The An Post Chain Reaction Sean Kelly team have today announced a new signing for the 2016 season. Damien Shaw will don the green of An Post Chain Reaction next year after signing a one-year deal following a very impressive 2015 campaign.
Westmeath native, Shaw, had an outstanding year with Team ASEA taking home the 2015 National Road Cycling Championships and claiming three second place finishes in this year’s An Post Rás. The sport recognised his performance during 2015 as Damien won the title of ‘Best Domestic Based Irish Rider’ at the Cycling Ireland national awards. The Mullingar fireman has been racing part-time up until now and spoke of his delight at securing a full-time move to the Irish outfit.
“I first started out racing as a hobby and a means to stay fit and never thought it would lead to this. After putting in a few consistent rides and achieving some good results this year, I’m over the moon to have the opportunity to concentrate on racing full time. I know it will be difficult but I think under Kurt’s (Bogaerts) guidance, I can step-up and improve even further.”
It is an exciting move for the An Post Chain Reaction team and manager, Kurt Bogaerts, believes Shaw will thrive in a full time environment.
“We had been keeping a close eye on Damien’s results throughout the year and we could see huge potential in him. I think by giving him the freedom to be in the saddle full time he will make huge strides, I have no doubt of that. He’s got a great mentality and a real hunger to succeed. It’s an exciting time for both An Post Chain Reaction and for him.”
The signing of Shaw brings the count of the An Post contingent up to a total of fourteen so far, eleven of which are new recruits. Bogaerts is the aware of the challenges that this period of transition can bring but is optimistic about the road ahead.
“Obviously, we have seen a quite a lot of wholesale changes in the camp this year and it won’t be without its challenges. But what we have in the new crop is a group who are highly motivated and hungry for success. They’ll be ready to put the shoulder to the wheel and put in some hard work and that’s all I can ask. I’m sure that this group will continue to be competitive and achieve some great results next year. We’re looking forward to next season already.”