Report: Dean Downing Wins Stage 1 of RAS

Rapha’s Dean Downing showed he has the good form ahead of the Halfords Tour Series when he won the first stage of the AN Post RAS. The UCI ranked event is over 8 days and features an international line up of riders from around the world.

Stage 1 over 148 kilometres was as ever, an aggressive affair as the 172 riders took to the Irish roads with heavy rain falling on them. With breaks going away and no-one wanting to let them go very far up the road, the pace was high which on the heavy roads and tough conditions saw the race quickly splintering.

As ever there was a strong British interest in the race. Sigma Sport Specialized had a team in the race and they quickly got involved in the skirmishes as did Rapha’s Aussie Dean Windsor and a rider we interviewed recently, Mark McNally.

Motorpoint also have a team in the race and their Peter Williams was involved in the dangerous looking break along with the aforementioned riders. Moves came and went, as did a race stoppage but the stage ended up coming down to a bunch kick where Dean Downing had time to raise his arms at the end after a lead out from his Rapha Condor Sharp team he was very pleased about.

“I can’t thank the boys enough for today, they were superb. Everyone rode well all day and in the last few hundred metres Jimmy Mac and Dean Windsor did the perfect job of dropping me off. It feels great to come here and take a win straight away, the team is on a real high now”.

The win along with two seconds of time bonuses picked up along the route means Dean will start the second stage with a four second margin at the head of the general classification. The first yellow jersey of the tour is however something that Dean considers an unexpected bonus. “I came here for stage wins really, it’s always a great feeling to wear yellow, but this race is hard to control. We are in the driving seat now, but I’m not looking to the overall myself. We’ll see how the jersey goes, but my focus remains stage wins”.

The An Post Ras continues today with a 164km stage between Portumna to Kilrush.

Follow the Rapha Condor Sharp Twitter feed for up to date race information.

Stage 1.
1 Downing,Dean  Britain Rapha Condor Sharp 3h47’53″
2 Bennett,Sam  Belgium An Post Sean Kelly
3 Brenterch,Erwan    AVC Aix en Provence

5 Horton,Tobyn  Britain Motorpoint
9 Windsor,Dean  Britain Rapha Condor Sharp
13 Bialoblocki,Marcin  Britain Motorpoint
16 Rutherford,Alistair
22 Williams,Peter  Britain Motorpoint  @ 4 secs
23 Field,Ian
26 Lampier,Steve Britain Sigma Specialized
28 McNally,Mark  Belgium An Post Sean Kelly
33 Sampson,James  Britain Motorpoint
39 Richardson,Simon  Britain Sigma Specialized
44 Oldham,Paul
52 Bjergfelt,William  Britain Motorpoint
56 Greenwood,Ben  Britain Rapha Condor Sharp
68 Williamson,James  Britain Sigma Specialized  3h48’10″ @ s/t
80 McCallum,James  Britain Rapha Condor Sharp @22″
87 Copeland,Thomas   Britain Sigma Specialized  3h48’34″ @ s/t
97 Coutts,Alex   Asia Giant Kenda Cycling
103 Munro,Casey   Britain Rapha Condor Sharp
128 Parker,Samuel   Forme Impsport @01’09″
129 Fox,Will    Forme Impsport  @ s/t
140 Orr,Robert  Forme Impsport
150 Hatcher,Graeme   Microgaming  @03’12″
153 Kennaugh,Timothy  Microgaming @03’58″
154 Varley,Christian   Microgaming
159 English,Felix  Ireland Team Skoda @06’51″
169 Yates,Adam  @17’54″

1 Downing,Dean Britain Rapha Condor Sharp 3h47’43″
2 Bennett,Sam Belgium An Post Sean Kelly  @04″
3 Brenterch,Erwan   AVC Aix en Provence @06″
4 McCann,David Asia Giant Kenda Cycling  @07″
5 Windsor,Dean Britain Rapha Condor Sharp  @08″
6 Archbold,Shane New Zealand National Team  @10″
7 Horton,Tobyn Britain Motorpoint 3h47’53″ = s/t
8 Matzka,Ralf Germany Thuringer Energie
9 Martynenko,Oleksander Ukraine ISD-Lampre
10 Benitez Pomares,Javier Greece KTM Murcia

1. Dean Downing

1. Motorpoint