general classification.

However, while they put Kenny Elissonde in the breakaway and then tried to split the field when the escape was caught, the honours came down to sprint.

The stage was won by Simone Velasco (Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia-KTM), though the hard racing and lumpy course had reduced the peloton right down to just 45 riders.

In a sign that he is building his form again, Eddie Dunbar was in that group and finished in 28th place.

The race is still being led by Lucas Hamilton of Mitchelton-Scott; the team that won the opening TTT. Dunbar is 61st at 10:28 with two stages remaining.

Today the penultimate stage is pan flat and should suit the sprinters or a breakaway before a hilly final stage tomorrow, Sunday, that should suit Eddie Dunbar.

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