The final touches have been put to the plans for the An Post RAS overnight visit to the Castleisland area. The Stage finish is on Tuesday next (24th) with the Stage starting on Wednesday when the race leaves for Castletownbere via Currow. The timng of all the events are as follows;
Tuesday 24th May
8am – The participants doing the Race the RAS in aid of the Irish Cancer Society and GOAL will leave Kilrush with the intention of staying ahead of the RAS proper
11am – The AN POST RAS Tailteann will leave Kilrush
1pm (approx) – The Race the RAS competitors will enter the town for the first time. This arrival time will be hugely infleunced by the wind direction and speed on the day.
1.20pm (approx) – The finish of the Race the RAS on Upper Main Street
1.40pm – Welcome speeches from the Mayor of Kerry Pat Leahy and local councillor Bobby O’Connell. Presentations will then be made to the RAS Tailteann winner of 1953 Mick “the Iron Man” Murphy where the Cahirciveen native represented Castleisland on the Kerry team and to Mick Galwey as long as he completes the stage which we know he will!
1.50pm – Prizes awarded to the Art competition winners and Best Shop Window Display
2pm – The Community College Transition Years along with Billy O’Rourke have made a bicycle and will display it as the pass through the finish line with it. Rumour has it that Mossy Casey might be on board at some stage!
2.20pm (approx) – The main event of the day will pass through as the An POST RAS stage 3 enters the town for the first time. It will then go out College road and up past Crag Caves to the first Catagory 1 hill of the race.
2.35pm (approx) – The stage end on upper main street followed by the presentations of the various stage prizes and race leader jerseys by Miss An POST Ras Amber Key as well as the sponsors representatives who include Michael O’Muirceartaigh on behalf of the Irish Sports Council sponsoring the white jersey for the leading under 23 cyclist. There will also be the presentation of the Jackie O’Connor award for the first Kerry Cyclist over the line.
It is hoped that the St Kierans Ceoltas Group will play during the day also and Radio Kerry will broadcast from the Main Street during the day as well as having Weeshie Fogarty carrying out interviews for his Terrace Talk show.
The sponsors will also have some freebies such as tee shirts, stationery and general goodies around the stage finish as well as some other competions for very generous prizes. A race mascot Ruairi the RAS has been added this year.
Conradh na Gaeilge are also helping the race and promoting the Irish language as they have before in the RAS Tailteann.
On the actual racing front there are cyclists from over ten countries entered and Kerryman Paul Griffin has been given the honour of leading the Skoda Irish team into action. Listowels Eugene Moriarty is a leading cyclist on the Dectec Cycleways team. Many stars such as Mick Galwey, Seamus Moynihan, Killian Burns, John O’Keeffe, Ger Power a well as many other GAA players have signed up for the Race the RAS.
Wednesday 25th May
On Wednesday morning the cyclists will sign on at an Riocht and assemble at 10.40am for a ceremonial start as they begin their racing at 11am entering Currow about six minutes later. The Race the RAS cyclists will have left at 8am.
Traffic restrictions will be in place and all dog owners are asked to ensure they cant get out onto the road for safety reasons.
So lets see as many people as possible on the roads and streets to cheer on the Men of the RAS 2011.