Motorpoint Directeur Sportif Chris Truett praised his riders after a tough second stage of this year’s Rás.
An Post’s Gediminas Bagdonas took the victory into Kilrush this afternoon, beating Shane Archbold (New Zealand) and Stuart Shaw (Drapac Procycling) at the end of a lively day’s racing.
The combination of strong winds and an undulating 164km course resulted in an ever-changing stage, with groups breaking clear throughout.
Although Tobyn Horton was the team’s highest finisher, coming second in the bunch sprint for the minor placings, Truett declared himself pleased with his team’s display.
“The lads were outstanding today,” he told Cycling Weekly. “They were getting into the breaks, they were splitting the field and we always had guys up there.
“I’m just gutted that we didn’t get what we deserved from the stage,” Truett added.
With the front group crossing the line some two minutes before the remnants of the peloton, Archbold takes over the lead of the race from Rapha-Condor-Sharp’s Dean Downing.
Yet despite a healthy leading margin over his rivals, Truett does not believe Archbold has won the race already.
“The guy’s an absolute powerhouse, but we’re only two days into the race.
“I’ve spoken to the lads and they’re not disheartened at all. They know we’re one of the strongest teams here, and they’ve done everything I’ve asked of them so far.”
The Motorpoint team joking around during the recent Tour DoonHame
Pete Williams is leading the team, and Truett remains hopeful that he can take at least a stage in the week-long event.
“He rode perfectly today, and to be honest he’s probably riding better than I’ve seen him do for a long while,” he said.
“A stage win is his main goal here, but we’ll see what happens in the remaining days.”
Truett also hopes that Marcin Bialoblocki, who has been suffering with a bad back, can ride into form throughout the week.
The Rás continues tomorrow with a 175km stage from Kilrush to Castleisland, with four climbs – including the first-category Crag Cave – all coming within the final 50km.