Makayla MacPherson sprinted home on The Parade in front of Kilkenny Castle to win the stage five city circuit race on Saturday evening as Anna Shackley of Team GB maintained the lead she had gained during the afternoon's stage four time trial in Tullaroan.

MacPherson's dominant sprint performance carried her several bike lengths clear of the rest of a 48-rider group which contested the penultimate stage of the race on a 2km circuit starting at the Marble City's most iconic landmark.

The 18-year-old from Corona, California emulated the stage one success of her team-mate Kaia Schmid as she led through the final corner at the end of a high octane hour of racing to power up the final 100m gentle rise to the line.

Paulien Koster of the Jan Van Arckel squad in the Netherlands finished second with Lena Mettraux third. Kaia Schmid was a significant fourth which helped her to take over the lead of the Sport Ireland Points Classification while Lisanne Immerzeel (Team Noord Holland) was fifth ahead of the Team Ireland duo, Alice Sharpe and Mia Griffin.

Shackley's eighth place finish ensured that she retains her five-second lead over Abi Smith as well as the lead in the Women's Cycling Ireland Young Rider classification to go with the lead in the Wicklow 200 Queen of the Mountains competitions.

The final 88km stage will see the riders starting at Springhill Court Hotel and winding their way back to Kilkenny Castle with the challenging climb of Woodstock near Inistioge along the way after which the winner of Rás na mBan 2021 will be decided.