Route for Kerry Group Rás Mumhan 2016 announced

Kerry Group Rás Mumhan, Ireland’s premier domestic stage race is pleased to release details of the stages for the 2016 episode of the race. Stage 1, 2 & 4 are the same as last year’s edition of the race. There is a change the route of Stage 3. It is almost entirely over the roads that have been used previously but the order in which they are taken and the directions exiting junctions have been amended. The race is once again unapologetically long and hard. The general race plan includes a demanding opening stage, followed by a long hard day in the mountains. The classic South Kerry stage, while amended, retains its place as the race centrepiece on day three, followed by a flat stage on the final day with includes nine laps of a circuit around Killorglin town.

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Kerry Group Rás Mumhan 2016 stages in detail:

Stage 1: This stage is a very nice introduction to Kerry Group Rás Mumhan with its mixture of drags and narrow winding roads. This stage starts in Killorglin at 3:00pm. The race begins with a trip to Killarney on a good wide flat road that allows any pent up energy to be released. Just after Killarney the race takes a right turn to Kilcummin and, then, on narrow roads with lots of dead drags towards Gneeveguilla. At the Quarry Cross the race turns left and proceeds to the biggest categorised climb of the day at Knocknaboul. It is then back to Castleisland via Scartaglin. From Castleisland the race proceeds to Currans, Ballyfinane, Firies and Milltown before the finish in Killorglin. Total stage distance is 105km approx which makes this a nice gentle warm-up for the remainder of the weekend. Follow the link to see the route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/fullscreen/345346045/

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Stage 2: Saturday is the day for the climbers and this stage will not disappoint them. The stage will start and finish in Kenmare with racing underway at 11:00am. The stage takes us down to Lauragh, then over the Healy Pass to Adrigole. Here we turn left for Glengarriff and onwards to Ballylickey. Turn left at Ballylickey for Kealkill and on to the Pass of Ceim an Fiach. Shortly after Ballingeary is the drag up to Reenaree. Here the race will take a left turn and via some twisting narrow roads to Ballyvourney/Ballymakeera. We then head over the County Bounds into Kerry to Poulgorm Bridge. Turn left here for Kilgarvan and continuing to the finish at Kenmare. With six categorised climbs including the Cat 1 Healy Pass there is nothing easy about this stage. Total stage distance is approximately 144km

Follow the link to see the route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/fullscreen/308912593/

Stage 3: This is the annual return visit to the classic series of loops in South Kerry once described by Philip Cassidy as “the finest road racing stage in Ireland”. The stage starts and finishes in Waterville with racing underway at 11:15am. There are some changes to the stage over the previous versions of it. From the start the route heads towards Cahresiveen for 10km before turning left for Ballinskelligs. It is then on to The Glen and the first KoH of the day at Kilurley At Anagar Bridge the race turns right and carries on through Cahersiveen and passes Mick Murphy’s home to Raheens Cross. From here a right turn descends to Dromid and then on towards Waterville. At the New Chapel Cross turn right and head towards Cahersiveen again. At approx. 70km turn left again at the same junction where the route turned left on the first run through. After about 5km turn right on to a narrow road and climb to the top of the hill at Sussa. Turn right and continue to Anagar Bridge. This time turn left and go into Portmagee. At the top of the pier, turn left, and continue over Coom an Easpaigh. At the bottom of the descent at The Glen turn right for Ballinskelligs. Continue to Aughatubrid and join the N70. Turn right and continue to Waterville and the finish. Almost half of this route runs within a mile of the sea so wind and weather conditions play a big role in determining the difficulty of this stage. Total stage length is approximately 135km.

Follow the link to see the route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/fullscreen/954096933/

Stage 4: The final day calls for a flat stage – the Killorglin, Beaufort, Killorglin loop. This stage uses this loop three times before moving to the smaller town circuit for nine laps. The laps of the finishing circuit make up about one third of the total stage length. The finishing circuit makes for a very spectator-friendly piece of racing and always attracts a big crowd to Killorglin. While the climb up the hill in Killorglin is categorised on each occasion except the last, it is unlikely to have a serious affect on the mountains jersey given that the two previous days are much more likely to decide who will wear that jersey at the finish. The total stage length is approximately 117km.

Follow the link to see the Killorglin, Beaufort, Killorglin loop: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/fullscreen/343428491/

Follow the link to see the Killorglin, town circuit loop: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/fullscreen/343429223/

Teams. There will be changes to the Team structure for 2016. Teams will consist of 5 riders. Priority for engagement to the start list will be given to teams with the highest number of A1 riders. Teams may not contain more than two A3 riders.

A maximum of 40 teams will make up the field. There will be places reserved for 9 invited teams and places available for a maximum 31 teams after that. Entry will open on 21st Feb 2016 and close on 6th March, or earlier if the entry list is full. The full list of competitors and teams will be published on March 9th. Rider changes to the entry list will not be permitted after 12 noon on March 21st, the Monday prior to the race start.