2023 Road National Championships Senior & U23 Men’s Road Race Preview And Start List 

Rory Townsend celebrates winning the 2023 Road National Championships

The 2023 Road National Championships concludes with the senior men’s road race (incorporating U23 men) at 10.30am on Sunday, June 25th. 

A new national champion will be crowned as the senior men take on a tough 162.2km course around Dungannon, Co. Tyrone.  

After an opening loop, riders will race around six laps of a circuit in what will decide who will be crowned national champion. Route details are available here.

A host of big-name riders will be on the start line, with a punchy course offering an opportunity for climbers or puncheurs while a relatively flat final kilometers' meaning sprinters will fancy their chances as well. 

Sam Bennett, Ben Healy and Ryan Mullen are on the startlist representing UCI World Tour teams while reigning national champion Rory Townsend has also confirmed he’ll defend his title. 

A formidable line-up also including Rás Tailteann winner Dillon Corkery as well as Road National Series leader Conn McDunphy, whoever is first to cross the line will have to earn their victory. 

In the U23 category, the first rider over the line in the category will become U23 national champion – irrespective of where they place.  

Teams of three or more are eligible to win a team award. Those teams and their riders have been highlighted on the start list. 

Riders To Watch 

Rory Townsend 

The reigning national champion, Rory Townsend put in a stunning display in 2022 to claim his first national champion jersey. He's flown the flag in a host of races around the UK and Europe this season and is aiming to defend it on Sunday. We caught up with Townsend last month, read the full interview here.  

Ben Healy 

Ben Healy will be the name on many fans' lips roadside on Sunday after his breathtaking displays in the Ardennes Spring Classics as well as the Giro d'Italia. A dominant stage victory and a breakaway regular in the Giro confirmed his arrival to the top table of cycling last month. A versatile rider who can time trial and packs an almighty punch, Healy will turn heads on Sunday.  

Conn McDunphy 

The leader of the Road National Series with just two rounds to go, Conn McDunphy is enjoying a brilliant season. After an impressive Rás Tailteann, McDunphy switched his attention to the Road National Championships and arrives to Dungannon as one of the top domestic riders looking to mix it up with the world tour riders. 

Dillon Corkery 

Another top rider who could be in the thick of it is Dillon Corkery. The Cork native has raced most of the season in France but enjoyed his best success at home as he took overall victory at the Rás Tailteann last month.  

Ryan Mullen 

Usually utilised as a lead-out man for sprinters such as Sam Bennett in the World Tour, Ryan Mullen has more than enough about him to take a win and will fancy his chances of winning a fourth national title in the road race. 

Sam Bennett 

Sam Bennett's palmaris speaks for itself - 2019 national champion, Tour de France green jersey and stage wins across all three of cycling's grand tours. The Bora Hansgrohe sprinter will be the man to watch on Sunday and is targeting the national championships as he continues preparations for a possible Tour de France campaign.  

Dean Harvey (U23) 

The Trinity Racing youngster has enjoyed a fine season, hitting the ground running as he sealed his status as Cyclo-cross National Champion. When he's not picking up wins in the Cross-country National Series, Harvey has been impressing around the world and at home, competing in the Tour of Japan, Gran Camino and Rás Mumhan among others.  

Darren Rafferty (U23) 

Fresh off a magnificent Giro Next Gen performance, Rafferty took second overall in the 'Baby Giro' including a podium finish atop of the mighty Passo Dello Stelvio. In the form the 19-year-old is in, expect him to feature in the fight to be crowned national champion. 

Start List