Race Report: Kelan Grant and Leah Maunsell Win Vitus First Tracks Enduro in Ravensdale

Apr 9, 2019
by Yaroslav Alpizar  

What an amazing day for racing folks! After several days of raining but a full Saturday of sunshine and wind, Sunday morning provided the riders with the best conditions possible. Although the first riders to start at 9:30 still found some mud on the first 2 stages, top seeded riders departed at 12:30 and found almost perfect trails to ride.

Starting with Holy Grail rider Kelan Grant (CRC) made it seem easy, winning by over 4 seconds from the U21 Harry Byrne and 5 seconds over the also U21 Drew Armstrong (Vitus First Tracks Race Division). Next was Red Alert with some tight switchbacks and pedally muddy sections. On this stage, it was Kelan again grabbing the win, extending his lead. Second was James MacFerran (Cycleology Racing) and third Ben Irwin (Mech Monkey).

Next, the stage that many considered to be the best one of the race, stage 3, Old timer. Fast. It was almost dry and the riders could enjoy more speed and loosen the brakes. Kelan Gran,t fresh from the first two EWS rounds, came first again, almost cementing his overall win. Harry Byrne and Drew Armstrong repeated 2nd and 3rd respectively after Kelan. Last but not least, Born Slippy, with some DH features, jumps and doubles, to end the day with a big smile on everyone's faces. No need to say it, Kelan won with a comfortable 7second margin over the youngsters Harry Byrne and Drew Armstrong. There's some good fresh blood on the Irish races that stand out, with these young lads.

On the women category current Irish champion Leah Maunsell had almost a full stage win, a crash impeded her to win the last stage, grabbing 3rd, but enough to win the overall. The battle for the 2nd and 3rd places was in between Hannah Harvey (CRC) and Meave Baxter who swapped positions on almost every stage. Hannah won the last one and Meave was second, Leah came third and lost almost 20 seconds but had enough in reserve to keep the 1st place.

The Four Horsemen, ready to storm the trails

Starting the day with the queue to grab the chip.

11 women in total started, 11 finished the race, well done!

Did I win?
Titanium is real.

Early morning and the trails inside the forest were still wet and muddy for the first few riders.

Glyn O'Brien (Vitus First Tracks Race Division), flying to win the Veteran Men 40-49 category.

Not the best day, shock died, then hanger.
Kids wanna have fun.

Jack Devlin (Vitus First Tracks Race Division), with some EWS racing under his belt, didn't had the best of his days, but managed to grab 3rd U21 and 6th overall.


U21 rider Harry Byrne had an awesome day on his bike, grabbing first on his category and 2nd overall.

Another legend of the Irish mtb, Garreth Davis (Biking.ie), didn't had the best of his days, shock died on last stage and came 69th, grabbing 24th on the overall


Total darkness inside the forest

Did I mention slippery roots? The struggle was real on these snake sections.

There were still some muddy sections, but not enough to stop Kelan.
Don't think you will drink much from there.

Tommy Magnenat ended 6th U21, promises to come stronger for next round.

Ronan Dunne (Biking.ie/Vitus Bikes) had a consistent day to end 8th on the overall.

Volunteers, without them is impossible to do these events.

Junior Men: Niall Clerkin, Brendan Conroy, Robbie Dugan.
Youth: Callum Morris, Jay Mccord, Matthew Moore.

Veteran Men (40-49): Glyn O'Brien, Derek McLaughlin, Michael Cowan.
Super Vet Men (50+): Brian Finnegan, Marcus Swail, John Glover.

U21 category: Harry Byrne, Drew Armstrong, Jack Devlin.
MasterB Men (35-39): Philip Mullan, Lucas Wolczyk.

Leah Maunsell, Queen of The Mountain, with Hannah Harvey and Meave Baxter.

Kelan Grant, King of The Mountain, Harry Byrne and Drew Armstrong.


MENTIONS: @glynobrien / @VitusBikes / @ChainReactionCycles



6 Comments

  • 5 1
 Deadly weekend and great wee write up. Way more volunteers than made the photo too.
  • 1 0
 thanks! and yes, tons of volunteers indeed!
  • 3 0
 Great weekends racing and a very well organized event. We had a ball, roll on the next round. Kudos to Vitus Enduro.
  • 1 0
 yeah! Bigwood will be fun!
  • 3 0
 Great photos and write up
  • 1 0
 thanks mate! looking forward for next race in Bigwoods and next weekend in Ballinastoe for the Gravity Series

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