Max Stedman finished ninth as the general classification sparring began in the Rás Tailteann on Wednesday.
And Louis Rose-Davies was only a couple of bike lengths behind his Canyon Eisberg team-mate in 11th at the finish of stage four in Glengarriff.
In impressive performances, the pair had successfully negotiated the seven categorised climbs on the 153km dash from Listowel.
Jason van Dalen, of Delta Cycling, clinched victory as just 26 riders arrived at the finish in a select front group.
That depleted bunch included Cyrille Thiery, who retained his yellow jersey, and points classification leader Luuc Bugter.
A chase group of 16, featuring Dexter Gardias, lost 1min 58sec, while Rory Townsend and Matt Nowell finished in a bunch at 4.19.
Nowell’s effort was hampered by a crash at the foot of the category one Healy Pass – the Northwich talent suffering blows to his arm and hip.
Rose-Davies and Stedman are now 12th and 19th respectively in the general classification, 35 seconds adrift of Swiss talent Thiery.
The pair are also second and seventh in the youth classification, while Stedman is fifth in the race for the KOM jersey.
It took around 60km of racing before a group managed to escape the clutches of the peloton on day four of the UCI 2.2 stage race.
Mountains classification leader Lukas Ruegg, of the Swiss national squad, had already scooped maximum points on the category three Crinny climb, with Nowell rolling over fourth.
And Jake Alderman, of Saint Piran, had clipped off to win the category three Farranfore from Ruegg, who continued to strengthen his grasp on the jersey.
However, on the exit of Killarney, Jelly Belly’s Ulises Castillo attacked and dragged Sean Hahessy, of Westmeath Viner-Caremark, with him.
They were soon joined by Cork Strata 3’s Simon Ryan and Kerry Killarney rider Conor Kissane and quickly opened up a gap of more than two minutes.
Kissane took the points on the category two ascents of Ladies View and Molls Gap before the Swiss national team cranked up the chase.
They swiftly reduced the deficit to under a minute with 50km of the stage remaining.
And while Kissane completed a hat-trick of KOMs on the category two Garranes climb, the leaders led by just 30 seconds on the run to Healy Pass.
The race then lit up on the category one test, with the escape group reeled in and Taylor Shelden, of Jelly Belly, briefly hitting out alone.
Nowell was caught up in a crash at the foot of the climb, injuring his arm and hip as he continued an eventful debut at the race.
Meanwhile, Shelden did enough to take maximum points at the summit, with Stedman following Ruegg over for third place.
One climb now stood between the depleted bunch and the finish line in Glengarriff. And Ruegg hammered home his advantage in the mountains classification with maximum points on the category three Cooleraigh ascent.
Once over the top there was little more than 7km to the finish where just 26 riders remained to fight for glory.
Van Dalen produced an impressive sprint to take victory from Matteo Cigala, of the Westmeath outfit, and Belgian Robbe Ghys.
But Stedman and Rose-Davies looked strong as they crossed the line in ninth and 11th to keep pace with their general classification rivals.
Gardias, who had become detached, arrived with the next group while Nowell nursed himself home alongside Townsend.
Stage five will take the riders from Glengarriff to Mitchelstown on Thursday (11am). The route features three categorised climbs but a larger group will be expected to sprint for glory.