Rás Tailteann

  (Redirected from An Post Ras)

Rás Tailteann (pronounced [ˈɾˠaːsˠ ˈt̪ˠalʲtʲənˠ], "Tailteann Race"), known for sponsorship reasons as the An Post Rás or the Rás for short, was an annual 8-day international cycling stage race, held in Ireland in May. Around Ireland, the race is referred to as The Rás. By naming the race Rás Tailteann the original organisers, members of the National Cycling Association (NCA), were associating the cycle race with the Tailteann Games, a Gaelic festival in early medieval Ireland.

Rás Tailteann
Rás Tailteann logo.jpg
Race details
Datelate May
Nickname(s)The Rás
CompetitionUCI Europe Tour 2.2
TypeStage race
OrganiserCumann Rás Tailteann
Race directorEimear Dignam
Web sitewww.anpostras.ie Edit this at Wikidata
First edition1953 (1953)
Editions66 (as of 2018)
First winner Colm Christle (IRL)
Most wins Sé O Hanlon (IRL) (4 wins)
Most recent Luuc Bugter (NED)
Zbigniew Głowaty, pictured after winning the 1963 Rás

The event was founded by Joe Christle in 1953[1] and was organised under the rules of the National Cycling Association (NCA). At that time competitive cycling in Ireland was deeply divided between three cycling organisations, the NCA, Cumann Rothaiochta na hÉireann (CRÉ) and the Northern Ireland Cycling Federation (NICF). The Rás Tailteann was the biggest race that the NCA organised each year.

As a result of a Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) motion, the NCA was banned from international races and all teams affiliated with the UCI were banned from competing in races organised by the NCA. Therefore, only teams that were not affiliated with the UCI or who were willing to take the chance of serving a suspension for competing in the Rás Tailteann competed in the Rás Tailteann. During this time the NCA cyclists achieved prominence in the Rás with Gene Mangan, Sé O'Hanlon and Paddy Flanagan being several legends of the race. Mangan won only one Rás but featured in the race throughout the 1960s and early-1970s winning a total of 12 stages while O'Hanlon won the race four times and won 24 stages. Flanagan won the Rás three times and had 11 stage wins.

The NCA and the CRÉ together with NICF began unification talks in the late 1960s and early 1970s. As a result, a CRÉ team which included Pat McQuaid, Kieron McQuaid Peter Morton and Peter Doyle was able to enter the race in 1974. Doyle won the race and the McQuaids won two stages each. The first Rás open to the two associations CRÉ and the NICF was in 1979 and enabled Stephen Roche to compete the event as part of the Ireland team. Roche won the event.

The race developed into a much sought after event by professional and amateur teams from many parts of the world. As part of the elite international calendar it was eligible to award qualifying points that are required for participation in Olympic Games and the UCI Road World Championships.

The first edition was held in 1953 as a two-day event but quickly developed into a week-long event. It ran every year, uninterrupted, until 2018. Following Cumann Rás Tailteann's failure to find a new principal sponsor for the race, it was announced in February 2019 that there would be no Rás that year.[2]

The race was a UCI 2.2 event.


The official name of the race has been changed many times over the years, usually named after sponsors. An Post were the last title sponsors,[3] although this sponsorship ended after the 2017 event.

Race namesEdit

  • 1953 to 1967: Rás Tailteann
  • 1968 to 1972: You Are Better Off Saving Rás Tailteann
  • 1973: Tayto Rás Tailteann
  • 1974 to 1976: Discover Ireland Rás Tailteann
  • 1977 to 1980: The Health Race Rás Tailteann
  • 1981 to 1982: Tirolia Rás Tailteann
  • 1983: Dairy Rás Tailteann
  • 1984 to 2004: FBD Milk Rás
  • 2005 to 2010: FBD Insurance Rás
  • 2011 to 2017: An Post Rás
  • 2018: Rás Tailteann

Past winnersEdit

No. Year GC Winner Nationality Team Points class KOM U23
1 1953 Colm Christle   Ireland James' Gate C.C.
2 1954 Joe O'Brien   Ireland National C.C.
3 1955 Gene Mangan   Ireland Kerry
4 1956 Paudie Fitzgerald   Ireland Kerry
5 1957 Frank Ward   Ireland Dublin
6 1958 Mick Murphy   Ireland Kerry
7 1959 Ben McKenna   Ireland Meath
8 1960 Paddy Flanagan   Ireland Kildare
9 1961[4] Tom Finn   Ireland Dublin Team Seán Dillon  
10 1962 Sé O'Hanlon   Ireland Dublin
11 1963 Zbigniew Głowaty   Poland Poland
12 1964 Paddy Flanagan (2)   Ireland Kildare
13 1965 Sé O'Hanlon (2)   Ireland Dublin
14 1966 Sé O'Hanlon (3)   Ireland Dublin
15 1967 Sé O'Hanlon (4)   Ireland Dublin
16 1968 Milan Hrazdíra   Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia
17 1969 Brian Connaughton   Ireland Meath
18 1970 Aleksandr Gusyatnikov   Soviet Union U.S.S.R.
19 1971 Colm Nulty   Ireland Meath
20 1972 John Mangan   Ireland Kerry
21 1973 Mike O'Donaghue   Ireland Carlow
22 1974 Peter Doyle   Ireland I.C.F.
23 1975 Paddy Flanagan (3)   Ireland Kildare
24 1976 Fons Steuten   Netherlands Netherlands
25 1977 Yuri Lavrushkin   Soviet Union U.S.S.R.
26 1978 Séamus Kennedy   Ireland Kerry
27 1979 Stephen Roche   Ireland Ireland
28 1980 Billy Kerr   Ireland Ireland
29 1981 Jamie McGahan   United Kingdom Scotland
30 1982 Dermot Gilleran   Ireland Ireland
31 1983 Philip Cassidy   Ireland Ireland
32 1984 Stephen Delaney   Ireland Dublin
33 1985 Nikolay Kosyakov   Soviet Union
34 1986 Stephen Spratt   Ireland Ireland
35 1987 Paul McCormack   Ireland Longford
36 1988 Paul McCormack (2)   Ireland Ireland
37 1989 Dainis Ozols   Soviet Union
38 1990 Ian Chivers   Ireland Ireland
39 1991 Kevin Kimmage   Ireland Meath
40 1992 Stephen Spratt (2)   Ireland Dublin
41 1993 Éamonn Byrne   Ireland Dublin Wheelers
42 1994 Declan Lonergan   Ireland Ireland
43 1995 Paul McQuaid   Ireland Ireland
44 1996 Tommy Evans   Ireland Armagh
45 1997 Andrew Roche   Isle of Man Kerry
46 1998 Ciarán Power   Ireland Team Ireland
47 1999 Philip Cassidy (2)   Ireland Team Ireland
48 2000 Julian Winn   United Kingdom Wales team David McCann   David McCann  
49 2001 Paul Manning   United Kingdom Great Britain team David Kopp  Nicholas White  
50 2002 Ciarán Power (2)   Ireland Team Ireland-Stena Line Chris Newton   Julian Winn  
51 2003 Chris Newton   United Kingdom Great Britain team Jonas Holmkvist   Maxim Iglinskiy  
52 2004 David McCann   Ireland Ireland-Thornton's Recycling Team Malcolm Elliott   Tobias Lergard  
53 2005 Chris Newton (2)   United Kingdom Recycling.co.uk Malcolm Elliott   Mark Lovatt  
54 2006 Kristian House   United Kingdom Recycling.co.uk Morten Hegreberg   Ciarán Power  
55 2007 Tony Martin   Germany Thüringer Energie Team Dominique Rollin   Ricardo Van der Velde  
56 2008 Stephen Gallagher   Ireland An Post–Sean Kelly Dean Downing   Kit Gilham  
57 2009[5] Simon Richardson   United Kingdom Rapha Condor recycling.co.uk Niko Eeckhout   David O'Loughlin   Mark McNally  
58 2010 Alexander Wetterhall   Sweden Team Sprocket Pro John Degenkolb   Mark Cassidy   Connor McConvey  
59 2011 Gediminas Bagdonas   Lithuania An Post-Sean Kelly Shane Archbold   Oleksandr Sheydyk   Aaron Gate  
60 2012 Nicolas Baldo   France Atlas Personal-Jakroo Gediminas Bagdonas   David Clarke   Richard Handley  
61 2013 Marcin Białobłocki   Poland Team UK Youth Owain Doull   Martin Hunal   Simon Yates  
62 2014 Clemens Fankhauser   Austria Tirol Cycling Team Patrick Bevin   Markus Eibegger   Alex Peters  
63 2015 Lukas Pöstlberger[6]   Austria Tirol Cycling Team Aaron Gate   Aidis Kruopis   Ryan Mullen  
64 2016 Clemens Fankhauser (2)   Austria Tirol Cycling Team Aaron Gate   Nikodemus Holler   Jai Hindley  
65 2017 James Gullen   United Kingdom JLT–Condor Daan Meijers   Przemysław Kasperkiewicz   Michael O'Loughlin  
66 2018 Luuc Bugter   Netherlands Delta Cycling Rotterdam Luuc Bugter   Lukas Ruegg   Robbe Ghys  


  • Daly, Tom (2003). The Rás – The Story of Ireland's Unique Bike Race. The Collins Press. ISBN 1-903464-37-4.
  • Daly, Tom (2012). The Rás – The Story of Ireland's Unique Bike Race – paperback edition. The Collins Press. ISBN 978-1-84889-148-7.
  • Traynor, Jim. The Rás – A Day by Day Diary of Ireland's Great Bike Race. The Collins Press. ISBN 978-1-905451-71-5.
  • Riordan, Christy (2009). A Special tribute to Mick Murphy: Winner of 1958 Rás Tailteann. C.R. DVD & Video production.


  1. ^ http://www.independent.ie/sport/death-of-former-cycling-supremo-joe-christle-447034.html/news/art_4467.shtml "Death of former cycling supremo Joe Christle" Publisher: Irish Independent.com Accessed date: 30 May 2009
  2. ^ www.cyclingnews.com http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/no-uci-ranked-ras-tailteann-to-take-place-in-2019/. Retrieved 3 June 2019. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1 October 2010. Retrieved 27 September 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) "An Post Takes Over Title Sponsorship of Rás" Publisher: Irish Cycling.com Accessed date: 27 September 2010
  4. ^ "1961 Rás Tailteann results". fbdinsurances.com. Retrieved 28 June 2009.
  5. ^ "2009 FBD Insurance Rás results". irishcycling.com. Archived from the original on 27 May 2009. Retrieved 24 May 2009.
  6. ^ "Lukas Postlberger finally strikesit lucky in Ras". Irish Examiner.

External linksEdit