Mote Park cyclist Daire Feeley will be back in the saddle with new Irish team, EvoPro Racing, for the 2019 season. The 22-year-old had spent the last couple of years with UC Monaco and will be based in Girona, Spain from the end of this month under EvoPro sports directors, Morgan Fox and Matteo Cigala, and general manager and former Cycling Ireland President, PJ Nolan.
Daire spoke to People Sport earlier this week ahead of his EvoPro debut at the Mallorca Challenge on January 30th.
“For the last couple of years at UC Monaco I’ve basically been a semi-professional. I raced my bike full-time so basically it’s been my job. Now I’ve signed a tier three professional contract with EvoPro. The three tiers are: continental, pro continental, and then world tour teams like Team Sky,” he said.
EvoPro is Irish-owned and Irish sponsored but will feature international cyclists as well as backing from the continent. Daire believes this a fantastic opportunity to continue his development among teammates such as Italian, Eugenio Alafaci, and Albanian Eugert Zhupa, who both have a wealth of experience including several Giro d’Italia appearances between them.
“It’s a serious calendar – one of the best I could have asked for at this level. The team’s plan is to step up to that second tier in the years to come. We start at the end of the month with four days of racing in Mallorca, and there we will be racing against the likes of Team Sky. That’s where it all kicks off and then we’ll be competing right up to the end of October so it’s going to be a busy year.
“At the end of the day, this is a positive move. You’re one step closer to where you want to be and it’s another year of experience. It’s experience on the bike and the experience of living away from home and racing all around the world – that’s something you don’t get in university.
“To be able to say ‘look there’s the stamps in the passport’: the likes of Japan, the States, and this year we are going to be all over the world in places like China and Taiwan”.