Commentary from Stage 5 2011

Stage 5

11.10: Good morning and welcome to live coverage from stage five of this year's An Post Rás. We will be uploading the coverage a little later today - apologies for this delay, which is partly due to computer issues. 

11.20: To recap what's happened thus far: 

At Adrigole (km 14.8) twelve riders went clear and opened a good gap. Those present were Adam Semple (Australia Drapac Cycling), Rhys Pollock (Australia Drapac Cycling), Mark Cassidy (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly), Romain Ramier (France AVC Aix en Provence), Hector Gonzalez (Greece KTM Murica), Bernardo Riccio (Italy D’Angelo & D’Antenucci), James McCallum (Britain Rapha Condor Sharp), Steven Lampier (Britain Sigma Specialized Team), Tobyn Horton (Britain Motorpoint), Paul Oldham (Britain Scienceinsport.com), Derek Finnegan (Meath Stamullen M. Donnelly) and Neill Delahaye (Meath Dectek). 

Very soon after they hit the first climb, and here's the results: 

KOM category 3 at Traflask (km 16.8)

1, Adam Semple (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
2, Rhys Pollock (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
3, Hector Gonzalez (Greece KTM Murica) 
4, Paul Oldham (Britain Scienceinsport.com) 


Nikolay Mihaylov (France AVC Aix en Provence) bridged across on the second climb, that of Loughavaul. 


KOM category 3 at Loughavaul (km 25): 

1, Adam Semple (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
2, Rhys Pollock (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
3, Hector Gonzalez (Greece KTM Murica) 
4, Paul Oldham (Britain Scienceinsport.com) 

Finnegan and Delahaye have been dropped, so there's eleven leaders. 

11.30: There's been a crash approximately 20 kilometres after the race. Several riders have packed; we don't know their numbers. 

Dean Downing (Rapha Condor Sharp) was disqualified, apparently for holding onto a car. That must have been a long tow for the stage one winner?

11.51: The leaders have done 33 kilometres. 

Here's the results of the next climb: 

KOM category 3 at Derrycreha (km 36.8):

1, Adam Semple(Australia Drapac Cycling) 
2, Rhys Pollock(Australia Drapac Cycling) 
3, Romain Ramier(France AVC Aix en Provence) 
4, Nikolay Mihaylov(France AVC Aix en Provence) 


11.56: Mark Cassidy (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton Sean Kelly) has just gone back to the main bunch; presumably he's goig to help in the chase of this break. 

11.59: The gap is now one minute 8 seconds. 

12.07: The leaders are now 55 seconds clear heading into Bantry. 

12.13: After 50 kilometres of racing, heading out of Bantry, the gap is down to 33 seconds. 

The leaders are starting the fourth KOM, the third category climb of Ardyhoulihane (km 53). 

12.17: McCallum has been dropped from the break. The gap is 27 seconds. We haven't yet had confirmation of the results of that most recent climb. 

12.20: The gap remains at 27 seconds. 

12.27: After 62 kilometres of racing, the field is all together once again? 

12.30: There are now two riders clear - Lachlann Norris (Australia Drapac Professional) and David O'Loughlin (Waterford Comeragh). 

12.32: They are now 12 seconds clear. They have a tailwind to push them along; this should help them open a gap, and may encourage others to try to bridge. 

12.35: Sure enough, four riders have set off in pursuit. They are Myron Simpson (New Zealand National Team), Johannes Kahra (Germany Thuringer Energie), Dean Windsor (Britain Rapha Condor Sharp) and Tobyn Horton (Britain Motorpoint). They are 15 seconds back, while the peloton is now at 25 seconds. 

12.38: The chasers have bridged across, so there's now six leaders. 

12.39: Marc Ryan (New Zealand) has decided to pack the race. We are not sure of the reason. 

The gap is holding at 18 seconds. 

12.48: The gap has jumped up to one minute 35 seconds; that's encouraging for the break, needless to say. 

12.49: The An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly team of race leader Gediminas Bagdonas continues to do all the work. 

12.52: That gap has continued to soar: two minutes five seconds now after 79 kilometres of racing. They've passed the halfway point on the stage. 

12.57: The skies are clearing in parts; it's not sunny, as such, but it's definitely brighter than yesterday was. 

13.00: The break is now two minutes 46 seconds ahead. The best placed overall is Dean Windsor, who is 3 minutes 42 behind Bagdonas. 

13.10: Windsor looks like he is heading towards being the yellow jersey on the road; he and the break are now three minutes 15 seconds up, so he's got another 27 seconds to go before becoming the virtual race leader. 

The An Post team are presumably giving this move some slack before chasing harder later. The break will aim to build a good lead and also to keep something in reserve to resist the inevitable pursuit. 

13.14: The sun is very much out now, so that's a welcome change to the weather. It's really been tough for the riders in recent days. 

The break further extends its lead; three minutes 28 seconds now, so Windsor needs just 14 seconds more to have the maillot jaune virtuel distinction. 

13.20: He does so; the break goes up to four minutes. 

13.25: The bunch has now responded and the gap has fallen to two minutes 50 seconds. 

13.31: The An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly team has been doing most of the riding, aided at times by the Ukraine ISD Lmpare team. They have reduced the gap to two minutes? 

The break is heading into Bandon (km 68). 

13.45: After 116 kilometres of racing, the gap is two minutes 33 seconds - it went back up, but we presume the bunch is riding tempo. The riders are starting the category two climb of Moskeagh?

After this, the final climb of the day is at Windy Gap, which tops out at km 130.7. That's 25 kilometres from the end of the stage, so it remains to be seen if it's far enough away to allow for a regrouping or if the stage winning move will indeed go from that platform. 

13.55: The break continues out front; the peloton continues to chase behind. 

Here's the results of a recent climb: 

KOM category 2 at Moskeagh (km 120.2):

1, Lachlann Norris (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
2, Dean Windsor (Britain Rapha Condor Sharp) 
3, Tobyn Horton (Britain Motorpoint) 
4, David O’Loughlin (Waterford Comeragh) 
5, Myron Simpson (New Zealand National Team) 
6, Johannes Kahra (Germany Thuringer Energie)


14.00: The gap is two minutes five seconds. This break is just hovering off the front, and we anticipate a big change on or after the day's final climb. 

14.10: The gap is down to one minute 45 seconds. The break is on the day's final climb, the category two Windy Gap. It's windy. 

14.11: The leaders are over the top, and Norris attacked. He has a decent lead heading past the 25km to go sign. 

14.15: The gap from Norris back to the bunch is down to one minute 35 seconds - This could well come back together before the finish. 

14.17: Confirmed results from the day's final climb: 

1, Lachlann Norris (Australia Drapac Cycling) 
2, Dean Windsor (Britain Rapha Condor Sharp) 
2, Tobyn Horton (Britain Motorpoint) 
4, David O’Loughlin (Waterford Comeragh) 
5, Myron Simpson (New Zealand National Team) 
6, Johannes Kahra (Germany Thuringer Energie) 


Norris is 13 seconds ahead of the five chasers - will he Chuck, or will he weaken? 

14.18: They have just passed the 20 kilometres to go board. Norris looked to be sitting up, but has now put the head down again. Chuck it is. 

We've just passed the break; David O'Loughlin is driving it along in pursuit of Norris. He hasn't raced much this year, but looks strong today. 

14.24: Norris continues onwards, and may be helped by sheltered roads. He is one minute 23 seconds ahead of the main field, with the rest of the break 18 seconds back. 

14.27: Latest gap: one minute six seconds. 

14.30: Kahra has been dropped by the chasers. Norris is riding very strongly and is 28 seconds clear of the other four. 

14.34: With seven kilometres to go, the four chasers are at 20 seconds. The peloton is 51 seconds back; this could all come back together. If he does stay clear, the gaps will be tight - could be dramatic in Blarney!

14.35: We are trying to get online but the connection has dropped - this will be posted as soon as possible. 

14.40: He's just 28 seconds behind - they are inside the last five kilometres, and we suggest he'll be caught. 

He's been hauled back by the break. They have four kilometres to go. 

14.44: Norris has been caught and dropped - Simpson has attacked alone and has one kilometre left - he could do it? 

14.46: He does it! He wins by a few seconds...the rest of the break were caught.

15.00: Actually, Tobyn Horton (Team Motorpoint) managed to take second - just about. Bastian Burgel (Germany Thuringer Energie) and Bernardo Riccio (Italy D’Angelo & D’Antenucci) were third and fourth. 

Gediminas Bagdonas (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly) keeps his overall lead - no change there. 

Here's the results - gotta run for quotes! Thanks for reading today, come back later for a full report, results and video. 


An Post Rás, stage 5: Castletownbere to Blarney:

1, Myron Simpson (New Zealand National Team) 156 kilometres in 3 hours 42 mins 44 secs
2, Tobyn Horton (Team Motorpoint) at 4 secs
3, Bastian Burgel (Germany Thuringer Energie) 
4, Bernardo Riccio (Italy D’Angelo & D’Antenucci) 
5, Jakob Steigmiller (Germany Thuringer Energie) 
6, Shane Archbold (New Zealand National Team) 
7, Aaron Gate (New Zealand National Team) 
8, James McCallum (Britain Rapha Condor Sharp) 
9, Gediminas Bagdonas (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly) 
10, Ralf Matzka (Germany Thuringer Energie) 


General classification after five stages: 

1, Gediminas Bagdonas (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly) 20 hours 22 mins 3 secs
2, Oleksandr Sheydyk (Ukraine ISD-Lampre Continental) at 1 min 16 secs
3, Nikolay Mihaylov (France AVC Aix en Provence) same time
4, Peter Williams (Britain Motorpoint) at 1 min 27 secs
5, Aaron Gate (New Zealand National Team) at 1 min 31 secs
6, Simon Richardson (Britain Sigma Specialized Team) 
7, Floris Goesinnen (Australia Drapac Cycling) both same time
8, Shane Archbold (New Zealand National Team) at 2 mins 17 secs
9, Stuart Shaw (Australia Drapac Cycling) at 2 mins 21 secs
10, Anatoliy Pakhtusov (Ukraine ISD-Lampre Continental) same time


Points jersey: Gediminas Bagdonas (Belgium An Post Grant Thornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly)
Mountains: Oleksandr Sheydyk (Ukraine ISD-Lampre Continental) 
Under 23: Aaron Gate (New Zealand National Team)

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