Martyn Irvine pictured at the launch of the 2016 An Post Rás at Dublin Castle. Photograph:  Billy Stickland/Inpho

Track world champion gets buzz back after spending week working on Rás

Clemens Fankhauser secured the An Post Rás for a second time. Photograph: Getty

Austrian recovered from serious crash on day two to hold off a flurry of attacks

Eddie Dunbar crosses the line to secure victory in the  An Post Rás Stage seven. Photograph: Inpho

Becomes one of a select group of teenage stage winners after taking sprint into Baltinglass

Former UCI president Hein Verbruggen has won his libel case against journalist and former professional cyclist   Paul Kimmage. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Journalist and former pro cyclist must pay damages, costs and publicise Swiss court’s ruling in case taken by former UCI president(...)

The riders in An Post Rás  climb the Caha Pass during yesterday’s fifth stage to Clonakilty. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Matthew Holmes and Damien Shaw pile pressure on leader Clemens Fankhauser

Nicolai Brochner of Denmark winning the Rás stage into Sneem. Photograph: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Eddie Dunbar slips from fourth to 12th overall after suffering mechanical problems

The chasing bunch climb the Conor Pass on stage 3 of the An Post Rás. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Irish national team rider Eddie Dunbar was a solid eighth, seven seconds back

Eoin Morton celebrates winning the second stage of the the An Post Rás in Charleville. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Eoin Morton and Bryan McCrystal opened up seven-minute lead on chasing professionals

Taco van der Hoom of The Netherlands celebrates as he crosses the line to win the first stage of the An Post Rás in Multyfarnham. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho.

Jack Wilson best of Irish cyclists in fifth place

Jack Wilson (right) has been named in the An Post Chain Reaction team for the Rás. Photograph: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

Orwell Wheelers look at option of running championships in Wicklow

Philip Deignan is part of a nine-man Team Sky squad in the Giro d’Italia. Photograph: Harry Engels/Getty Images

The three-week Grand Tour begins Friday in the Netherlands

Dan Martin goes on the attack during the closing stages of the Flèche Wallonne Classic in which he finished third. Photograph: Jerome Prevost/EPA.

Eddie Dunbar out of action for at least a month after training fall

Dan Martin (R) finished third behind Julian Alaphilippe (L)  and Alejandro Valverde in La Fleche Wallonne. Photograph: Getty

Alejandro Valverde wins Belgian race for a record fourth time on Wednesday

Irish cyclist Daniel Martin of Etixx-QuickStep team celebrates winning the third stage of the 96th Volta a Catalunya cycling race between Gerona and La Molina, Catalonia, Spain inMarch. Photograph: EPA/Quique Garcia

Following major race successes, Ireland’s Dan Martin has his sights firmly on an Olympic gold

Shannon McCurley, in the green cycling gear, at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships 2016  in London

Facilities here need to race to catch up, but in Shannon McCurley we still have one track cycling competitor to cheer on at the Ri(...)

Dan Martin told The Irish Times he was still a little fatigued from Catalunya and had decided to use the event for training. Photograph: Getty Images

Martin finished 112th on Thursday’s fourth stage, ending the day in 70th position

Irish cyclist Sam Bennett of Bora - Argon18: “I still find myself a little unsure of myself”. Photograph: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Irish sprinter won the opening stage of the Criterium International last Saturday

Etixx Quick Step Irish rider Dan Martin celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the Girona to La Molina third stage of the 96th Volta Catalunya. Photo: Getty Images

Irish rider claims third stage in La Molina to claim overall race lead at Volta a Catalunya

Ireland’s Colin Lynch won a silver medal in the C2 individual pursuit the UCI Paracycling World Championships in Montichiari, Italy on Thursday. Photograph: Getty Images.

Colin Lynch and Eoghan Clifford get Ireland’s campaign in Italy off to winning start

Ireland’s  Josie Knight, Lydia Boylan, Melanie Spath and Caroline Ryan compete in the Women’s Team Pursuit during day two of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at Lee Valley VeloPark, London.

Bora Argon 18 team have secured an invite for the third year in succession

Sebastian Weber is happy with young Ryan Mullen’s progress. Photograph: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

‘What we want to see at this point is solid performances, not going too deep in races’

 Irish riders Eddie Dunbar, Martyn Irvine and Bryan McCrystal at the launch of the 2016 An Post Rás at Dublin Castle from where the race will start on  Sunday May 22nd. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Ipho

Course will be 60 kilometres longer than last year and more undulating

Bora Argon 18 rider Sam Bennett finished fourth on stage four of Tour  of Qatar. Photograph: Getty Images.

Early puncture sets Carrick-on-Suir back but he recovers well to join leading pack

Dan Martin celebrates after winning stage two of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana on Thursday. Photograph: Tim De Waele

Irish cyclist gains confidence as he picks up his first victory since October 2014

Damien Shaw (right) was pilot for James Brown at the 2012 Paralympics where they won bronze in the Individual B Pursuit. Photograph: Inpho.

Latecomer to make first start with An Post Chainreaction team at GP la Marseillaise

 Sam Bennett of Ireland and Bora-Argon18 celebrates winning stage two of the 2015 Arctic Race of Norway, a 162.5km stage between Evenskjer and Setermoen. Photograph:  Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

The Carrick-on-Suir rider’s preparations have left him in confident mood this new year

Ryan Mullen has had his first training camp after turning pro with the Cannondale team. Photograph: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

New coach Sebastian Weber believes rider can develop beyond time-trials

Ryan Mullen of Ireland came fourth in last year’s European Championship Time Trial. Photograph: Getty Images.

21-year-old ready for hard training involved with his new Cannondale Pro Cycling team

Martyn Irvine displaying his gold and silver medals won at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Series of injury setbacks contributed to cyclist’s loss of love of the sport

Ireland’s Martyn Irvine competes in the Men’s Omnium II Individual Pursuit 4km event at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships last February. Photograph: Getty Images

Ireland’s best ever track rider, he won the world championship scratch race in 2013

Matt Brammeier: “I’ve been making good progress and I’m ready for a good year.” Photograph: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

Five-time Irish cycling champion Matt Brammeier is now targeting his first Tour

Philip Lavery (front rider in green), will ride for Team U Nantes Atlantique next year.  Photograph: Nadia Gativa/INPHO

Philip Lavery and Mark Downey secure places with French squads for 2016

 Damien Shaw: “I first started out racing as a hobby and a means to stay fit and never thought it would lead to this.” Photograph:  Paul Mohan/Sportsfile

Thirty-one-year-old national champion grasps the chance to race full-time

African MTN-Qhubeka rider Matt Brammeier has recovered from serious injuries sustained on the Tour of Utah in August. Photograph: Getty Images.

Multiple Irish champion recovers from injury to find his team getting welcome boost

Sport Ireland is handling tender for Irish indoor velodrome. Photograph: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

Cycling Ireland chief says velodrome project probably going out to tender in early 2016

Jack Wilson (An Post Chain Reaction) leads a group of riders during the 2014 National Cycling Championships in  Westmeath. Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

Irish cyclist looks to put injury-blighted year behind him with Belgium-based outfit

Denis Toomey: has focused on the surge of CI membership to just under 28,000 and  the introduction of a five year strategy at the end of last year.

It took outgoing vote of former president Rory Wyley to separate the two men last time

Former An 	Post Chainreaction rider Ryan Mullen, who has being given a two-year contract with the Cannondale-Garmin team, starting 2016. Photograph: Inpho

New Irish signings are expected, thus continuing the squad’s goal of helping to nurture talent

Quartet of Caroline Ryan (above), Lydia Boylan, Josie Knight  and Mel Spath clocked a time of 4 minutes 31.66, finishing sixth quickest and further reducing the national record by 3.424 second

Quartet of Lydia Boylan, Josie Knight, Caroline Ryan and Mel Spath finish sixth

Ireland’s  Sam Bennett won the Paris-Bourges on Thursday, his fifth win of the year. Photograph:   Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Irish sprinter blasts home to claim fifth win of the season

Dan Martin will move from the Cannondale-Garmin team to Etixx-Quick-Step in 2016. Photograph: Getty.

Sean Kelly takes promise from Irish riders at World Road Race Championships

 Conor Dunne and Sam Bennett compete in the elite men’s road race in Virginia, USA. Photograph: Inpho

Ciara Doogan and Eddie Dunbar first in to action in Richmond, Virginia

Ireland’s Ryan Mullen is completely focussed on winning gold at World Road Race Championships in Richmond, Virginia. Photograph: Getty.

2014 silver medalist one of 13 Irish riders at Virginia road race

French cyclist Alexis Gougeard of Ag2r team celebrates his victory as he reaches the finish line during the 19th stage of the Spanish cycling Vuelta in Medina del Campo, Valladolid. The 19th stage was a 185.5 kilometres long race from Medina del Campo in Valladolid to Avila. Photo: Javier Lizon/PA

The Belgian rider increased his lead by six seconds during today’s 19th stage in Spain

Sky's Irish cyclist Nicolas Roche (R) sprints next to Trek's Spanish cyclist Haimar Zubeldia to win the 18th stage of the 2015 Vuelta Espana cycling tour, a 204 km route between Roa and Riaza on September 10, 2015. AFP PHOTO / JAIME REINAJAIME REINA/AFP/Getty Images

Overall leader Dumoulin came under repeated attack on final climb from Aru

Team Sky rider Nicolas Roche of Ireland during the Vuelta Tour of Spain cycling race. Photograph: Jon Nazca/Reuters

Chris Froome’s resurgence will confirm him as the number one of the Sky team

Orica GreenEdge’s Colombian cyclist Esteban Chaves celebrates his red jersey with cava on the podium of the sixth stage of the 2015 Vuelta Espana cycling tour, a 200.3km stage between Cordoba and Cazorla. Photo: Jose Jordan/Getty Images

Irish rider third in overall standings with Nicholas Roche one place behind

Winner of the fifth stage of the Vuelta a España Caleb Ewan celebrates ahead of German cyclist John Degenkolb and Slovenia’s Peter Sagan. Photograph: Getty.

Nicolas Roche and Dan Martin retain third and fourth places respectively after fifth stage

Movistar’s Spanish cyclist Alejandro Valverde rounds the final bend ahead of Peter Sagan and Nicolas Roche to win the fourth stage of the 2015 Vuelta Espana. Photograph: Getty Images

Sky rider fourth in stage four of the Vuelta a España, Dan Martin also in front group

Nicolas Roche (second from left) chases Colombia’s Johan Esteban Chaves during the second stage of the Tour of Spain  between Alhaurin de la Torre and Caminito del Rey, Malaga. Photograph: Javier Lizon/EPA

Irishmen claim top four places as Esteban Chaves claims second-stage success

Dan Martin of Team Garmin-Sharp in action during Stage Four of the Tour de l’Ain on Saturday 16th August, 2014, Arbent, France. Photograph: James Startt/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Race marks Irishman’s final Grand Tour with Cannondale-Garmin

Sam Bennett withdrew from this year’s Tour de France during stage 17. Photograph: Getty.

Carrick-on-Suir rider takes third place on opening stage of Artic Race

 Ryan Mullen will chase victory in the European equivalent when he lines out in the UEC European Road Championships time trial today.

Mullen’s class has been apparent for years with victory in the junior Chrono des Nations

Eoghan Clifford: won the MC3 time trial at the World Championships in Notwil, Switzerland. Photo: Oliver Kremer/Getty

Dan Martin in contract negotiations for next year and beyond

Ciaran Kelly pictured with Sean Kelly (no relation) in 2005.

Amateur rider blamed contaminated meat after testing positive for Clenbuterol in 2014

Sam Bennett withdrew from this year’s Tour de France after a fever on Tuesday night. Photograph: Inpho.

Bora-Argon 18 team manager Ralph Denk has high hopes for the future for Irishman

 Dan Martin  climbs the Col du Tourmalet during stage 11 of the Tour de France. The Irish rider finished second. Photograph:   Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Consolation comes by way of a stage second and day’s award for most competitive rider

 Dan Martin finished second on the eighth stage of the Tour de France between Rennes and Mur-de-Bretagne. Photograph:    Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Irish rider left frustrated after being hampered when Frenchman made final break

The pack rides during the 159.5 km third stage of the 102nd edition of the Tour de France cycling race  between the belgian cities of Antwerp and Huy. Photo: Eric Feferberg/Getty Images

The Irish rider finished five seconds behind Joaquim Rodriguez and Chris Froome

After the race’s first rest day on July 13th, the battle continues with three mountain stages, each ending with uphill finishes.  Photograph: Michael Steele/Getty

Contador, Froome, defending champion NIbali and Quintana all set out with high hopes

One of Tour de France favourites Alberto Contador told press conference in Utrecht yesterday completing the Giro/Tour  double would be a career-changing achievement. Photograph: Vincent Jannink/EPA

Martin capable of stage wins, Bennett may also contend, Roche will lack opportunity

Team Sky’s Chris Froome is the favourite for this year’s Tour de France. Photograph: Tim Ireland/PA Wire.

Irish rider determined to help team-mate Chris Froome win back crown

First-year senior Eddie Dunbar illustrates his potential with second-place finish

Ryan Mullen: will be aiming to complete an impressive double in the national championships. Photo: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

Rule change means last year’s first home aiming for Elite title this time around

Sam Bennett has been confirmed as one of Bora-Argon18’s two leaders for the Tour de France. Photograph: Getty

Nicolas Roche and Philip Deignan may still make team while Sam Bennet leader for Bora-Aragon18

Dan Martin: his seventh overall in last week’s Critérium du Dauphiné should also hand him leadership status with the Cannondale Garmin squad. Photograph: by Bryan Lennon/Getty Images

Cyclist a certainty for Le Tour after placing seventh overall in Critérium du Dauphiné

Dan Martin might have finished sixth if not for a puncture on Saturday. Photograph: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Strong finish in Critérium Du Dauphiné augurs well for Tour

Sam Bennett: has been named  co-leader for the Bora-Argon18 team for his first Tour de France. Photograph: INPHO/Ciaran Fallon

Irish cyclist currently out of action with cold

Dan Martin finished 11th in Thursday’s stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné. Photograph: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images.

Irish duo move up standings after mountainous stage of Critérium du Dauphiné

Matt Brammeier cycling ahead of Conor Dunne in the 2014 National Cycling Championships. Photograph: Ciaran Fallon

Multiple Irish road race champion aiming for Vuelta a España ride in August

Matt Brammeier (right): the  former Irish road race champion has never competed in the Tour de France. Photograph: Inpho

MTN Qhubeka team general manager Brian Smith says Brammeier is on long list for Vuelta a España

Aidis Kruopis celebrates as he crosses the line to win stage eight  of the  An Post Rás from  Drogheda to  Skerries. Photo: Paul Mohan/Sportsfile

Tirol Cycling rider the second consecutive Austrian to win title

 Andreas Mueller of  Hrinkow Advarics  Cycleangteam crosses the line to win Stage 7  of the 2015 An Post Rás from Ballinamore to Drogheda. Photo:  Paul Mohan/Sportsfile

Leader Lukas Postlberger confident of making final stage despite bad fall

 Ian Bibby on his way to winning stage six  of the 2015 An Post Rás from Ballina to Ballinamore. Photo: Paul Mohan/Sportsfile

Irish road race champion Ryan Mullen slips back from leader on stage six

Ryan Mullen, of An Post Chainreaction, after receiving the The Irish Sports Council under-23 white jersey from Miss An Post Rás Donna McCaffrey and Liz Murphy, Mayo Sports Partnership board member, following Stage Five of the 2015 An Post Rás in Ballina. Photograph: Paul Mohan/Sportsfile.

Martyn Irvine drops from third to ninth place after 142.2km stage as Aaron Gate is first to finish line

Lithuania’s Aidis Kruopis won the foruth stage of the An Post Rás after a sprint finish. Photograph: Sportsfile

Lithuania’s Aidis Kruopis wins 155km Bearna to Newport race in a sprint finish

Matteo Malucelli celebrates as he crosses the line in Bearna. Photograph: Paul Mohan/Sportsfile

UCD’s Ian Richardson continues impressive showing as he moves up to fourth overall

New Zealand’s Aaron Gate won the second stage of the An Post Rás. Photograph: Sportsfile

Italian grabbed vehicle afer puncture allowing Kiwi Aaron Gate to secure stage two

Conor Dunne of An Post Chain Reaction (left) failed to cross into to top group in the first stage of An Post Rás. Photograph: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho.

Irvine, Mullen and Richardson lead Irish charge on opening stage

Irish rider Sam Bennett (right) of team Bora Argon 18 in action during the Tour of Bavaria cycle race. Photograph:  Rene Vigneron /Bayern Rundfahrt /dpa

Irish cyclist kicks late to win sprint finish and regain lead ahead of today’s time trial

Irish rider Sam Bennett on the podium earlier this week. Of yesterday’s sprint he said: “I think I was about 10th when the sprint started. I moved up to fourth by the line, but needed to be closer before it began”

Bennett finds himself third overall, four seconds behind John Degenkolb

Philip Deignan is in line for his first Tour de France appearance this July. Photograph: Inpho

Omission from Team Sky squad for the Giro d’Italia suggests July appearance on cards

Nicholas Roche of Ireland was involved in a large crash which brought him and Dan Martin down inside the final hour of the Liege-Bastogne-Liege. Photo: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Both had been in contention and would likely have challenged in the hilly finale

 Dan Martin: crashed early in Wednesday’s race and while he was able to return to the peloton, withdrew as a precaution. Photograph:  Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Irish cyclist still recovering from crash in Wednesday’s Fleche Wallonne

Dan Martin was forced to pull out of the Flèche Wallonne Classic after a crash. Photograph: Inpho

Cannondale-Garmin rider’s hopes of victory in Belgium ended by fall

 Irish cyclist Sam Bennett. EPA/CARLOS BARBA

‘I did hit my head very hard, so I was dizzy and my upper scalp is sore,’ says cyclist

 Sam Bennett of the Bora-Argon 18 team after falling during the  “Scheldeprijs” one-day race. Photograph: AFP

Bora-Argon18 team rider spends night in hospital

Ryan Mullen said he had “many sleepless nights” after narrowly missing out on victory Ponferrada. Photograph: Ciaran Fallon/Inpho

Cyclist hopes to make up for missing gold by 0.48 seconds in time trial championships

Tejay Van Garderen celebrates winning ahead of Colombian Rigoberto Uran (left) of Etixx-Quick Step team during the stage four of Volta a Catalunya cycling race, in La Molina,  Spain, 26th March 2015. Photograph: EPA/TONI ALBIR

Ninth fourth-place performance at the Volta A Catalunya in Spain

Sam Bennett will be part of the Bora-Argon 18 team’s line-up for Sunday’s Classic, Milan-San Remo. Photograph: Inpho

Carrick-on-Suir rider hoping to gain experience prior to his first Tour de France

Sam Bennett: likely be given a slot on the squad for  the Tour de France squad in July. Photograph: Carlos Barba/EPA

Carrick- on-Suir rider finished just behind Jens Debusschere and Peter Sagan

Pat McQuaid:  “The report completely clears me of any corruption, any wrongdoing or any complicity in doping,” he said on RTÉ radio. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images.

‘It wasn’t a question of defending or protecting Lance Armstrong . . . we tested over 200 times and he never tested positive’

A report has accused the UCI of colluding with drug cheat Lance Armstrong. Photograph: Afp

A report 13 months in the making delivered a very scathing review of the UCI and Lance Arsmstrong

Philip Deignan will compete with the Sky team in the Tour de Langkawi. Photograph: Getty Images.

Irish duo hoping Malaysian race will eventually lead to Tour de France

Ireland’s Caroline Ryan, Lydia Boylan, Lauren Creamer and Josie Knight in action at the Track World Championships. Photograph: Guy Swarbrick/Sportsfile

Irish rider finishes 10th after missing vital break by Bobby Lea with 23 laps remaining

An arbitration panel has ordered Lance Armstrong and Tailwind Sports to pay $10 million in a fraud dispute to SCA Promotions. Photograph: Getty Images.

Disgraced cyclist ordered to pay $10m fine to Dallas-based promotions company

 Lance Armstrong, once of the US Postal team, seen here during a press conference in 2001. Armstrong has been ordered to pay a record $10 million (€88m) to Texas-based firm SCA promotions after losing a lawsuit.  Photograph: Benoit Doppagne / EPA

Drug cheat was paid about $12 million by company before Tour de France titles stripped

Irelands Sam Bennett  from team Bora-Argon 18 celebrates after winning the sixth and final Stage of the Tour of Qatar. Photograph: Getty Images

Bennett sprints clear on final stage to record first win of the year

 Nicolas Roche: will be hoping to compete for Team Sky  in this year’s Tour de France. Photo: Dara Mac Dónaill

Carrick-on-Suir rider has another chance in today’s final stage

 Sam Bennett: is in his second pro season and aims to build on the four wins he clocked up in 2014. Photograph: Inpho

Carrick-on- Suir cyclist suffers mechanical issues and a puncture on the opening leg of the Mallorca Challenge

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