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ROAD RACING Last Updated: 9 Aug 2019 - 12:20:39 PM

Banbridge Rider Aims For John Beggs Win In National Road Series Leaders Jersey
By Jessica Lamb, Press Officer, Cycling Ireland
7 Aug 2019,

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LOCAL rider James Curry is looking forward to a return to local roads this Saturday at the 48th John Beggs Memorial Road Races in Dromore, where the 21-year-old will wear the Cycling Ireland National Road Series Spin11 Leaders Jersey.

Curry, who rode for hosts Banbridge Cycling Club in his youth, shot to the top of the Men’s National Road Series General Classification with second place in Round 4 at the Mullingar GP.

He knocked Dan Morrissey-MIG.ie-Pactimo team mate Conor Hennebry off the top spot, and believes the hilly course, that he knows well, for Round 5 will suit even better than Mullingar’s trappy affair last month.

“Mullingar was a weird race,” he said. “No one was getting away. There was no part of the course that was really hard enough; it was all flat, and the wind was always going in the right direction.

“I was lucky enough at the end, I snuck off with Darnell Moore. It wasn’t really an attack, it was just an effort when everyone was getting tired. It started at 10 seconds and just grew to the line.”

He added: “The John Beggs is one of my local races. I haven’t been doing it for the last couple of years because I’ve been racing in France, so I’m looking forward to get back there. I know the circuit well and I think that’s a big advantage.

“The hilly course overall would suit me better than Mullingar, and there’s a tricky wee climb to the finish. It’s a nice sting in the legs at the end of the race.”

Through his exploits in this season’s National Road Series, Curry was among 12 riders selected to represent Ireland at last weekend’s Kreiz Breizh Elites Road Races in France. There, Hennebry shone against professional riders, making the top 40 on the final 171km stage - a race that only 105 of the 130 starters completed.

Ireland’s Women’s Kreiz Breizh Elites team also excelled, Irish track cycling international Lydia Gurley and last year’s John Beggs winner Lauren Creamer taking 10th and 11th on Stage 1. Creamer went on to be 10th in Stage 2’s sprint too, earning herself 10th overall.

Women’s National Road Series Leader Grace Young was also in action for Ireland in France, and will be looking to use that experience to consolidate her position at the top of the table this Saturday.

The John Beggs Memorial Road Race starts in Dromore and rolls out onto a circuit through the villages of Kinallen and Dromara, boasting the Mourne Mountains as a backdrop. The climbs of Ballykeel Hill, Kinallen and Ballykeel make bunch finishes unlikely, the sharp climb up Mount Street in Dromore to the finish, adding to the test.

The Men’s National Road Series field will race 128km, and the Women’s will race 98km, with races beginning at 12noon from Dromore High School.

The 48th running of the John Beggs Memorial Road Races will be covered live on Twitter via @CINatRoadSeries this Saturday from early.


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