IVCA Age Standard C/ship, Batterstown
The IVCA Road Race Championship is a race run on an age based h/cap and those who have maintained exceptional levels of fitness lay down the challenge to the younger vets and certainly today there were good smatterings of talent throughout all age groups. The race was run starting & finishing in Batterstown and ran over four laps of the Green Sheds (well they used to be green). Plenty of talent on show in the 40/44 & 45/49 groups and if (or when!!) these groups got together they would certainly eat rapidly into the h/cap. Up ahead Fred Harte was in a group of 4 riders ten minutes behind the limit group, with the the ‘superstars’ group consisting of (among others) the Lally’s, Paddy Davis, Liam Keenan, Eddie Dunne, John McSherry and Pat Halligan chasing down Fred’s group. The chase must have been hard enough as some notables were missing when Sean’s group caught up with Fred. All nine riders then worked steadily up and over as there was still one group up the road and there were also the small matter of the young fellas in hot pursuit!!! The group continued to work together ‘encouraged’ by Jimmy. As long as everyone worked there would be no jumping (not for awhile anyway!!!).
Coming up Warrenstown, going into the last lap, Jimmy jumped and was joined nearly immediately by Sean and both made their power to weight ratio count on the only hill on the course. Fred dearly wanted to be in this break but obviously could make no attempt that would risk anyone else getting across. Unusually Liam Keenan missed the move and Fred ‘hoped’ that he might make an attempt to get across. He surely did (…several times) and each time Fred marked it.
Meanwhile up ahead Sean & Jimmy still had plenty to do. Fifteen miles to go, riders to catch and the small matter of staying clear!!!. There is no place to hide in a 2-man break!! On the run into Batterstown a quick check on the long straight section told them that they had it between them. Both were tired. Both had given so much, and each knew that they were in this position solely down to the efforts of the other. It was certainly a race that neither deserved to lose, so by agreement they decided to share the laurels and crossed the line in a joined two handed salute. A unique situation for two brothers to find themselves in after a long break. Of course they might have a barney over whose name is written on the cup first , or over who gets it for the first 6 months!!!!
They chasing group came in 1’10” behind with Fred having a go from 250m which proved to slightly to far out with a headwind and was passed by Liam Keenan (Orwell) and Brian Monaghan (Newry) but held on for 5th from Dermot McGrath (Bray Wh), and only seconds separating the rest of the groups.
It could have been another Lally one-two but today neither deserved to lose……….and today neither had to.
|1.||Jimmy Lally||All Systems DW|
|=||Sean Lally||McNally Swords|
|4.||Brian Monaghan||Newry Wh|
|5.||Fred Harte||McNally Swords|
|6.||Dermot McGrath||Bray Wh|