An Post Rás: De Pauw wins, Bialoblocki put under pressure by late attack by McConvey and Guldhammer
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Thursday, May 23, 2013

An Post Rás: De Pauw wins, Bialoblocki put under pressure by late attack by McConvey and Guldhammer

by Shane Stokes at 6:54 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results, Video
 
Video: Polish rider almost loses race lead on stage five of race, top three riders locked on same time

Moreno De PauwLaunching an attack in the final four kilometres of an otherwise tightly controlled stage, Irishman Connor McConvey (Synergy Baku) and the Dane Rasmus Guldhammer (Blue Water Cycling) put Marcin Bialoblocki’s yellow jersey under serious threat on today’s fifth stage of the An Post Rás.

The duo had started the day second and third overall, deadlocked on time with UK Youth Pro Cycling rider Bialoblocki. Their late move close to the line in Mitchelstown saw them quickly gain eight seconds on the rest of the bunch and, combining with the Belgian national team rider Moreno De Pauw, they rode hard to try to stay clear.

They did indeed hit the line first, with De Pauw outsprinting Guldhammer and McConvey on the uphill drag to the line, but hard chasing by the bunch saw An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly rider Nicholas Vereecken and the rest of the bunch finish immediately behind them.

While De Pauw gained a second, the others were in the same time as twelfth-placed Bialoblocki, who held on to yellow.

“Today is probably the real first day we went on the offensive, in terms of getting rid of Marcin,” said a motivated McConvey after the stage. “We were really, really close to pulling it off. If the Belgian guy had done a little more work we would have had a time gap.”

Things had played out perfectly for the race leader up until that point, with everything indicating it would be a bunch sprint at the end of the 150.2 kilometre leg. After a number of early attacks, Michael Northey (Britain Node4 Giordana) got clear 40 kilometres after the start in Glengarriff and was joined by the Kiwi rider Shane Archbold (An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly), who won stage two on Monday.

Working solidly together, they opened a maximum lead of over two and a half minutes. Archbold had dropped from second to twelfth yesterday when he had a mechanical problem close to the finish and lost one minute 45 seconds. The time gained today saw him become race leader on the road, but steady riding by the teams of Bialoblocki and Guldhammer kept things under control. The gap was gradually whittled down and it became clear the duo wouldn’t stay away.

Archbold knew the bunch was getting closer and he pushed ahead of Northey with 23 kilometres remaining. He was caught soon afterwards by a surge by Alexander Schrangl (Austria Arbo Gebruder Weiss) and Irish county rider Thomas Lavery (Waterford Comeragh), who carried Northey back up to him.

The fresher duo pushed on ahead but were ultimately reeled in nine kilometres from the line. McConvey and Guldhammer then made their move five kilometres later and very nearly deposed the race leader.

De Pauw knew that they were both seeking to gain time and was able to profit from the situation and to nab the stage win. “We had immediately a small gap, but never really a big gap, so we really had to give it everything,” he told VeloNation in the video below. “In the last kilometre I started pokering a bit – I know I normally have a really good sprint. I started sprinting just before the last corner with 400 metres to go and I held it until the finish…it’s really good.”



The track specialist is riding the race in order to build his strength for velodrome racing, but proved today that he is well able to perform on the road too.

His goal for the remainder of the race is to ensure that the team is again successful. “We have Jasper De Buyst in eleventh place [up to tenth after stage five – ed.] Maybe we can keep him in the top ten in the general. We hope for maybe other stage win or something like that – that would be amazing.”

Bialoblocki sought to play down the signficance of the move, saying that he had an ‘easy day,’ but it was clear that he found himself under pressure. He’ll try to keep a closer eye on those rivals over the remaining three days in the race, while they will seek to exploit any lapses in concentration or form on his part.

How it played out:


The fifth stage of the An Post Rás looked set to be a more straightforward one than the mountainous leg which preceded it. It featured three climbs during the 150.2 kilometre distance, but the day looked set to be an easier one for the tiring rider.

Those ascents were the category two climbs of Keimaneigh (km 25) and Gortnabinna (km 37.7), then later the category three Kildorrey (km 137.9). The latter came just 12.1 kilometres from the finish in Mitchelstown.

A total of 143 riders started in bright weather conditions, with 23 riders missing from the sheet due to their missing the time cut yesterday. It was a controversial decision, with some being critical of the commissaire’s strict enforcement of the time limit. The race was historically associated with the amateur county rider, and is unique in the number of those which race each year against professional and international competitors.

Very soon after the drop of the flag in Glengarriff Kenny de Ketele (Belgium national team) attacked and was joined by Elliott Porter (Britain Rapha Condor JLT). Ronan McLaughlin (An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly) and Rico Rogers (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku).

However they were caught twelve kilometres into the stage. The peloton then raced onto the Pass of Keimaneigh climb (km 25), where former King of the Mountains leader Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha) began his push to try to recoup the jersey from the rider who took it off him yesterday, Michael Cuming (Britain Rapha Condor JLT).

They were first and second at the summit, with Hunal reducing his fourteen point deficit by two points. De Ketele and John Ebsen (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku) were third and fourth.

Stuart Henry (Down Chainreaction cycles) attacked on the roads between there and the start of the second climb, the category two Gortnabinna (km 37.7). He was however hauled back before the prime, where Hunal again won, beating John Ebsen (Azerbaijan) and Porter.

Cumming was only fourth there, conceding another six points to Hunal and thus seeing his advantage drop to six points.

Soon after the top Michael Northey (Britain Node4 Giordana) jumped ahead, his move coming 40 kilometres after the start. He built an eight second lead but was joined soon afterwards by stage two winner Shane Archbold (An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly).

The latter had been second overall going into yesterday’s stage, but had mechanical issues near the end and dropped to tenth overall, one minute and 39 seconds behind race leader Marcin Bialoblocki (Britain UK Youth Pro Cycling).

Tim Barry (Cork Aquablue) made a big effort to try to get across, but the attempt was unsuccessful. Archbold and Northey continued to gain time and had an advantage of two minutes and fifteen seconds 62 kilomeres in. Five kilometers later, this went up to a maximum of two minutes 35 seconds, but strong winds were making their task a difficult one.

After 117 kilometres of racing the gap was down to one minute and ten seconds. Just over thirty kilometres remained at that point and a bunch sprint looked more and more likely, although those who wanted to try to steal a march on the bunch knew that the category three of Kildorrey might offer a slight chance to get clear. This would come 12.1 kilometres from the line, though, thus likely giving the bunch time to haul groups back.

With 25 kilometres to go the break’s advantage was down to 40 seconds. Two kilometres later Archbold dropped Northey and tried to go it alone. The latter was caught soon after by two attackers, Alexander Schrangl (Austria Arbo Gebruder Weiss) and Thomas Lavery (Waterford Comeragh), and bridged up to Archbold with 20 kilometres remaining.

The bunch was just sixteen seconds back at that point, though, and Archbold decided to sit up and wait for the bunch.

Northey sat up a couple of kilometres later, but the others persisted and raced onto the base of the King of the Hills climb with a lead of seventeen seconds. This temporarily increased to twenty seconds, dropped to seven, increased to fifteen and was then snuffed out with nine kilometres to go, but not before Schrangl and Lavery took first and second at the top of Kildorrey.

Hunal and Cuming were third and fourth, with the former continuing to eat away at the Rapha Condor JLT riders’s lead and inch closer to the jersey he lost yesterday.

After the break was caught, several other attacks were fired off. The elastic finally snapped with four kilometres to go and was a very dangerous move for the race leader as the riders who were second and third overall, Connor McConvey (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku) and Rasmus Guldhammer (Denmark Blue Water) were in the move, along with the Belgium national team rider Moreno De Pauw.

McConvey and Guldhammer had started the day level on time with Bialoblocki, and when they opened an eight second lead with three kilometres to go, alarm bells were ringing.

De Pauw missed a couple of turns at the front to save energy and then jumped hard with 400 metres to go, opening a gap prior to the final corner. He went flat out from there to the line and reached it one second clear of Guldhammer and McConvey, grabbing the win.

Crucially for Bialoblocki, Nicholas Vereecken (An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly) led home the front part of the bunch in the same time as the Guldhammer and McConvey; with the race leader tagged onto this group, it meant that he held onto the jersey.

He’ll be in yellow again tomorrow but with his two rivals sensing opportunity, stage six to Carlow could be a very aggressive one.



An Post Ras (2.2)

Stage 5, Glengarriff to Mitchelstown:


1, Moreno De Pauw (Belgium National Team) 150.2 kilometres in 3 hours 36 mins 25 secs
2, Rasmus Guldhammer (Denmark Blue Water Cycling) at 1 sec
3, Connor McConvey (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku)
4, Nicholas Vereecken (Belgium An Post Chain Reaction)
5, Benjamin Edmuller (Austria Arbo Gebrder Weiss)
6, Owain Doull (Great Britain National Team)
7, Rico Rogers (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku)
8, Dan Barry (Britain Node4 Giordana Racing)
9, Sam Bennett (Belgium An Post Chain Reaction)
10, Morten Oellegaard (Denmark Blue Water Cycling)
11, Jasper De Buyst (Belgium National Team)
12, Marcin Bialoblocki (Britain Uk Youth Pro Cycling)
13, Daniel Foder (Denmark Blue Water Cycling)
14, Philipp Becker (Germany Bike Aid - Schwalbe) all same time
15, Steve Lampier (Britain Node4 Giordana Racing) at 7 secs


Category two climb of Pass of Keimaneigh (km 25):

1, Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha) 10 pts
2, Michael Cuming (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) 8
3, Kenny De Ketele (Belgium National Team) 6
4, John Ebsen (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku) 4
5, Rob Partridge (Britain Uk Youth Pro Cycling) 3
6, Michael Northey (Britain Node4 Giordana Racing) 1


Category two climb of Gortnabinna (km 37.7):

1, Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha) 10 pts
2, John Ebsen (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku) 8
3, Elliott Porter (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) 6
4, Michael Cuming (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) 4
5, Peter Williams (Britain Team Ig - Sigma Sport) 3
6, Richard Handley (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) 1

Category three climb of Kildorrey (km 137.9):

1, Alexander Schrangl (Austria Arbo Gebrder Weiss) 54
2, Thomas Lavery (Waterford Comeragh)
3, Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha) 3
4, Michael Cuming (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) 2

County Rider:

1, Mehall Fitzgerald (Tipperary Visit Nenagh.Ie Dmg) 3 hours 36 mins 32 secs
2, Roger Aiken (Louth Prague Charter Team)
3, Bryan Mccrystal (Louth Prague Charter Team) both same time

International team:

1, Denmark Blue Water Cycling, 10 hours 49 mins 18 secs
2, Belgium National team, 10 hours 49 mins 23 secs
3, Belgium An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly, 10 hours 49 mins 24 secs
4, Azerbaijan Synergy Baku, same time
5, Great Britain national team, 10 hours 49 mins 30 secs

County team:

1, Louth Prague Charter, 10 hours 49 mins 48 secs
2, Cork Aquablue
3, Dublin West Eurocycles, both same time
4, Meath Dunboyne DID, 10 hours 50 mins
5, Tipperary Visit Nenagh.ie, 10 hours 50 mins 55 secs


Overall classification after five stages:


1, Marcin Bialoblocki (Britain Uk Youth Pro Cycling) 16 hours 41 mins 55 secs
2, Connor McConvey (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku)
3, Rasmus Guldhammer (Denmark Blue Water Cycling) both same time
4, Richard Handley (Britain Rapha Condor JLT) at 24 secs
5, Remi Pelletier-Roy (Canada National Team) same time
6, Daniel Foder (Denmark Blue Water Cycling) at 46 secs
7, Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha) at 48 secs
8, Simon Yates (Great Britain National Team) at 52 secs
9, Roger Aiken (Louth Prague Charter Team) same time
10, Jasper De Buyst (Belgium National team) at 1 min 39 secs
11, Sam Bennett (Belgium An Post Chain Reaction) at 1 min 43 secs
12, Shane Archbold (Belgium An Post Chain Reaction) at 1 min 45 secs
13, Steve Lampier (Britain Node4 Giordana Racing) same time
14, Ben Greenwood (Scotland National Team) at 1 min 48 secs
15, Owain Doull (Great Britain National Team) at 2 mins 25 secs

Post Office Sprints:

1, Marcin Bialoblocki (Britain Uk Youth Pro Cycling) 39 pts
2, Owain Doull (Great Britain National Team) 38
3, Rasmus Guldhammer (Denmark Blue Water Cycling) 33
4, Connor McConvey (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku) 32
5, Nicholas Vereecken (Belgium An Post Chain Reaction) 32

One4all Bikes4work King Of The Mountains:

1, Michael Cuming (Britain Rapha Condor JLT)
2, Martin Hunal (Czech Republic Ac Sparta Praha)
3, Richard Handley (Britain Rapha Condor JLT)
4, John Ebsen (Azerbaijan Synergy Baku)
5, Remi Pelletier-Roy (Canada National Team)

Irish Sports Council U23:

1, Simon Yates (Great Britain National Team) 16 hours 42 mins 47 secs
2, Jasper De Buyst (Belgium National Team) at 47 secs
3, Owain Doull (Great Britain National Team) at 1 min 33 secs
4, Joseph Perrett (Britain Team Ig - Sigma Sport) at 1 min 51 secs
5, Alistair Slater (Great Britain National Team) at 1 min 54 secs

Massi Ireland County Rider:

1, Roger Aiken (Louth Prague Charter Team) 16 hours 42 mins 47 secs
2, Damien Shaw (Cork Aquablue) at 3 mins 43 secs
3, Thomas Martin (Dublin West Eurocycles) at 4 mins 55 secs
4, Sean Lacey (Cork Aquablue) at 5 mins 36 secs
5, Aaron O'donoghue (Dublin South) at 8 mins 34 secs

Ci Category 2 Overall:

1, Cathal Moynihan (Waterford Comeragh) 16 hours 55 mins 59 secs
2, John Dempsey (Tipperary Carrick Iverk Prod.) at 2 mins 7 secs
3, Ciaran Clarke (Mayo Castlebar Fedaia Bikes) at 15 mins 59 secs
4, Mehall Fitzgerald (Tipperary Visit Nenagh.Ie Dmg) at 17 mins 58 secs
5, David Watson (Down Chain Reaction Cycles) at 18 mins 6 secs

International team:

1, Azerbaijan Synergy Baku, 50 hours 8 mins 34 secs
2, Great Britain national team, at 2 mins 13 secs
3, Denmark Blue Water, at 2 mins 14 secs
4, Belgium An Post Chainreaction Sean Kelly, at 3 mins 41 secs
5, Britain Rapha Condor JLT, at 4 mins 36 secs

County team:

1, Cork Aquablue, 50 hours 24 mins 16 secs
2, Louth Prague Charter, at 13 mins 59 secs
3, Tipperary Carrick Iverk Produce, at 17 mins 58 secs
4, Dublin West Eurocycles, at 24 mins 16 secs
5, Meath Dunboyne DID, at 42 mins 10 secs

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