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Rhino Velo takes on first race of the season in Ireland
28 Mar 2018
by Rebecca Dutton

Liam Holohan models the Rhino Velo Race Team’s new kit with his new bike, supplied by Dave Mellor Cycles of Shrewsbury.

A Shropshire cycling team will be riding in style over the Easter weekend when they head to the Ireland for their first big race of the season.
Members of the Rhino Velo Race Team, run by Chris Pook of Estate Agents Cooper Green Pooks and Ben Lawrence of Beaumont Lawrence Chartered Insurance Brokers, will be heading to Ireland to take part in the Ras Mumhan, a four day stage race in the ‘Ring of Kerry’ over the Easter weekend.
And the team will be sporting their brand new kit, supplied again by Italian clothing company, Sportful. The kit is sponsored by Beaumont Lawrence, Cooper Green Pooks, Rhino Velo Pyrenees and Holohan Coaching.
The Ras Mumhan team will consist of former professional rider and now coach Liam Holohan, 30, from Shrewsbury, Matthew Garthwaite, 32, from Newport, Ollie Hayward, 21 from Ludlow, Kirk Vickers, 24 from Whitchurch, and Chris Pook, 35, from Shrewsbury.
The Ras Mumhan is an intense race consisting of 180 riders in five man teams. Stage one will start on Good Friday in Killorglin Co. Kerry.
Saturday’s stage 2 will begin in Listowel and finish in Athea. Sunday takes in a 100 mile loop around Waterville, including a climb on Valentia Island and the final stage will take place on Monday in Killorglin.
“It will be a hugely competitive event but we are ready for it,” said Mr Pook. “Last year Matthew Garthwaite rode superbly to place fifth overall and he also picked up most combative rider on more than one occasion. Rhino Velo placed fifth in the overall team classification which shows the depth of talent we have at our disposal.”
“The team has just come back from a training week in the Pyrenees, France, where we focused on specific training techniques, involving race drills and targeting specific adaptations for races we have coming up.
“Racing will be fast and furious and we are really aiming to take a podium spot overall and push for the win on each stage.”
Mr Lawrence said the Ras Mumhan is one of Ireland’s premier elite amateur cycling events and the cyclists will be able to see some of the most stunning countryside in Kerry.
He said: “It’s also some of the most demanding terrain but for the team, it’s all about taking on challenges. This year, Rhino Velo is aiming to improve on their already excellent performance in 2017 and go for the win.”
“Our team for the Ras Mumhan is strong to a man and with Matthew Garthwaite and Liam Holohan, they have two riders who can contest the overall classification and in Chris Pook, Kirk Vickers and Ollie Hayward, there are three riders who are all capable of a top stage result”
Rhino Velo is sponsored in 2018 by Cooper Green Pooks, Doppio Protection, Beaumont Lawrence, Holohan Coaching and Rhino Velo Pyrenees.