The 2020 Rás will be promoted and run next year by a newly-formed promotions group Cáirde Rás Tailteann, with the ongoing support of the historical organising club, Cumann Rás Tailteann.
Following a long and committed search for sponsorship for Rás Tailteann in 2019, covered on Sport for Business here, the race ultimately fell victim to insufficient financial support and had to be abandoned.
Today the historical organisers confirmed that they will not themselves run an event in 2020, but are delighted to see the race go ahead under new organisers, with Cumann Rás Tailteann’s and the Dignam family’s full support.
Cáirde Rás Tailteann will continue to follow the historical identity of the Rás Tailteann in the ethos of County and International teams.
The bringing back to life of the event is to be applauded though there has to remain some concern that the new group is based on volunteers and passion rather than any fresh financial backing or commercial partnerships.
The 2020 edition of the Rás is likely to be over fewer days, possibly five, but the new organisers have committed to try and promote this unique Irish race back to its UCI status in the coming years.
“We are thrilled to see this legendary race continue,” said Eimear Dignam. “It has a special place in the hearts of not only the cycling community in Ireland but also in the hearts of those who’ve competed in it from around the world.”
“We know the new organisers extremely well, having worked with them on the race for many years, and we’re delighted to have them take up the mantle.”
“On behalf of the promotions group and entire cycling community in Ireland, we would like to thank Cumann Rás Tailteann and the Dignam family for entrusting us with the organisation of this great race going forward,” said Ger Campbell of the group.
“We are honoured and excited about putting this race back on the calendar from 2020 and look forward to seeing all the old faces, and undoubtedly some new ones becoming Men of the Rás.”
Rás na mBan for women cyclists did take place in 2019 for its 14th year and was a success with some sponsorship from Europcar and TV highlights broadcast on Eurosport.
If the Men’s version can attract interest from the commercial sector and the media, then it will be a welcome addition to the sporting summer.
It is anticipated that more details of the new race will emerge in the coming weeks.
Image credits, Inpho.ie