Tuckwell Triumphs in the Dornan Rás Mumhan


The 2024 Dornan Rás Mumhan

Credit: Caroline Kerley

Taking place over Easter, the Dornan Rás Mumhan provided some great action. Stages 1(a) and 1(b) took place on Good Friday, with the Time Trial getting the five-stage race underway. 

The Irish Junior Development Team were the second team off the line and set the time to beat. Team Skyline and Trinity Racing knew the time to beat, and they delivered. 

Team Skyline proved to be the quickest team in a time of 09’52”35, with Liam Flanagan crossing the line first and taking the yellow jersey going into Stage 1 (b). Trinity Racing finished second and Foran CT, who won two stages last year, were third. 

Stage 2 began from a ceremonial start in Castleisland on to Brosna before turning left on to a circuit in Knocknagoshel. From the get-go Velo Revolution were on the attack and stringing out the bunch. This resulted in a three-man break consisting of Lindsay Watson, George Mitchell and JB Murphy, however, this was soon brought back by the main bunch with riders being dropped out the back on the climb up to Brosna. 

As they entered the circuit into Knocknagoshel a five-man break moved away from the peloton.  Tom Martin of Velo Revolution, Liam Crowley of UCD, George Kimber of Skyline, Luke Tuckwell of Trinity and Dom Jackson of Foran CT.  

It was between Kimber and Tuckwell as they approached the finish line, with Kimber having the edge. 

Stage 2 

Stage 2 rolled out from St. Oliver’s National School at 9:45 on Saturday morning with a neutralised start through the streets of Killarney. The race set for Killorglin reaching incredible speeds of 70kph. 

The bunch was strung out from the outset with the riders’ eyes on getting to the narrow roads around Carragh lake heading for the Cat 1 climb the infamous Bealach Oisin. Winds were hitting from left to right. 

Early attacks from Nathan Mullan and Chris Donald were subsumed back into the bunch. Attacks were hot and heavy until Daire Feely and Thomas Springbett were able to hold a gap of 8 seconds going through Killorglin.

Joe Nathan Mater, Conor Prendergast, Jamie Philips and Adam Lewis, were able to ride across to the two ahead and the gap went out to 36 seconds. This group were absorbed by the bunch at the base of the Bealach Oisin. With the winds in the valley of the Cat 1, the bunch was split to pieces with echelons all over the road. Cresting the climb, the main protagonists were set to animate the race and define its final outcome.

Heading into Waterville, a group of 14 riders opened a gap of 55 seconds with three Trinity Racing riders, two UCD riders, Conn McDunphy, Dom Jackson, Daire Feeley all working to stretch the with 30 km remaining in the race.

Kimber, overnight yellow jersey holder, and his Team Embark Spirit organised a chase to try and pull back the break, however, this did not work out for them as they lost further time before they hit the town of Sneem going into the lap in Tahilla.

On the climb out of Tahilla, four riders made the decisive move to attack and break away leading to a final sprint on to the finish line in Sneem. It was Feeley who had the edge and pulled a brilliant victory to a glorious reception in Sneem. 

Stage 3 

Hosted by Sliabh Luachra Cycling Club and Stage 3 starting from Millstreet, it was Luke Tuckwell in the yellow jersey. He was closely followed by Tom Martin in second and Dom Jackson in third, who won this stage last year. 

The stage commenced from Green Glen’s Arena in Millstreet under a 1.2km neutralised roll-out towards Rathmore just before 11am. 

The race headed for Rathmore and completed a 55km loop back towards Rathmore and then headed for Newmarket.

The first climb got underway through Ballydaly Upper and was led by Conn McDunphy and George Kimber, soon followed main bunch led out by Trinity Racing. The tough climb, that hit spots of 25% gradient, split the bunch as they headed for two more brutal climbs.

Gap closed down significantly by Trinity Racing on the way to the second climb. In the final Climb of the day – following the Butter Road, up to the Kerryman’s Table and to the finish line. 

Trinity Racing filled two of the three spots on the podium with Dean Harvey taking victory and Luke Tuckwell in third, sandwiched between the two Trinity riders was Ulster’s Jamie Meehan. 

Dean Harvey - Stage 3 Winner

Credit: Caroline Kerley

Stage 4 

The final road stage consisted of 113km rolling out from Killorglin onto the Annadale road for three laps around Beaufort and then ten laps of the historical Killorglin town circuit.

Overnight leader Tuckwell of Trinity Racing had 33 seconds over second place Dom Jackson of Foran CT, and 42 seconds off third place Tom Martin of All Human Velo Revolution.

Hard probing attacks came from Feeley from the outset. The Stage 2 winner was 1 minute and 50 seconds off the pace going into the final stage. 

Coming into Beaufort for the first lap, a group of nine riders held a gap of 22 seconds, with Feeley seeming to be driving it on desperate to pull back his deficit on the leaders.

Weather proved to be on side for the day, the dry roads allowed for a wicked pace. The front group managed to extend their gap up to 34 seconds.

Entering Killorglin for the start of the second lap, the breakaway shortened to 23 seconds until they were eventually hauled in.

With the peloton back together, attacks were endless until a huge split arose stretching to 43 seconds before entering Beaufort for the last time.

Yellow jersey was in the chase desperate not to lose any time working well with his team-mates of Trinity Racing. Prendergast and Dunwoody worked their way to a 17 second gap with a chase consisting of Lindsay Watson, Aaron Rafferty, Adam Lewis and Mitchell McGlaughlin trying to close the gap which resulted in a six-man lead with a gap of 37 seconds on the peloton.

Tensions were high and crashes occurred with riders coming down on the road coming into Killorglin.

The five riders managed to hold on to their lead for four laps until Dunwoody launched an attack joined by Lewis, which was bridged across by Thomas Springbett, Paul Kennedy, Odhran Doogan and Mcloughlin.

Entering the last lap, Trinity were closing down every break with the remainder of the peloton all together with 3km to go.

Joe Pidccock of Trinity Racing, managed to outsprint Odhran Doogan of Caldwell wheelers and Patrick O’Loughlin of Greenmount Cycling Academy, to take the win. Pidcock’s team-mate Tuckwell was neatly packed in the group behind to take his win on General Classification and retain his yellow jersey.

Speaking after the race, Tuckwell said: 

“It literally could not have gone any more perfect. I knew I had some good form in training coming into it and I just came in with an open mind this weekend. To get the win is the best possible start to the year.”