Road National Series Round Two Preview 

The Cycling Ireland Road National Series continues this weekend after a thrilling opening round in Blarney, Co. Cork, on Sunday March 26th.  

Round Two of the series is fast approaching as the focus switches to Co. Carlow and the prestigious Des Hanlon Memorial on Sunday, April 2nd.  

A regular fixture on the Irish cycling calendar, riders will take on the roads of Carlow and Kilkenny in yet another challenging course. 

After Daire Feeley and Aoife O'Brien earned hard-fought victories in Blarney, the pair lead the National Series rankings and will begin the defence of their jerseys in Carlow.

Here’s everything you need to know about Round Two: 

The Route 

Starting and finishing in Carlow town, riders will head west around a punchy course along the roads of Carlow and Kilkenny. 

In the men’s race, riders will be put through their paces in a 144km long course that features over 1,700m of climbing throughout.  

After heading Northwest along the N80, riders will head back South before entering a circuit at Crettyard. 

The riders will take on the hilly circuit three times, passing through Castlecomer each occasion before taking on a smaller circuit and racing to the finish in Carlow town. 

You can view the route profile and map here.  

The women’s race takes on a similar route, with over 1,100m of climbing and a total distance of 100km. 

Their route takes them along two laps of the Castlecomer and Crettyard circuit before they race back towards Carlow town for what promises to be a great race. 

You can view the route profile and map here. 

Race HQ And Start Time 

The Race HQ is at Leinster Co-op Mart, Killeshin Road, Carlow R93 VOR1 

Races are scheduled to get underway at 12 pm.   

Quotes Corner 

Carlow Road Club said:

"We at Carlow Road Cycling Club would like take this opportunity of welcoming you all to Carlow town to our annual Des Hanlon Memorial Road Races. This year we have added on section to the end of A1/A2 race which will challenge the riders. A total of 144km."
"This year promises excellent racing comprising of tough hills, fast descents and flat terrain in keeping with a National Series event. It is a spectacular route with fantastic views looking down over Carlow Town from the Gratto at Rossmore and will be exciting for both riders and spectators. The circuit and event has all the ingredients of a classic road race, with hopefully top class fields from across the country along with our local riders, this will be a spectacle."
"The route takes on the Rushes, the Yellow Road and the climb to Rossmore from Kellishin Village for the first time – for the Women's National Series race they stay on the original circuit. Rossmore is the highest point of the race and offers spectacular views too and a great place for spectators to gather."
"Over the years Carlow Road Cycling Club put in a tremendous amount of work to give the cyclists the best and the safest race possible. To all our sponsors and supporters of the club, again a special thank you for your continued support – without this, we simply could not hold such a prestigious event such as a National Series event."


Round One Recap 

In the men's race, Daire Feeley was joined by Conn McDunphy as the pair bridged over to the breakaway on the second lap of the Blarney circuit. And with 30km to go, the pair put the pressure on once more as they rode away in search of victory.

Feeley proved strongest in the final sprint to take the leaders jersey while Liam O'Brien was the first junior rider over the line in 5th place to earn the junior leaders jersey.

In the women's race, Aoife O'Brien proved strongest throughout as her explosive turns at the front of the leading group eventually wittled the selection down to four riders.

And O'Brien was the comfortable winner of the subsequent sprint, finishing ahead of Jemma Speers and Erin Creighton to take the leaders jersey as Hannah Hayes took the junior leaders jersey as the first junior rider over the line in 5th place. 

Current Standings 


Men's ranking

1st - Daire Feeley

2nd - Conn McDunphy

3rd - Luke Smith

Women's ranking

1st - Aoife O'Brien

2nd - Jemma Speers

3rd - Erin Creighton

Junior men's ranking

1st - Liam O'Brien

2nd - Patrick Casey

3rd - Maxwell Herewald

Junior women's ranking

1st - Hannah Hayes

2nd - Shauna Finn

Full results are available here. 

Find out more about the 2023 Road National Series here. 

Entries are open here.