Rás Tailteann Lit up Hill and Valley on its Brief Visit to Castleisland

1972 Rás Tailteann winner and Kerry team cyclist, John Mangan from Killorglin had his great achievement of 50 years ago acknowledged and celebrated in Castleisland at the 2022 Rás stage end on Thursday. Making the presentation is Listowel man former Rás cyclist and Cycling Ireland PRO, Eugene Moriarty with stage end coordinator Eamonn Breen and his son and fellow stage end organiser, John. ©Photograph: John Reidy 16-6-2022
Men and Women of the Rás gathered to honour Kerryman, John Mangan’s great achievement in winning the 1972 Rás Tailteann as part of the small Setanta team at the time. Included in the photograph are front from left: Billy O’Rourke, Kathleen Clifford, Grace Mangan, Jim O’Gorman, Eugene Moriarty and Seamus Donegan, Rás race director. Back from left: Eamonn Breen, Donal Clifford, Eibhlin Scully, Brian Connaughton, John Scully, Denis O’Connell, John Mangan, John McNally, Mickser Collins, John Breen, Tom Daly and Denis Dungworth. ©Photograph: John Reidy
Louis David Sutton of the Brocar Ale team was the new race leader of An Rás Tailteann after stage two from Horse and Jockey to Castleisland. He is pictured here with Women in Sport Officer with Cycling Ireland and Castleisland native, Elaine Cahill. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan 16/6/2002

An Rás Tailteann made a welcome return to Castleisland on Thursday last with the 145Km stage coming from Horse and Jockey outside Thurles.

The Rás entered the town from Scartaglen onto the Main Street up to the Carnegie Library onto College Road and the major climb to Gleansharoon and then the fast descent to the finish via the Old Limerick Road.

The Gleansharoon climb was where Iron man the late Mick Murphy who won the Rás in 1958 used to train with a 56lb. weight tied to the back of his saddle.

Stage Win for Spanish Team Rider

The leading group in this year’s race made light work of the climb as they sped down to the finish in Castleisland.

Louis David Sutton of the Spanish, Brocar-Ale Team finished 11 seconds ahead of William Perett, Spellman Dublin Port with Michael Chadwick of the Britian Embark-Bikestrong team 54 seconds behind the winner.

The overall winner of the race which finished on Sunday last in Blackrock Co. Louth was Darie Feely from Roscommon.

“Incidentally Feely was the winner of the John Drumm Memorial Cup held in Currow this year on the 3rd April,” recalled stage end coordinator and man-of-the-Rás Eamonn Breen.

John Mangan’s ’72 Rás Win Celebrated

At the stage finish in Castleisland on Thursday there was an important side event in which the 1972 Rás Tailteann winner and Killorglin man, John Mangan had his achievement celebrated.

A member of the Setanta Rás team at that time, John was presented with a Cuchulainn trophy to mark a great achievement in winning the Rás Tailteann cycle race fifty years ago.

He was a member of the Killorglin cycling club and won many races in Ireland and later in France where he competed with success against some of the top cyclists.

Great Exposure

Castleisland got great exposure on the RTÉ News, TG4 and TV3 and the stage-end committee headed by Eamonn Breen would like to thank: Kerry County Council; An Gárda Síochána; Castleisland Desmonds GAA Club and The Kerryman for their assistance.

Also thanks to the sponsors: Seán Higgins / Sports Recovery Suite Tralee; Lee Strand Milk; Castleisland Chamber Alliance; River Island Hotel; McElligott’s Furniture and two anonymous donors.

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