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Irish Cyclo-cross Championships - CN
Ireland, January 11, 2009
Seymour delivers no-surprise performance
By Shane Stokes
Multiple Irish champion Robin Seymour today scooped a remarkable sixteenth national cyclo-cross crown, outsprinting Conor McConvey at the end of the seven lap contest in Lurgan Park.
Seymour (Team WORC) and McConvey (McConvey Cycles/FELT International) were regarded as the clear pre-race favourites and so it turned out, with the duo breaking clear of the rest of the field on the opening lap and slugging out the remainder of the race between them.
37-year-old Seymour and 19-year-old McConvey were very evenly matched on the fast, flowing course, both unable to open up a decisive lead over the other. The result came down to the final 100 metres, where the Wicklow man had enough speed and determination to get the better of his younger rival.
Third place today went to Newry rider Conor Campbell, with Seymour's teammate Richie Felle in fourth. The latter had been running third until the final lap but lost time due to a puncture. IMBRC's Paul O'Reilly was next home, sewing up the junior title with his fifth place overall, while Glen Kinning (Castereagh) completed the top six. Aidan McDonald (Apollo) was seventh and first veteran. Francine Meehan (Tullamore CC) was best of the women, and the efforts of Seymour, Felle and Dave Gill earned the team title for WORC.
The race was run off in pleasant conditions, and the only significant mud 0was encountered in the drainage ditch section. It also had two plank obstacles, one of which was on a hill, but these did little to slow down the top riders.
As expected after the non-start of 2008 champion Roger Aiken, the battle for gold today was all about two competitors. McConvey is seen as the up and coming off-road rider and is tipped by many for a big future, while Seymour is a triple Olympian who had taken fifteen cross titles in seventeen years, as well as fifteen successive mountain bike championships. He has now added yet another medal to that stunning haul.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Myles McCorry
Elite men 1 Robin Seymour (Team WORC) 2 Conor McConvey (McConvey Cycles/FELT International) 3 Conor Campbell (Newry) 4 Richie Felle (Team WORC) 5 Paul O'Reilly (IMBRC) 6 Glen Kinning (Castlereagh) 7 Aidan McDonald (Apollo) – veterans champion Teams classification 1 Team Worc (Seymour/ Felle/ Dave Gill) Juniors 1 Paul O'Reilly (IMBRC) 2 Matt Adair (Banbridge) Elite women 1 Francine Meehan (Tullamore CC)
2008 Roger Aiken (Banbridge) 2007 Robin Seymour (Team WORC)