Local cyclist out of pocket after Ryanair gaffe

Mark Downey shows off some replacement equipment, supplied by local sponsors Powerhouse Sport.
Mark Downey shows off some replacement equipment, supplied by local sponsors Powerhouse Sport.

A Dromore cyclist could be left out of pocket after a Ryanair gaffe saw his suitcase disappear.

Mark Downey, an Irish international, was flying to Spain for a training camp with the national side but found himself a lot lighter on the other side.

On boarding the Ryanair flight in Dublin airport, Mark was told that there was no space left in the overhead lockers and his case, containing about €1,000 worth of gear, would have to go into the hold.

That wasn’t a problem but what was an issue, was the fact that it never appeared on the carousel in Barcelona.

“I had my Specialized Evade helmet in the bag, four sets of Oakley sunglass, a Garmin, Sidi shoes and a set of Beats speakers,” said Downey.

“When we got to Barcelona, my friend Marc’s bag arrived but there was no sign of mine. We had to get our connecting flight 30 minutes later so I had no time to fill out a claims form.”

However, rather than abandon his bag in Barcelona, Mark forked out another £100 on return flights to continue his search.

“I had flown into Barcelona on the Tuesday and on to Palma. I then spent Wednesday on the phone to numerous people but there was no luck so I decided to fly back to Barcelona on Thursday,” he said.

“I was hoping it would be either at the Ryanair desk or lost and found, but not a thing.

“It’s very frustrating; it wasn’t my fault. Yet nobody seems to be willing to do anything.

“My bag’s not in Barcelona airport, that’s for sure.”

Now Mark is left hoping that insurance will cover the loss of his gear, although even that, he says, may only stretch to half of its worth.

The only piece of solace comes as a perk of being an international star as Powerhouse Sport sent Downey some replacement gear.

Despite Mark’s claims, when contacted by the Leader, Ryanair said: “We have not received any correspondence from this customer in relation to this issue, however, our customer service team are currently looking into it.”