By Martin Ayres Padraig Marrey needed all his do-or-die spirit to snatch victory in last Friday’s John Holian memorial race at Cross. The handicap field came together in a spectacular sprint at the end. But it was a close run thing because Marrey and his scratch group were forced to chase for most of the 35-miles race .
“We didn’t catch the bunch until a mile to go,” said Marrey. “There was no time to take a breather, it was a case of going straight through.” Thundering into Cross, the field had to negotiate a very tricky right-hander with 200 metres to go. Marrey was second into the corner but emerged in first place and held on to cross the line a clear winner from Sligo’s Mike Devins and Galway’s Ruaidhri Geraghty .
The Western Lakes promotion attracted 62 racers plus 25 leisure cyclists who also rode the course, based on Cross, The Neale and Cong. All enjoyed a well organised event held in memory of the late John Holian a founder member of the Western Lakes club and a great stalwart of cycling in Connacht. Holian Transport, Cross gave a perpetual trophy, and the event was sponsored by O’Malley’s Bar.
RESULT: 1, Padraig Marrey (Western Lakes); 2, Mike Devins (Eire Og); 3, Ruaidhri Geraghty (Galway Bay); 4, Nigel Forde (Galway Bay); 5, Cyril Canvaroue (Castlebar CC); 6, Graham Casey (Western Lakes); 7, Daire Mooney (Eire Og); 8, Tony Bourke (Galway Bay); 9, Michael Brady (Covey Wh Westport CC); 10, Aiden Reade (Black Rose Racing)
Winner of the Primes
1st Prime Alan Flaherty Western Lakes CC
2nd Prime Ray Staunton Covey Wheelers
3rd Prime Bernard Gereathy Western Lakes CC
4th Prime Colm Casey Eire Og Sligo