Dan Martin ready to roll in the Clasica San Sebastian

In-form Irish rider also set to take part in this year’s Vuelta a España

Six days after taking eighth overall in the Tour de France and winning the most combative rider award, Dan Martin will return to action on Saturday.

The Irishman will compete in the Clasica San Sebastian in northern Spain, having ridden well there in the past.

“For lots of riders the Clasica San Sebastian is an opportunity to take advantage of the physical conditioning they’ve gained at the Tour de France,” pointed out UAE Team Emirates sport director Joxean Matxin.

"Our line-up will be made up of two riders who have raced in the Tour: Daniel Martin, who was always brilliant and combative in France; and Kristijan Durasek, who was constant on French climbs.


“The competition is going to be fierce; it will be essential to make it to the final in a good position and with enough energy left to spend on what, in these last few years, has turned out to be the crucial part of the route: the climb on Murgil Tontorra, coming off the back with eight kilometres to go to the finish line.”

Martin has previously placed seventh and 12th in the event, doing so in 2015 and 2016 respectively. However, his attributes plus his strong Tour form suggest he could do better than this.

Peak form

His team has confirmed that Martin is also scheduled to ride the Vuelta a España. He won a stage and finished seventh overall in the past, but hasn’t competed in the event since 2015.

This year’s world championships has an ideal course for Martin and the Vuelta would act as both a goal in itself and also as a platform to hit peak form for the worlds. The grand tour will begin on August 25th.

Meanwhile, Ireland's campaign in the paracycling road world championships began on Thursday with the H3 time trial in Maniago, Italy. Declan Slevin was competing in the event but crashed out in wet conditions. A lightning storm had taken place 10 minutes before the start of the event, making the roads very slippery.

On Friday, Paralympic silver medallist Colin Lynch will compete in the MC2 time trial, with Ronan Grimes riding in the MC4 category. On Friday afternoon, paralympic champions Katie-George Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal will try to defend their title in the women's B tandem time trial.

Also in action will be the men's tandem pairings of Peter Ryan and Sean Hahessy, plus Damien Vereker and Dermot Radfield.

Shane Stokes

Shane Stokes

Shane Stokes is a contributor to The Irish Times writing about cycling