After yesterday’s hectic racing you’d have thought the riders would settle down a bit on the flat 106-mile stage from Trim to Oranmore but the first 60 miles saw restless break after break with 6 breaks before riding in to Coosan. As on yesterday’s stage, it was the Scandinavia Bianchi Nordic team featuring heavily in the breaks with the Ireland and Slovenia Perutnina teams also keeping the peleton in check, but the pack as a whole worked well in reeling each break back in.
The first promising break of the day was from Ireland rider David O’Loughlin who has been riding stongly over the last few races and fellow Irishman Brian Aherne from Dublin Orwell. The pair were quickly joined by Ireland rider Dennis Lynch and the trio opened up a 50 second lead to Mark Lovatt from Yorkshire Murphy & Gunn and the Slovenian team who reeled them back in again at 71 miles. The pack slowed considerably and then fractured into a lead group of 39 riders including yesterday’s yellow jersey, Bonca, and almost all from the top teams plus two smaller chasing groups over a minute back.
Shortly before the 25km to go mark, Stefan Cohnen from Germany ComNet Senges opened up a 21-second lead with chases coming from Tommy Evans and David McCann from Team Ireland and Winn/Lovatt/Dawson from Yorkshire Murphy & Gunn, each time not reaching the Dutch rider and the pack absorbing them back.
At the line Cohnen held an eight-second lead on McCann with Malcolm Elliott third leading in the rest of the large group.
Yesterday’s yellow jersey, Valter Bonca, keeps yellow for another day.
1. Cohnen, Stefan (Germany ComNet Senges) 3h54’12”
2. McCann, David (Ireland Thorntons Recycling) +08″
3. Elliott, Malcom (Yorkshire Murphy & Gunn) s/t
4. Gunn, Curtis (USA/BRITAIN) s/t
5. Griffen, Paul (Kerry) s/t
1. Bonca, Valter (Slovenia Perutnina) 6h55’28”
2. Renang, Petter (Scandinavia Bianchi Nordic) +06″
3. Lovatt, Mark (Yorkshire Murphy & Gunn) +18″
4. O’Loughlin, David (Ireland Thorntons Recycling) +22″
5. Malarczyk, Anthony (Wales Stena Line) +28″
6. Cohnen, Stefan (Germany Comnet Senges) +01’58”
1. Slovenia Perutnina
2. Scandinavia Bianchi Nordic
3. Yorkshire Murphy & Gunn
4. Ireland Thorntons Recycling
5. Wales Stena Line
Tuesday’s stage takes us 152km to Charleville and includes four third-category climbs in the space of 15 miles.