Setanta Sports will be providing coverage of the 2013 International Junior Tour of Ireland cycling race in County Clare from July 2-7.
Race organisers say the Irish sports broadcaster has committed itself to broadcasting highlighted coverage of the six stages in the world’s longest junior (U18) event.
The 500-kilometre race will once again attract strong international competition with up to 80 of the best junior cyclists in the world competing against Ireland’s most promising young cyclists.
Last year’s six-stage event, which was held in County Mayo, was won by 17-year-old Colin Joyce of U.S. team Hot Tubes who finished ahead of U.S. teammate Curtis White. Stena Line Ireland team member and Newry-native Cormac Clarke, also 17, finished in third.
Meanwhile, the Stena Line Ireland Team to take compete in this year’s Junior Tour has been announced and includes Thomas Fallon (Galway), Eddie Dunbar (Cork), Matthew Doyle (Derry) and Dylan Foley (Cork). Teams representing all four Irish provinces and clubs from all over Ireland also will be participating, while international teams will be travelling from Holland (2 teams), USA, France and Britain (1 team each).
Three of the race stages will start and finish in Ennis with the remaining three finishing in Barefield, Cooraclare and Gallows Hill. The race will feature 21 categorised hills consisting of 2 Category 1 Climbs (Castle Hill in Doolin and Gallows Hill in Cratloe), 4 Category 2 Climbs and 15 Category 3 climbs. The stages incorporate all parts of the County including the Burren, the Lough Derg area, along the Shannon Estuary and some of the county’s main population areas, including Ennis, Kilrush, Ennistymon, Newmarket-on-Fergus, Sixmilebridge, Scarriff and Killaloe.
Race organiser, Alice Sherratt stated: “The volume of climbs featured in the six stages makes this year’s Junior Tour of Ireland one of the toughest in recent years. We look forward to what will be a very competitive event with some of the world’s best junior cyclists competing against each other. We are also delighted that Setanta will be providing international TV coverage which will help showcase the event to a much wider audience.”
A one-hour highlights programme will be supplied by sports TV company Irish Sports Network, with Setanta, Premier Sports in the UK and a number of channels in Africa also taking pictures.
Presenter Will Downing commented: “The International Junior Tour of Ireland is an exciting event that always showcases the best young talent in cycling, and we’re delighted to be able to put a large spotlight on the up-and-coming stars in the sport right now.”
The main sponsor of the 2013 Junior Tour of Ireland is http://www.thewarehouse.ie, owned by Clare man and renowned sports patron Martin Donnelly. The event is supported by Clare County Council, while other sponsors include the Kingspan Insulation, Cycling Ireland, Stena Line Ireland, Dectek, Spin 11, and I.V.C.A (Irish Veterans Cycling Association).
For more visit http://www.juniortourofireland.com.
Further information and high-resolution event images:
Gary McIlroy, Irish Road Club, 00353-864088822
Mark Dunphy, Dunphy PR, 00353-868534900 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Stage 1 of the Tour on Tuesday 2nd July involves an 11km Individual Time Trial take place in Clarecastle. The 118km Stage 2 on Wednesday 3rd July will begin in Ennis and finish in Barefield, passing through Newmarket on Fergus, Sixmilebridge, Truagh, Killaloe, Ogonnolloe, Tuamgraney, Scarriff, Killanena and Crusheen.
Stage 3 on Thursday 4th July will take place over 103km and will start and finish in Ennis passing through Inch, Connolly, The Hand, Miltown Malbay, Spanish Point, Lahinch, Liscannor, Cliffs of Moher, Kilfenora and Corofin. The 109km Stage 4 on Friday 5th July will once again start and finish in the Clare County Capital and will take cyclists through Corofin, Kilnaboy, the Burren National Park, Ballyvaughan, Black Head, Fanore, Doolin, Castle Hill, Kilshanny and Ennistymon.
Stage 5 on Saturday 6th July will see cyclists compete over an 80km route through West Clare. The Stage will start in Ennis and finish in Cooraclare and will pass through Kildysart, Labasheeda, Kilmurry McMahon, Kilrush and Kilmihil. The final stage (Stage 6) on Sunday 7th July and will see competitors begin in Ennis and finish on a climb at Gallows Hill in southeast Clare. En route, cyclists will pass through Barefield, Crusheen, Maghera, Tulla, O’Callaghan’s Mills, Broadford, Truagh, Sixmilebridge and Cratloe.