John is new Irish time trial champion

CLANN Eireann’s John Heverin claimed the title of Irish Veterans Time Trial champion in fine style last Saturday at Dundalk.

He had a minute and five seconds over the second placed cyclist, Greg Swinand.

Swinand, winner in 2011, and last year’s runner up, John Madden were both pushed down one place to being second and third.

The Clann Eireann man has been enjoying a great season this year, taking the top spot in most of the time trials at local and provincial levels and has featured regularly in this column.

He currently leads the Super Six Series with four straight wins from the four events held so far and has set new record times for ten and 25 miles distances.

John had first set his sights on the title a few months ago - he was too young to take part last year, and his careful planning which included a visit to the entire course the previous week has proved to be well worthwhile.

Other Clann Eireann riders in the veterans championship were Martin McConville and Harry Martin, placed 21st and 22nd at the finish.

Last week’s interclub race run off by the Orchard Wheelers on the Tandragee circuit was hotly contested, and resulted in a narrow win for Alan McKeown (Island Wheelers ) over Clann Eireann’s Conor Grimes.

Other Clannsmen placed were Martin McConville in fourth, John Heverin fifth and Kenny McConaghy eighth. The final interclub race in the 2012 league takes place at Derrymacash next Tuesday with a 7pm start.

In last Thursday’s open ten miles time trial at the Birches, none of the local riders got into the top places. The winner was Daniel Stewart from the East Antrim club.

Away from senior racing Clann Eireann had four of its juvenile squad competing in the Ulster Youth Championships at Moneymore on Sunday.

In the under 12 race James Mulholland and Ruairi Grimes rode extremely well to end just up in the first half of the finishers and in the under 14 race Liam Wilson and Ethan Flavelle raced together throughout the sixteen mile race, coming fifth and sixth in their event.

This coming weekend the Ulster Senior Championships take to the road at Ballymoney on Saturday and the Ulster 10 time trial championship is listed for Sunday.

Lurgan cyclist John Heverin won the title in 2011 and on current form must start favourite to continue to hold the title.

Apart from those races, Declan Mulholland will be the sole Clann Eireann rider at the Irish Youth Championships in Limerick. Declan was a winner last year in the championships and can be expected to do well again.