Reigning World Track Champion Among the Entry for Ireland’s Flagship Women’s International Bike Race
Reigning world Scratch Race Champion Stephanie Pohl of Germany is among the star-line up of riders from Europe and beyond for this year’s An Post Rás na mBan women’s international stage race.
Pohl, who won her World Track title in France last February ahead of Giorgia Bronzini and Kirsten Wild among others, is entered with the South Netherlands regional squad supported by Energy HR.
The Netherlands-based rider, fresh from second in the prologue and eighth overall at the Trophee d’Or stage race in France last week, will be using Rás na mBan as her final preparation race for the World Championship road race and time trial in the USA.
Pohl’s South Netherlands squad is one of three Dutch teams in the event including Chris Rouw’s Rás na mBan stalwarts WV Breda Manieu.nl team who include Scotland’s 2014 British Circuit Race Champion Eileen Roe in their selection. Rouw’s team were probably the most aggressive in 2014, scooping two stage wins and numerous other placings across the five days.
Coralie Demay from the Team Breizh squad makes her third consecutive appearance in County Clare and after last year’s fourth place finish, has the experience and the ability to put together an assault on the 2016 title.
Team Rytger scooped the honours on their first visit to Ireland in 2012 with Kamilla Sofie Vallin and the Brian Henriksen-run team has assembled another strong team this year including top Irish junior Ciara Doogan and UK Olympic development rider Abbie Dentus.
Ukysses Hoorn West Frisia is another squad with extensive knowledge of Rás na mBan and will be chasing glory in the tenth edition of the race with a strong five-rider lineup including Pernilla Van Rozelaar and Tessa Neefjes.
Belgium-based Norwegian Katrine Aalerud is part of the Team HBSS Norway squad making their first appearance in Rás na mBan with Swede Malin Berlin also likely to feature.
The QCW Breakawaybikes.com p/b Felt Bicycles team from the USA was the first to confirm its participation in this year’s event. The Pensylvannia team has scored several significant results in local events of late including a stage win and third overall in the Tour of the Catskills for Stefanie Sydliks, a criterium second place for Kristie Nichols James at the same event and a criterium win at the Nittany Stage Race for Elspeth Huyett.
Riders from 13 different countries are represented on the entry list for the five-day, six-stage event starting on September 9th.
In total there are 112 riders with the 24 different squads and the event can expect record participation levels from overseas and local competitors.
The five-day event begins on Wednesday 9th September.