Lavery too strong for revelation Forristal in Coombes-Connor

Posted on: April 15th, 2018

Dubliner Philip Lavery sprints in at the head of the breakaway to win the main Coombes-Connor event. He had also won the same race 12 months ago (Photo: Damian Faulkner)


Philip Lavery has repeated his victory of 12 months ago in the Coombes-Connor Memorial.

He proved too strong from the breakaway at the end of the A1-A2 contest in Julianstown, Co Meath.

The Strata 3-VeloRevolution man has been coming into some great form of late; his Rás Mumhan ride a clear indication of that.

He would reach the finish line today in a three-man breakaway that contained another man who had ridden well over Easter, Paul Forristal.

The Scott-Orwell Wheelers rider is proving something of a revelation, having only taken up racing in the last couple of years.

He claimed two stages in the Gorey Three Day and has now been promoted up the categories.

Despite having little experience riding for the win in A1 races he was to the fore today.

But while Forristal has a very handy turn of speed – as his Gorey stage wins proved – he arrived at the finish today with real quality in Lavery.

And in the end it was Lavery, a former international and ex An Post-Chainreaction rider, who claimed victory.

He comfortably saw off Forristal, with Jody Wright of Phoenix CC rounding out the podium.

Those three were about 20 seconds clear of another three-man group at the finish.

The racing split to pieces in the crosswinds during nine laps of a 14km circuit.

Around the halfway point a breakaway of nine would get clear; the move shaping the race.

And when the lead group split later in the contest the three men who would eventually fill the podium pressed ahead.

They were initially with Darragh McCarter (Donegal Bay CC) to make it four up front.

McCarter won the PJ Logan Cup last month and also put in an excellent ride at the recent Tour of the North.

Based on that form he was a dangerman for Lavery. But McCarter would puncture with about 5km remaining, ending his hopes.

It proved to be the first win of the season for Philip Lavery after several close calls since the start of the campaign.

He was 2nd in the Annaclone GP in recemt weeks. And he claimed 3rd in the Boyne GP and on the queen stage in Kerry over Easter.

Behind the breakaway some very strong riders fought it out for the minor placings in a three-man chase group.

Angus Fyffe (Caldwell Cycles) was best of the rest, ahead of Mark Reilly (Lucan CRC) and Donal Shearer (Phoenix CC).

More to follow.


Sun, April 15: Coombes-Connor Memorial

Julianstown, Co Meath

Promoted by Drogheda Wheelers CC

A1-A2 Race (126km)

  1. Philip Lavery Strata 3-VeloRevolution
  2. Paul Forristal Scott Orwell
  3. Jody Wright Phoenix CC
  4. Angus Fyffe Caldwell Cycles
  5. Mark Reilly Lucan CRC
  6. Donal Shearer Phoenix CC
  7. Cian Delaney Stamullen RC
  8. Mark Quigley Strata 3-VeloRevolution

Unplaced A2

  1. Rob Farrell Lucan CRC
  2. Ryan Callan Lucan CRC
  3. Gareth O’Neill Newry Wheelers
  4. Conor Halvey NRPT-Chill Insurance
  5. Joe Fenlon Strata 3-VeloRevolution


A3 Race

  1. Shay Donley NRPT-Chill Insurance
  2. Mark Smith Sports Room Racing
  3. PJ Doogan Caldwell Cycles
  4. Ciaran Cahoon Clann Eireann
  5. Shane Higgins Sports Room Racing
  6. Aaron Doherty NRPT-Chill Insurance
  7. Aaron Wade Lakeside Wheelers
  8. Eoghan McGee NRPT-Chill Insurance

Unplaced Junior

  1. Ben McCourt Lenehan Drogheda Wheelers


A4 Race

  1. William Goodwin Laois CC
  2. Eoin Ferriter Drogheda Wheelers
  3. Billie Crosby Sundrive Track Team
  4. Kenneth Murray Clonard RC
  5. Sammy Connolly Team 905
  6. Gary McNeill Velo Club Magasin
  7. Alan Geraghty Yellow Furze
  8. Nicholas Appleby Scott Orwell

Unplaced Woman

  1. Ger Powderly Gerry McVeigh Cars