“Track training cost me at Euro Road Champs, but I learnt a lot”

Posted on: August 14th, 2015

Ciara Doogan in action during the European Junior Track Championships in Estonia last month. The Errigal CC rider will be one of the favourites for the road race and time-trial in this weekend’s national championships in Co Mayo.


By Brian Canty

Irish junior international Ciara Doogan will be one of the favourites for this weekend’s national junior road race and time-trial championships in Cong, Co Mayo.

The Errigal CC teenager has had a hectic month of training, racing and travel but thankfully for her, this weekend’s action is not far from her home in Donegal.

Doogan rode the European Track Championships in Greece last month before donning the green of Ireland again at the European Road Championships, riding both the road race and time-trial in Estonia last week.

She was 25th of 80 starters and against the clock in Estonia and was 29th of 50 starters; both very good results.

Her ride in the road race was particularly impressive as she held her own in the top section of the field as it whittled down, with no team to assist her.

She admitted her focus on the track prior to the road engagements possibly cost her better results in the Estonia but she was still pleased with how she did.

“I was quiet nervous because it was the biggest race I’ve ridden this year, but I was excited at the same time,” she said.

“I went in there with no pressure and just wanted to give it my best and enjoy the whole experience.


Doogan has been a very promising young rider for a number of years, taking some impressive wins in the youth category as part of the Neenan Travel Talent Team 2020, above.


She said in hindsight she has mixed emotions about the European Road Championships, saying the focus on the track in the period leading up to it undermined her condition for the road.

“Looking back, I was happy with my road race performance but disappointed with the time-trial,” Doogan said.

“But I gained a lot of experience and hope to build on this for the future. I would say, definitely, the training for the track cost me in Estonia.

“They were two big events and it takes time to adjust but there was very little time between the two events.

“Having said that, I’ve definitely learnt a lot this year and gained a lot of experience which I hope I’ll be able to use next year to improve.

“I’ll also be able to concentrate more on the bike next season as I had my Leaving Cert this year and I worked hard for that.”

After the nationals this weekend Doogan plans to do a stage race in Belgium while she’s also going to do Rás na mBan after securing a place on UCI squad Team Rytger.

Her seat on the plane to the US for the World Championships is not secure but one suspects some good performances this weekend as well as in Rás na mBan will get her well over the line.