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John Mangan – Part One, Starting Out in France; “the Mafia didn’t have much choice but to let me in”

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Mangan steals show’ or ‘Ras title for Mangan’ nice enough headlines but there’s just something about French that rings that little bit better, ‘John Mangan en solitaire,’ or ‘Mangan brillant vainquer a Cagnes.’

But not just Cagnes – Fougeres, Cancale, Landihen, La Gouesniere, Loudeas, Trebry, Evry, Saint-Ouen-la-Rouerie, Ploemeur, Montauban, Rennes … I could go on.

John Mangan won 156 continental races not to mention a raft of races in his native Ireland before he headed for France and huge success.

Such was his strength both on and of the bike that for a deca