Brennan takes the day but Byrne consolidates the lead

The Grand Prix Series moved to pastures new for Round 11 – the open green acres of Malahide Castle for the 4 Mile Grass Race.

Conditions were almost perfect as the 27 athletes lined up for the third running of the 4 Mile Grass Race which was run over a 1 mile loop. Half way around the first of four laps two distinct lead groups formed and coming to the end of lap 1 the first group reached the mile marker in 5:26, this group being comprised of William Stafford, Dave Brennan, Martin Tracey and Tom Monks, 20 seconds in arrears a second group had formed consisting of Brendan Buck, Jeremy Walsh, Aidan Creaner and Philip O’Doherty with Maurice McCrohaneat the back of this group, the rest of the field began to string out somewhat and as the field hit the halfway point at the end of lap 2 being reached in 11:02 David Brennan had a 5 second lead over Martin Tracey from William Stafford, who was not in the same shape as he had been earlier in the year, Tom Monks and Brendan Buck making up ground.

As the athletes took the bell at the end of lap 3 David Brennan had a lead of 12 seconds over Martin Tracey with Tom Monks having moved into 3rd withBrendan Buck closing rapidly as William tailed off.

David Brennan took victory in a time of 22:08, from Martin Tracey 22:33 and Brendan Buck overhauling Tom Monks to finish in 23:07.

Slightly further back a superb run was recorded by Jeremy Walsh with 23:37 and also from Aidan Creaner with 23:53.

Yellow jersey man Shay Byrne once again had a solid run finishing 12th with 25:38.

It was good to see Paddy Tuite forget to bring his bike and take part in his first Grand Prix race of 2005, although clearly he was suffering the effects of a San Miguel overdose!.

We had two guests in the race, Brian Johnston finishing on 29:03 and Catherine Fennell in 32:26.

The result on the night was:

1. D. Brennan 22:08

2. M. Tracey 22:33

3. B. Buck 23:07

4. T. Monks 23:13

5. W. Stafford 23:34

6. J. Walsh 23:37

7. A. Creaner 23:53

8. P. O’Doherty 23:58

9. M. McCrohane 24:03

10. Stephen Byrne 24:30

11. D. Hooper 25:31

12. Shay Byrne 25:38

13. K. Murphy 25:46

14. E. Harrisson 26:14

15. A. Coppinger 26:18

16. A. Scully 26:43

17. P. Tuite 27:04

18. A. Smeaton 27:13

19. P. Healy 28:02

20. R. McConville 28:32

21. D. Brady 28:38

22. T. Kiernan 29:01

23. B. Johnston (guest) 29:03

24. M. McFadden 29:51

25. T. Westby 31:03

26. C. Fennell (guest) 32:26

27. M. Ahern 33:34

The results on the handicap system for points in the Grand Prix Series revealed that Shay Byrne, the yellow jersey holder, now consolidates his lead having won the race on +11, from Brendan Buck on +16 and David Brennan, very much a yellow jersey contender, on +20.

The full results of the handicap were:

1. Shay Byrne +11

2. B. Buck +16

3. D. Brennan +20

4. D. Hooper +29

5. J. Walsh +40

6. A. Coppinger +43

7. D. Brady +46

8. E. Harrisson +53

9. M. Tracey +57

10. M. McCrohane +1:08

11. P. Healy +1:10

12. T. Monks +1:14

13. M. Scully +1:17

14. T. Kiernan +1:21

= S. Byrne +1:21

= K. Murphy +1:21

17. T. Westby +1:34

18. R. McConville +1:41

19. M. Ahern +1:42

20. A. Smeaton +2:09

21. M. McFadden +2:24

22. W. Stafford +2:27

23. P. O’Doherty +2:37

24. A. Creaner +3:10

25. P. Tuite +5:25

The effect on the leader board now means that Shay Byrne retains and indeed consolidates his grip on the yellow jersey having stretched his lead over David Brennan to a massive 2½ points! –

The Leader Board reads:

1. Shay Byrne – 113

2. David Brennan – 110.5

3. David Brady – 104.5

4. J. Walsh – 89.5

5. P. Devitt – 88.5

= Stephen Byrne – 88.5

7. R. Connolly – 88

8. C. Doran – 82

9. T. Monks – 78.5

10. P. O’Doherty – 76

A most enjoyable evening in Malahide – particularly for the local midget population!.

Round 12 is incorporated in the Club 10M Championship for the Ahern Cup and this will take place on Saturday the 17th of September at 11.30 a.m.