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January Winners at Cycling Ireland Monthly Awards

27/02/2018
January Winners at Cycling Ireland Monthly Awards

This year Cycling Ireland has introduced new monthly awards to recognise the achievements and commitment of Irish cyclists. Every month awards will be announced to recognise the following categories; female cyclist of the month, male cyclist of the month and volunteer of the month.


The winners of each of these categories every month will form a shortlist for the Annual Awards next November. The results from the January Awards are in with very worthy recipients listed, following a fantastic month for cyclocross in Ireland.


The Female Rider of the Month for January is Lara Gillespie – the sixteen-year-old won the elite category in the Cycling Ireland Cyclocross National Championships this year, and went on to finish a credible 21st place in the U23 event at the UCI Cyclocross World Championships.


At the World Championships there was no junior event for women, so the Scott Orwell Wheeler who won a silver medal at the European Youth Olympic Festival last year competed in the U23 event, and was the fourth fastest junior rider over the line in this competition.


“I’m really happy to win this award”
said Gillespie, who was pleased with the start to her season. “I was surprised with my race at the Nationals, I didn’t have a good lead up into them, and I went in thinking I’ll just do my best, I’m a first-year junior. I had a good day.”


“At the Worlds I started at the back, so didn’t feel any pressure on me – I decided to try to go as hard as I could, and see how it went. I have a lot more years in this category. It was a tough, tough course but I loved every moment of it, and I loved being around all those famous cyclists too.”


The winner of the Male Rider of the Month for January was another National Champion – Darnell Moore – winner of the Elite Men’s title at the Cyclocross National Championships in January.


“I’m pleased that I’ve won this award,”
said Moore, “it’s a new thing in Cycling Ireland, so it’s nice to get the first award, and it’s nice to get the recognition.”


Although Moore’s name is more synonymous with the road, the Team Caldwell Cycles racer had a phenomenal race at the Nationals – show his strength and versatility.


“I was so, so pleased with my performance at the Nationals, everything went perfect – the bikes, pit crew, legs – the lot! It’s one of the best performances I’ve had, I suppose. The support I had on the course was just class.”


 

The January Volunteer of the Month Award was won by Andy Layhe – cyclocross co-ordinator on the Cycling Ireland Off-road Commission. Layhe has been instrumental in the development of the sport of cyclocross in Ireland in recent years, and was team manager for the Irish team at the World Championships at the end of January.


“I’m very surprised and thank you to everyone who voted for me,”
said Layhe on learning about his award win.
“I accept this award on behalf of everyone who helped develop this system – at the Worlds it wasn’t just myself. This is a thanks to the whole team of staff – and to the riders themselves.”


“January was a bit stressful, but it was worthwhile in the end. We started the cyclocross development plan this time last year. A lot goes into these things – we introduced a few new things. It’s great to be part of the set up – we have a good crop of riders coming through. And it is great for the younger ones having the likes of Lara to look up to and seeing what they can aspire to.”



The nominations for the February Awards are now open – CLICK HERE to vote on who you believe should win these categories for February, vote in the below link: 


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FEMALE RIDER OF THE MONTH FOR JANUARY: Lara Gillespie


MALE RIDER OF THE MONTH FOR JANUARY: Darnell Moore


VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH FOR JANUARY: Andy Layhe

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