Ben Healy dominates to take home national time trial victory

Kelly Murphy completes treble of victories after previous success in 2018 and 2019

Ben Healy dominated the men’s race at the national time trial championships in Nenagh on Thursday evening, scorching around the 32.13 kilometre course in a time of 37 mins 50.33 seconds, slightly over a minute and a half better than his two closest rivals.

The EF Education-EasyPost professional beat George Peden (Team PBPerformance) and Eddie Dunbar (Ineos Grenadiers) by one minute 32 seconds, with the latter two separated by just .05 of a second.

Healy’s success follows his previous national time trial victories at junior and under 23 level, completing a rare treble.

”It is really nice. It is a good feeling to win something this year, especially a first win in the EF colours is really nice. For sure it is a nice chunk of points for the team as well.”

Healy has ridden aggressively all year and gone very close to a big result. His EF Education-EasyPost team is currently chasing points to ensure that they remain a World Tour squad next season.

The under-23 men’s race saw another impressive performance from Darren Rafferty (Hagens Berman Axeon), who was clearly best in last year’s junior road race and time trial. He has stepped up an age bracket this year but was the quickest of that group on Thursday, beating the defending champion Kevin McCambridge (Trinity Racing) by 23 seconds. Kelly Murphy was best of the women, edging last year’s champion Joanna Patterson (Independent Pedaler – Nopinz) by 1.12 seconds and the 2020 victor Eve McCrystal (Bellurgan Wheelers) by 58 seconds.

”I didn’t expect it this year, if I’m honest, because the field gets stronger and stronger each year,” said Murphy. “I wasn’t here last year so there were a few unknowns for me. It was a nice, pleasant surprise and that doesn’t happen often in time trial.” Murphy previously won the title in 2018 and 2019, thus completing her own important treble on Thursday.

The junior events saw Conal Scully (Carlow RCC) beat Quillan Donnelly (Usher Irish Road Club) by 15 seconds to win the men’s title, while there was a much closer battle amongst the junior women. Shauna Finn (Newcastle West Cycling Club) pipped Katie Reilly (Orwell Wheelers Cycling Club) by 1.8 seconds in that contest.

Declan Slevin (Rosemount Cycling Club) took the handbike championship and William Clifford (Galway Bay CC) was best of the C Class. Triple Paralympic gold medallist Katie-George Dunlevy partnered with Linda Kelly to win the tandem event.

The national road championships will continue on Saturday and Sunday with the road race events. They will be held further west in Kanturk on a tough circuit.

National time trial championships, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary (32.13 kilometres)

Elite men: 1 Ben Healy (EF Education-EasyPost) 37′50.33″, 2 G Peden (Team PB Performance) at 1′32.56″, 3 E Dunbar (Ineos Grenadiers) at1′32.61″, 4 J Jenkins (Richardsons Trek DAS) at 2′4.75″, 5 M Christie(Banbridge CC) at 2′43.52″, 6 D Corkery (CC Etupes Le Doubs Pays DeMontbeliard) at 2′46.91″, 7 M McLaughlin (EvoPro Racing) at 3′33″, 8 C Keogh (EvoPro Racing) at 4′18.85″

Under-23 men: 1 Darren Rafferty (Hagens Berman Axeon) 39′36.8″, 2 K McCambridge (Trinity Racing) at 23.19″, 3 A Ward (Team SmartDry Girona Cycling City) at 3′44.63″, 4 J Kenny (UCD Cycling Club) at 3′59.52″, 5 S Caulfield-Dreier (Spellman-Dublin Port) at 5′4.44″

Women: 1 Kelly Murphy (Unattached) 44 minutes 5.43″, 2 J Patterson (Independent Pedaler – Nopinz) at 1.12″, 3 E McCrystal (BellurganWheelers) at 58.4″, 4 A Murphy (Unattached Leinster) at 1′59.78″, 5 LCreamer (Velo Fixers) at 5′19.39″

Junior men: 1 Conal Scully (Carlow RCC) 41′51.91″, 2 Q Donnelly (UsherIrish Road Club) at 15.72″, 3 A Rafferty (US Colomiers) at 39.95″, 4 L O’Brien (Fermoy Cycling Club) at 1′21.26″, 5 C Neill (Carn Wheelers) at1′27.49″

Junior women: 1 Shauna Finn (Newcastle West Cycling Club) 52′26.94″, 2 K Reilly (Orwell Wheelers Cycling Club) at 1.8″, 3 E Grace Creighton(McConvey Cycles) at 39.9″

Handbikes: 1 Declan Slevin (Rosemount Cycling Club), 2 A MacSorley (Unattached Ulster), 3 R Murnane (Unattached Munster)

C Class: 1 William Clifford (Galway Bay CC), 2 R Timothy (CastlereaCycling Club), 3 S Drummond (Cork County CC), 4 C Burns (Banbridge CC), 5 I Naluswa (Reservoir Cogs),

Para Tandems – factored: Tandem: 1 Katie-George Dunlevy and Linda Kelly (Donegal Bay CyclingClub), 2 D Vereker and M Mizgajski (Comeragh CC), 3 J Healion and FMeehan (Tullamore CTC)

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