A gang of eight Orwell Wheelers took part in the Leinster Cyclocross Championships on Swords on Sunday.

Leinster Cyclocross Championships

Swords Cycling Club hosted the Leinster Cyclocross Championships in Swords in the same venue but a different course to the National Cyclocross Championships last year. In the women's race Orwell had a sole entrant with Naoise Sheridan. However Naoise was struck with a mechanical in the first lap when her front brakes failed completely. As a result she had to pull out.

Valdis in the B race (photograph with thanks to Paul Atkinson)

In the B race, six clubmen took on the challenging circuit: Valdis Andersons, Barry Keogh, Richard Cattle, John Blennerhasselt and Luke GJ Potter. Valdis took the top result for the club with 5th place in what was, in his own words, by far the most difficult cyclocross race he has had to date. Eric Downey provided mechanical assistance to Valdis during the race and lent Valdis his spare bike.

"Got off to a good start, was 5th or 6th wheel when remounting, overtook all but the mountain biker on the tarmac/grass straight. I lost a bit of ground to the mountain biker in the forest singletrack section but I was gaining a bit on him on the less technical parts of the circuit and was quite close to him on the first tarmac uphill. Then my chain unshipped, I got it back on but the mountain biker was gone. I wasn't a happy camper going up the hill and unshipped the chain again at the top of that same hill. I changed bike but I couldn't get used to the handling of the spare bike in the mud, I came off a good few times on the second lap. Swapped bike back for lap 3 (or the other half of lap 2, no idea how many laps we did at the end), didn't unship the chain until the last lap. The mud was getting harder to ride through and the last two laps I was running through most of the lower mud plains. It felt a lot quicker and less leg sapping than trying to grind my way through. My remounting needs work though. On the second to last lap I made a total mess of the steep descent coming out of the woods. Some trees got in my way - one of them moved away while the other one wasn't so kind. Ribcage 0 : 1 Tree. Landed on my back in some thorny stuff, marshal came to assist, nothing seemed to be broken so carried on."

After the race, Luke GJ Potter said it was "slipperier than a FIFA Ex-Co member's Finances."

Eric with the big guns in the A race (photograph thanks to Paul Atkinson)

In the A race, Robin Seymour took victory with Orwell Wheelers' Eric taking a fine 7th place. Valdis and Uisneach Sheridan provided mechanical assistance to Eric during the race.

Valdis and Uisneach in the pitt during the A race (photograph with thanks to Genevieve Sheridan)

Leinster Cyclocross Championships (06/12/2015)

Elite Men

1 Robin Seymour
2 Sean O Tuathail
3 Evan Ryan
7 Eric Downey


1 Maeve O' Grady
2 Fran Meehan
3 Rose Griffin
DNF Naoise Sheridan

Crossmaxx B race

1 Kary Connolly
2 Thomas Hickey
3 Tadgh Kelly
5 Valdis Andersons
10 Barry Keogh
11 Richard Cattle
13 John Blennerhassett
22 Barry Mooney
24 Luke GJ Potter