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Bennett Finishes Just Outside Top Ten at European Championships

Bennett Finishes Just Outside Top Ten at European Championships

Sam Bennett finished just outside the top ten in the Elite Men’s Road Race at the UEC 2017 European Road Cycling Championships in Herning, Denmark, today. Racing as one of the pre-race favourites, the professional cyclist with Bora-Hansgrohe finished in 11th place in the fast bunch sprint at the end of 241.2km of racing.

The European title went to Norway’s Alexander Kristoff with Elia Viviani of Italy getting second in what was a photo finish on the line. Dutchman Moreno Hofland rounded off the podium, winning bronze.

In the early stages of the race, a trio of Lukas Spengler (Switzerland), Iceland’s Anton Elfarsson and Nikolai Shumov (Belarus) led the race, with a substantial lead, which resulted in a steady pace in the main peloton. At approximately 80km to go the gap was closed to the break, with all three Irish riders together.

Coming to the line Bennett avoided a crash in the closing metres, disappointed to be outside the medals, in eleventh place. Also competing today were Sean McKenna and Damien Shaw, both of whom compete for An Post Chainreaction, with the pair finishing 59th and 112th respectively.

Cycling Ireland Technical Director Brian Nugent was pleased with the overall performance of the team this week, saying: “It’s great to be competitive across the board at this level. People were active in the breaks in each race, and that’s good to see. We had a lot of results in and around the top ten in the time trial, and winning an elite medal was absolutely phenomenal. It was a really good week.”

This was the last day of racing at the European Road Championships, which ran from Wednesday 2nd to Sunday 6th August. It rounded off what has been a sensational few weeks for Irish cycling, with Mullen’s bronze in the Elite Men’s Time Trial earlier this week bringing to five the number of medals won by Ireland in European Championships in less than three weeks.

Next up for the Irish cycling team is the UCI Junior World Track Cycling Championships from the 23-27th August, and the UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships from the 31st August – 3rd September 2017.

Elite Men

Alexander Kristoff (NOR) (00:00)

Silver Elia Viviani (ITA) (00:00)

Bronze Moreno Hofland (NED) (00:00)

11th Sam Bennett (IRL) (00:00)

59th Sean McKenna (IRL) (00:26)

112th Damien Shaw (IRL) (03:38)

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