||Last Updated: Jul 25, 2017 - 9:22:14 AM
21st July 2017 – This Sunday, 23rd July, will see Ireland’s premier mountain bikers compete in the Irish National Championships in both the Cross Country (XC) and Downhill (DH) disciplines.
National Titles Up for Grabs in Djouce and Rostrevor This Sunday
By Heather Boyle, Cycling Ireland Communications Officer
Jul 21, 2017,
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Top young international names like Jacob Dickson, Liam Wolfe and David Conroy will be testing the best of the Irish riders, with well-known names like Gareth McKee, Ciara Macmanus and reigning double World Master’s Champion Robin Seymour among those competing.
Djouce Woods, Co. Wicklow, is the setting for the endurance based XC Championships, with over 135 set to compete on the challenging, yet spectator friendly, course. The riders, who represent 45 Clubs and Teams, will take on some of the best Wicklow trails, thanks to this year’s hosts, Epic MTB Expert Cycles.
Speaking ahead of the Wicklow Championships, the Offroad Commission XC Coordinator Max Staroniewicz described what will be an exciting race: “On Sunday we are going to see lots of familiar names from the National Points Series (NPS), Ulster XC League, and various club leagues from around the country – at this stage the riders know each other well. They know their strengths and their weakness, and this will mean very close racing.”
With names like The Hurt Locker, Humpty Dumpty and Python the course is a testing one. Staroniewicz added: “We have designed a course with gruelling climbs, technical traverses and steep descents; and there will be 12 titles contested, from the U12s to the Over 50s! The competition will be fierce in all the categories, and we’re likely to see the most intense competition between club mates, where racers will turn themselves inside out to get the bragging rights. At the end of the day, though, it’s all about one thing – the honour to wear the Irish Jersey on the podium and during the 2018 season.”
The DH Championships take place in Kilbroney Forest, Rostrevor, hosted by Rostrevor Mountain Bike Club. This is a weekend long event, with registration and practise occurring throughout the weekend.
Race organiser and Downhill Coordinator on the Offroad Commission, Derek Cowan, promises great racing, saying “All the top downhill riders in Ireland will be here – across categories from the Under 14s through to the 50+ men! We are especially excited to welcome Jacob Dickson who has been competing at the highest level in the World Cup events across Europe and further afield.”
Also competing is up and coming rider Chris Cumming: “Younger riders including Chris Cumming will be here – Chris is leading the British Downhill Series. In the Masters 30 class we Colin Ross will be one to watch – being the previous National Senior Champion.”
Riders will travel from around the country to compete in one of the main events on the Downhill calendar, Cowan is welcoming the large number of entries: “A total of 181 riders have entered, including those competing in non-championships events, showing the surge in popularity in this event. It’s the biggest entry ever, and we are looking forward to watching them compete on the challenging track that Kilbroney always provides.”
Both National Championship events offer something for the whole family, with competitions for children and sports category riders being held as well as the National Championship events. Entry is free for spectators, and details of both events can be found on the Cycling Ireland website.
National XC Championships, Djouce
10.25 U14, U16, Jun Women, Jun Men, Senior Women
12.40 Non-championship race
14.25 M40, M50, M60
16.10 M30, Senior Men
National DH Championships, Rostrevor
10.00 Seeding All
13.45 Race Start All
About the Disciplines:
Cross Country Mountain Biking (XC) where cyclists ride on bikes that are designed primarily around cross country racing. With an emphasis on a combination of climbing, speed and endurance the bikes tend to be both lightweight and efficient. XC Mountain Bikes have evolved from being steel hardtail frames with rigid forks, to the full suspension bikes that are most commonly used today.
Downhill Mountain Biking (DH) is an adrenalin fuelled Off Road discipline, where the main focus is travelling down technical, tricky and steep descents as fast as possible. The bikes used in DH tend to be very strong, with a large amount of sag to get ample traction to go fast over bumpy trails.
Cycling Ireland Offroad Commission: www.offroadcyclingireland.ie
Cycling Ireland Website: www.cyclingireland.ie
XC Event Website: http://irishxcnps.ie/
XC Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/151677962070807/
CI Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cyclingireland
CI Twitter: @irecyclingfed
CI Instagram: cyclingirelandfed
CI YouTube: Cycling Ireland