Welcome to Omagh Wheelers Cycling Club
Voted 'Best Club of the Year' by Cycling Ireland
2018 McCann Cup sponsored by Ballymore Services
The 16th edition of the McCann Cup took place in dry, but bitterly cold conditions at Fintona on Sunday 18th March. A record number of entries from across the north and south travelled to Fintona for the popular race sponsored by Ballmore Services. A full suite of races was on offer including Womens, Masters, A4, A3 and the main A1/A2 race.
In the A1/A2 race, a full field took to the start line with the A2 riders getting a handicap advantage of 3mins. However, the A1s behind quickly got to business and 7 riders broke away from the 40 rider pack and bridged the 3min gap after only 25miles of racing. An intense period of attacking following, after which 10 riders then went clear: Darnell Moore, Craig McAuley, Mark McClure and Mark Buchanan (Caldwell Cycles), Ronan McLaughlin & Craig Rea (Viner-Caremark-Pactimo), Gareth O’Neill (Newry Wheelers), John Buller (Banbridge CC), Conor McCann (Inspired Cycling) and local rider Marc Potts from Beragh.
The 10 riders quickly established a gap and continued to pull away from the rest of the field. That stayed the position until with 2 laps to go, the group exploded after an array of attacks. Once the dust settled, 3 riders lost touch including McClure, O’Neill and Buller. The lull didn’t last long as Potts and McLaughlin attacked again driving the pace which would distance a further 2 riders: Buchanan and Rea. That left 5 riders at the head of affairs. As the group started the final lap, Potts attacked again and after a final flourish of attacks McAuley and Potts forged ahead leaving the 3 riders behind to battle it out for 3rd. The leading duo built a gap of almost 1minute by the line, with Commonwealth Games rider Potts taking the verdict over McAuley from Caldwell Cycles. Team-mate Darnell Moore topped off the podium.
Race Organiser Hugh McCann gave thanks afterwards to everyone who helped make the event a massive success: main sponsor Ballymore Services; JB Plant; PSNI; local clubs Strabane-Lifford CC, Termon Wheelers, and Omagh Motor Club; local residents, Carnlea Catering; St Patrick’s Hall Fintona; Ian Barfoot, Cycling Ireland Commissaires; and all the many helpers and volunteers from Omagh Wheelers CC…without everyone’s help such a quality of event would not be possible.
A1/2 race – 70 miles
A3 race – 60miles
A4 race – 40miles
Womens – 30miles
Masters – 30miles
Three of Omagh Wheelers talented crop of youngsters picked up awards at the recent Cycling Ulster Awards ceremony.
Somhairle Owens fisher was awarded for performance on the track, on the road and most recently for performance during the Ulster Cyclocross Season. The highlight was a gold medal in the Ulster U-14 Time Trial event. Somhairle was also runner up in the Cycling Ulster Youth Academy League and picked up a bronze medal at the Ulster CX championships in Mallusk as well as finishing third in the Ulster CX League.
Somhairle was joined on the podium on various podiums by another U-14 Joseph Owens who was awarded for top performances on the road. Joe was the bronze medal winner at the Ulster U-14 Time Trial. Joe also had a strong CX season winning the Phoenix CC event at Lady Dixon Park in Belfast.
Representing the Girls Rachel Mc bride was rewarded for a year of improvement with a Silver Medal in the Junior Ladies category at the Ulster Cyclocross Championships and a top ten finish in the Ulster CX league. Rachel also won the U-15 CUYA Girls League title.
These youngsters are all a product of the thriving youth program being delivered by Omagh Wheelers. In 2018 the youth program is being headed by Charlie Fisher with coaching programmes being developed by Olly Logan and Stevie Mc Kenna.
On a fantastic night for the Omagh Club, the Tour Of Omagh A4 and Ladies 3 Day Race was also signled out for praise lifting the award for best competitive event in Ulster. Club Chairman Sean Kelly, Race Director Stevie Mc Kenna and long-time race supported Mark Mc Aleer were on hand to receive the award on behalf of the Club.
This was fitting recognition for an event which is now the best of its kind in Ireland.