Cathal Moynihan of Tralee Manor West BC stole all the plaudits on stage one of KerryGroup Ras Mumhan today, finishing at the head of the race after 105kms of racing with a start and finish in Killorglin.
Moynihan a former Olympian rower in Beijing (2008) was part of a breakaway group of 11 who inched ahead of the main pack as the race of 196 starters entered the town of Castlisland with 30 odd kilometers to go the finish.
On paper it looked as t if Sean Lacey of Aqua Blue a former winner in 2010 of the Kerry Group event had the outstanding qualifications to land the stage and the first yellow jersey. Immediately the group organised themselves and quickly built a lead of over a minute. Going through Milltown with seven kilometers left on the clock the pursuit from the main pack started their fight back to over haul the leaders.
With two kilometers left to the line Cathal went for broke and despite the best efforts of the original break, he held out to claim his biggest win since swtching from the boat to the bike. At the finish he said ~it was better than getting wet as a rower for many years. I’ll have a chat with the team this evening and see what plans will be put in place to defend the jesey on stage two in Kenmare at noon tomorrow, said Cathal as he was surrounded by family and well wishers.
The route takes in the Healy Pass, Glengarriff, Ballingeary, Ballyvourney, Kilgarvan, and back to the finish in Kenmare after 145 tough kilometers.
Stage one sponsored by Chaseresources-105kms.
1 Cathal Moynihan-Tralee Manor West BC, 2hrs.14mins.51 secs;
2 Sjors Dekker-West Frisa, @8 secs;
3 Jack Pullar-Scotland, @17 secs;
4 Chis Reilly-Liquidworx Fitscience, @18secs;
5 Tino Haakman-West Fresia, @same time;
6 Ben Cart-Felt Colbornes, same time.
King of Hills
1 Grant Ferguson-Scotland.
1 Cathal Moynihan-Tralee West Manor BC.
Bryan Long-St. Finbarrs-Centra.