Friday, 4 December 2015

Crossing the Off Season

It's the off season. Oh no it isn't. Oh yes it is.

The team has generally sat this Cyclo Cross thing out. As one rider was heard to remark - you tend to spend more time washing your bike than riding it when you do 'cross.
Happy isn't he? thanks Matt O' Connor

We are more concerned as a group at the lack of opportunities to sit in. There is no bunch. There's usually a lot of mud. And it's not very fast. You should probably have a break after a season of racing. You might pick up something from the mud etc that goes flying.Then, when you've finished, covered in the proverbial, how can you realistically jump in the car and drive home? Oh yes, just get changed in the winter open air of course.

Paul wins at the Zappi's round in November

Despite all this, Cross seems to be on a massive growth spurt. The Central Cross League is being hotly contested at all levels from youth newcomers on 16 inch wheels to Elite Roadies looking to maintain a bit of fitness through the 'off' season.

No doubt one of the key advantages is that it's safer for all ages and abilities with no public roads involved, softer landings and slower speeds generally.
Paul has thrown himself into this rather strange disc-braked world of slippy slidey lawn cycling and seems to be enjoying it. The fact that he has won a couple of rounds and podiumed pretty much every week has probably helped.

At the time of writing, he's top of the Central Cross League rankings for his age group. 2 wins, a second and 2 thirds. Blinding. If the wrong stuff hits you in the eye, literally.

Paul - you're bonkers. Now onwards to the Winter Series*

Monday, 28 September 2015

Baynesy Blasts to a win!

Three in the top ten for Team Prize at new event


Brrrr, a bit parky yesterday morning; especially with the customary low-lying mist in the Vale of Aylesbury. We really aren't particularly accustomed to the traditional Time Trial start times.

But wait - lifting the mood; turning up the heat; firing up the afterburners; Berko CC took the plunge and organised their first ever formal race.

Long Sleeve Skinsuit needed

Top Man on the day, trying not to drop it - Ian Baynes

A standard 10 mile Time Trial distance over a sporting circuit through Mentmore, Wing and Cheddington, it was so close to home it would have been rude not to. And they managed to host the HQ at the Three Horseshoes Pub which made for some highly appreciated Bacon Rolls. Then they had some high velocity music on the startline - highly innovative. Ian reckons he was pushed off in The Ramones. Is that what they call it nowadays?

Ian's request for the National Anthem left organiser Nick a little uncertain

On to the race, oh yes it was a TT so no-one attacked or sat in, but it was Dave Hope [Karpet]'s first race for us. Making the transition [so to speak] from another unmentionable discipline, he wasn't too shabby for 8th. The Jason Baran-Knight dusted down his Low Pro and snook into the top 5, but [drum roll] Ian Baynes panted his way round for the win. "It was hard," he said afterwards. 

fastest team. This could be the beginning of a beautiful...

Well he didn't but it probably felt that way. It was smiles all round at the coffee bar afterwards until he realised (a) that it looks a bit odd cycling to a cafe with a disc wheel on a TT bike and (b) that he should really shell out for team Cappucinos.

So big thanks and well done to Nick Clarke and Berko for adding another local race to the calendar, and for laying on the extras. Here's to next year...

Monday, 21 September 2015

The Baran Knight moves up

New Boy comes good for another Crit special

his training's paying off y'know
Jason Baran was flying in June. His win at the Bowl made us think the roll was just beginning. Then he went on holiday. So a few more nondescript frustrating races followed which weren't worth reporting on, no offence and all.

Now about this time of year, a certain end of season je ne sais quoi seems to hang in the air. Something along the lines of Ooooh it's nearly over, I'll maybe have that extra bottle of wine, ice cream etc [no names, no pack drill]. Not so Jason. Or Ian, who both rocked up for the BIG events Crit at Hillingdon on Saturday.

They had a plan, and they stuck to it by all accounts. Something of a first there then. Baynesy reckoned it was the hardest 5 minutes he's done all year [according to his scientific instruments].

So after batting away with one of them off the front at most points in the race, Jason clipped off the front with 5 laps to go. Joined by one other, it was eyeballs out to the finish and he took 2nd place. Good work! More specifically, congratulations on moving up to 3rd cat. We knew he'd do it, honest.

No slacking on Ian's part either, who rolled over the line with a bit of traffic in 10th. Life in the old dog yet...

Monday, 27 July 2015

Double Win in the Millennium Trophy

winner - Luke
After keeping things quite hushed last year until Christmas, it's already official that our team has some serious success in the 'season-long' North London Millennium Trophy for 2015.

Devised by Doug Eagger of the Icknield CC, the trophy is based on points for placings in eight sporting course time trials.

Luke has beaten Richard Wood of Arbis Colbert RT to the scratch win and thanks to some great supporting rides from Steve Clarke, Paul Caton and a resurgent Darren Powell, we have, for the first time, clinched the team award. Top work!

Full details are posted here

Monday, 20 July 2015

Win for Neil at Newbury

The 10 o'clock at Newbury. Sort of. Neil & Paul turned up on Sunday morning for the Newbury Road Club's LVRC Road Race. Neil, typically unprepared, had no idea that the course had a hill in it, but, as he said, "you can waste a lot of time preparing for things that don't happen." er, yes
early break: Simon Brooks, Neil, Martin Jones, Rowan Horner

Neil's AB race was off with a bang and he got straight into the early move which became the mid race break and then failed to be the break that stuck when it was caught after nearly 4 laps. He'd been working hard too: "Simon Brooks and Rowan Horner from St Raphael were working really hard to tow us along and all 4 of us were really pushing but Simon was clearly stronger than the rest of us." Eventually, the main group got working and caught the breakaway, but Brooks had already taken flight. Neil was left to lick his wounds and try to recover.

"I'd been working at my limit really for 4 laps so I was struggling to see what I could do next," he recalls. After almost a lap back in the bunch though, he followed a move by Vince Divine of Finchley up the climb and opened a gap on the bunch of about 10 seconds. Joined by Gianluca Capello of GS Vecchi, the trio got their heads down and headed full tilt for the line. Neil was beaten by Capello and Divine in the sprint but he wasn't downhearted. "I fought hard for that and after 4 laps in the break, I thought that wasn't bad!" he said afterwards.

Paul hangs tough in the winning break
Meanwhile, in the CD race, Paul made sure he was in the main move of the day, but he too was finding it tough. "It was a tough course with the climb in particular causing difficulties in the peloton. In fact it was at the base of the climb," he says. 

a successful outing for a happy duo
With just over two laps to go that the final selection was made with an eight man group of the strongest riders forming over the crest.

The group worked well but with three VC Vecchi team riders there were plenty of attacks and counter attacks as they each tried for a solo victory. "We were pretty wise to this," continues Paul "so they didn't succeed which left it all lined up for an eight man sprint for the win. Unfortunately I let myself get boxed in a bit so only got 3rd. Still not a bad result and starts to cement my 3rd place in the series but I have eyes set on 2nd."

Sunday, 19 July 2015

PBs for Ross and Luke in a very old Race

Ross motors to a PB and beats Luke.
The Cronomen headed over to Essex yesterday for the Shaftesbury 50. 

One of the oldest races on the calendar - it was first run in 1906, it always attracts some of the strongest riders. 

It's on the E2 course too - a fast route with plenty of takers so they were up against some top names.

A  stiff wind was not too much of a hindrance and Ross and Luke both got inside the top 10 whilst Tony and Steve got 'comfortably' under the 2 hour mark.

Most impressive though were Luke and Ross' times of 1:44:24 and 1:44:07 respectively - two personal bests!

Full result in PDF is posted here

Monday, 13 July 2015

Robert Smail Wins the 2015 TMG Horizon Trophy

A little bit of Belgium came to the 5th TMG Horizon Road Race yesterday on the Cublington Circuit near Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire. Local riders put up a great fight but Robert Smail of Belgium - based Tomacc CC showed his superiority with a surge of power on the last lap.
very active early on - Stephen Orbie

Stephen Orbie of VI Technics was straight into the action, making an early move with Mike Wragg of Arbis Colbert in the opening kilometres and as they crossed the line, a gap of 22 seconds looked to be growing. The front of the bunch was also splintering though, and by the Unicorn Prime on the 2nd lap, Wragg had been substituted by his team mate, Richard Wood with Peter Hitt of VC Meudon joining in to make a gap of 54 seconds.

The third time through Whitchurch and five more riders had joined the move but the gap was shrinking to 29 seconds and by the time they crossed the finish line with 5 to go it was only 22. After a particularly hard phase of racing, there remained only 15 seconds when the race had to briefly neutralised. 

Smail forcing, Roy Chamberlain chasing
With everything back together, hostilities resumed as Will Scott of Bonito Bikes went straight on the offensive on the 5th lap and pulled away to a gap of 40 seconds. It didn't take long for Stephen Orbie to wake up again though and with 2 laps to go, he took the Grand Tour Cookbook Prime leading a powerful looking group up the hill which had absorbed Scott and included two Corley Drops riders.

The gap to the bunch of 1 minute 35 seconds looked solid and held relatively steady on the 7th lap, falling only slightly to 1'20" at the bell. The pressure was on though now and on the last time up the headwind drag to Whitchurch, the break was shedding passengers as the bunch smelt blood and accelerated.

With 5km to go, Robert Smail of Tomacc CC attacked the remainder of the break. With most of the remainder being downhill this seemed a touch foolish but he built a gap of 30 seconds very quickly as the bunch went through Whitchurch, defying the logic that a group will descend faster then a loner.

His high pace continued whilst the remains of the break imploded leaving everyone to fend for themselves. By the finish, Smail had carved out a gap of over a minute to take the win in style. "He made it look easy,"observed one of the spectators.

Local pride was intact as Roy Chamberlain of Corley Drops RT proved the best of the rest, surviving the high paced break and managing a small gap before the bunch came in and the Spirit Bikes Team from only 5 miles away managed 2 riders in the Top Ten.

Winner, Robert Smail reflected "It was great to get the win today against some quality opposition. I really enjoyed the race; it was hard, fast and safe." Neil Wass, organiser said "It was a pleasure to put this race on - the riders put on a fantastic show. We know that guys like Robert go to Belgium to get hard races and maximise their opportunities. We started this race because we hope one day they won't need to!"

more pictures (thanks to Paul Burgoine) are here

Winner Robert Small Tomacc CC 12 163km 4hrs 3min 54seconds
2nd Roy Chamberlain Corley Drops RT @1’08”
3rd  Joe Harris Tomacc CC @1’10”
4th   Stephen Orbie VI Technics
5th   Jacob Hennessy Spirit Bikes
6th  Mike Smith Corley Drops RT
7th Gray Turnock Finsbury Park CC
8th  Jake Hales Spirit Racing
9th Tim Allen Corley Drops RT
10th Joel Natale Dulwich Paragon
11th David Hewett Adalta CC
12th Cameron Jeffers Bill Nickson Cycles
13th Oliver Jedrej Dulwich Paragon CC
14th Tom Bowering Ride 24/7 RT
15th Mike Cripps Army CU
16th Adam Capes Finchley RT
17th Toby Atkins Cambridge CC
18th Ashley Cox CC Luton
19th Andrew Critchlow Wyndymilla
20th Wouter Synbrandy Nuun Sigma Sport London
21st James Phillips Dream Cycling Team
22nd Tim Allen, Corley Drops RT
23rd Henry Farrell Endeavour RT
24th Graham Crow, Handsling RT
25th Richard Golding, Equipe Velo
26th Chris Snook Nuun Sigma Sport London
27th Stephen Nunn Finchley RT
28th Mike Wragg Arbis – Colbert Cycles RT
29th Lewis Stevens Strada Sport
30th Stuart Travis-Beames Spirit Bikes RT
31st Andrew Cartledge Peterborough CC
32nd Josh Lawless PMR @ Toachim House
33rd Malcolm Smith St Ives CC
34th Michael Guilford VC Meudon
35th Mark Yale VC Revolution
36th Jason Burrill Peterborough CC
37th Mark Baines Spirit Bikes
38th Peter Cole Handsling RT             
39th Richard Wood Arbis Colbert RT
40th Rob Fletcher Arbis Colbert RT
41st Tom Burnley Thames Velo
42nd Matt Exley Corley Drops RT
43rd Jamie Caldwell Rischardsons Trek
44th Peter Hitt VC Meudon
45th Ed Watkiss Corley Drops RT
46th Andy Betts Nuun Sigma Sport London

Unicorn Cublington Prime  - Stephen Orbie VI Technics
Grand Tour Cookbook Prime - Stephen Orbie VI Technics
The Hub Combativity Award - Will Scott, Bonito Squadra Corse
Powerhaus 3rd Category Winner - Andrew Critchlow Wyndymilla

thanks to our Race sponsors and supporters

Paul wins his own race!

clear win, but easily?
It was a busy weekend for TMG Horizon Cycling Team. Not only did we run our annual BC 160km Road Race on the Cublington Circuit but we also put on three races at Hog Hill as part of the LVRC Toachmin Vets race series. This race was run in conjunction with the Verulam CC who helped provide some of the helpers on the day.

Fortunately Hog Hill is an easy location to run a race so this allowed Paul Caton to also compete in Race 3. To keep things simple all races were run over 1 hour and 1 lap making them more of a criterium than an endurance event although with a steep hill each lap they were still testing races.

Race 1 was for the EFGH age categories with a reasonable turn out of around 30 riders and won by ex-International Rider Bob Downs of Rapha Condor in a solo breakaway.

digging in on the Hoggenberg
Race 2 for the AB category riders had around 40 riders take to the line and won again by an International track rider Anthony Wallis of Ciclos Uno again in a long solo breakaway.

Race 3 for the CD age categories was won by ... Paul! He jumped away from the start line to gain 15 seconds very quickly. Soon joined by Colin Roshier, the two worked well together, almost lapping the peloton. Paul proved too strong for Roshier in the final sprint taking the win 'easily' (his words).

Paul reflected afterwards: "The blustery conditions made it ideal for a long breakaway effort although the wind and having to climb that hill every 3 minutes made it hard.! It’s great to be on the podium with two riders that I used to read about and aspired to be like when I was a youngster."

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Podium for Neil at Equipe Velo Road Race

Ouch. Top of hill, pained face, break in bits
Neil began today with a pootle out to our most local Road Race Circuit. So close it would be rude not to. 

Not to mention that our pals from Equipe Velo had put a lot of work in to stage their race in their first year. 

It was on the short Mentmore Circuit which means that you have to climb the Mentmore 'lump' lots of times.Hmmm, as Eugen would say.

A very civilised start was great until the CD race caught and passed the AB race. Interesting. And a challenge for the organisers, which they handled with grace and ease. 

more pain
Then the attack happened that a number of people expected: Roy Chamberlain of Corley Drops RT and James Fox CC Luton accelerated, and Neil jumped with them, shortly joined by Paul Dring of Echelon Rotor. ABs overtook CDs and status quo. Oh hang on, not quite, the move became a full-blown break. The foursome was going well but Neil was only too aware that Roy and Mr Fox probably had a bit more to burn. " I knew I had to be careful," he recalls."

He wasn't quite careful enough though and with five laps still to go, the more dynamic duo hung back at the foot of the hill and then shot past Neil and Paul. 

he loves a presentation: Neil flanked by Andy from Wildoo and organiser Simon Moss
"I gave it everything I had to try and hang on," says Neil. "But I just didn't have the power." So, what to do? "I would generally have crawled back to the next guy on the road and teamed up," he continues. "But I knew we had a reasonable gap at that point, so I though I would try and make it on my own."

And so he rode the last five laps solo, with Dring squeezing out another solo effort behind him: "It was one of the biggest efforts I've ever done," says Neil. "I definitely found my limit. I did at least get plenty of cheers at the finish. Probably out of sympathy!" He held a 2 minute gap by the finish, for 3rd place and 2nd in the A category, with Dring just holding off the bunch for 4th.

Neil and John fly round Redbourn Green

Evidently not quite content with this, Neil hared off home to regroup for the Redbourn Fete Du Velo where he had a bash at the  Masters Race, coming in 5th with John in 10th. 

Apparently his legs "weren't quite 100%"...

Win! 1-2 for Luke and Ross with team bonus

win for Luke
A great day out for the team yesterday. Luke, Ross and Steve Clarke did the Fenland Clarion 25 and came home with quite a haul.

Ross is the Daddy
Luke headed the results with a clear win over... Ross by 1:13 . Ross is getting to grips with fatherhood, so at least he has an excuse for the podium position!

team player grandaddy Steve
Steve came in quick enough to clinch the team prize;  a great warm day out for the trio.

Full result is here, thanks to VeloUK

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Win at The Bowl for Jason

no cars at The Bowl of course; yes it's a library photo
Ah, the Bowl. Our favourite Hunting Ground. Well actually on a Tuesday night with the LVRC regulars that is. The regular BC Crits can be a bit more dicey and that's where Jason, our newest member has been struggling a touch.

He's had a fair bit to contend with since he returned from Asia last Autumn. Firstly, there was the re-acclimatisation. Then, once he'd got used to the cold, there was the training. Then he had to get used to hanging around with us. Then his bike snapped. And after all that, he had to revert to 4th cat as a result of his repatriation. Then last weekend, he phoned in sick and had to miss the Ginger Smallwood Road Race.

the excitement of Cash
He has joined a few training sessions with our racers, prompting many a prediction and plenty of bike shop counter innuendo along the lines of 'dark horse' etc. But so far, all the talk has passed without placings and it would be easy to lose patience [although patience is something we tend to be pretty good at].

Not easy for our Jason then. But he stuck with it and got used to the format with a few blasts round Hillingdon and The Bowl over the spring. 

Three weeks ago, he endured a brutal National Masters Road Race which proved there was a decent amount of form to work with.

Finally, on Saturday at the Big Events Crit, he decided on a combative strategy; that is to say, he clipped off the front and no-one followed. For another 40 minutes.: "I was a bit disappointed to be on my own," he says. "It was flaming hard work." Spoken like a true road racer. We like wheels to sit on.

But he did stay away, netting both the Prime and the win, with a gap of over a minute by the end. "We knew he could do it," Ian Baynes said afterwards. "He's pretty experienced and you can see that he's relishing the training, so I'm sure it won't be long before the next few points drop." Adding his congratulations, Neil: "He wasn't sitting up was he? No slacking there, looking forward to getting him in the next cat up!"

Monday, 15 June 2015

Letchworth Grand Prix 2015

Paul nipped up to Letchworth for a Crit yesterday; round 2 of the 'Tour of Hertfordshire' town centre series. Having already taken 2nd in round one on the testing twisty circuit in Bricket Wood he was looking forward to taking on a stronger field of riders on the more flowing Letchworth course.

'You need to get near the front early,' says Paul and he was true to his word. Fast off the start line, he took the lead and strung the bunch right out into a long line for the first lap. The pace remained high but it did not stop a small group of 3 forming off the front containing eventual winner Mike Jackson of CC Luton.

The bunch was not giving up however. Chasing hard, the break never gained more that 15 to 18 seconds and with the pace that high, the trio cracked under the pressure leaving only Mike who was being reeled in quickly over the last few laps.

As the pace of the chase took its toll, the peloton by now had disintegrated leaving only 5 riders to sprint in for 2nd with Paul sitting nicely in 2nd wheel entering the final lap.

Plenty of kamikaze moves from riders that had been sitting in through the last few corners followed. It was all a question of timing so Paul held his nerve and preserved his punch. Taking a few riders wide whilst still maintaining a great position for the final sprint, he launched with 150 metres to go and took the sprint by a tyre width.
crit-ical - Paul Caton at the Letchworth Grand Prix

"That was he fun," he reflected. "It feels great to get a high placing against riders who are 10+ years younger than me!"

Although we haven't had official confirmation, we reckon he's now the series leader in the Masters category by a fair old margin. Bravissimo!

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Win for Steve at the Linc RRA 50

Steve nipped up to Lincolnshire yesterday. Not sure why but the main thing is he came away with the win for Vets on Standard.

As usual, he reports it was "hard" and modestly played it down but for someone who was in intensive care two years ago, it's a particularly sweet result.

Full race result posted here, thanks veloUK!

Sunday, 3 May 2015

GS Vecchi LVRC Race

Paul pulls through on a dreadful day

May has arrived. In calendar terms only for now. Today saw the GS Vecchi Race run in very difficult conditions, not least for the organiser, Terry Morgan who had to switch courses late in the day, instruct marshals not to wave flags and keep everything running smoothly as several waves of torrential rain gusted across the course. Thanks Terry.

Neil's wondering how he can keep the dirt off the car seats
The weather put one or two off but our three riders made the start line. Just. Neil & Baynesy were ejected from a local pub car park whilst getting ready meaning they had to join the race on the neutralised section, but the junction was made and all settled down, well, 'settled' doesn't really seem appropriate. We will, however, not succumb to use of the 'E' word.

A tough climb on each of 7 laps of a short-ish 8 mile circuit? "Staccato," said Ian, "Challenging," said Paul. Neil? He was was too busy cleaning his mouth out.

Vince Devine of Finchley set the agenda in the A's as expected. Unexpectedly, his 1st escape was reeled in after 2 laps, but it wasn't long before he went again, along with a few other s for company. Neil admits he was caught napping, "Not that I'm sure I had the legs either though," he adds. The remainder of his race was spent being generally a bit narky, knowing that the winning places were filled by the front group and wishing he'd given it everything to go with Phil Starr of Python RT when he launched a classy bridging move. 3/10

Baynesy dishes some dirt
Baynesy continued his rising form with some strong moves and was always near the front on the climb. Except when the break went. Or when he got caught behind a crash.  Then he punctured with two to go and wore out a pair of cleats when a tube donation went wrong. Game over.

he does it again - top result and podium for Paul

Paul rolled round without the drama of the A's in group C in characteristic style.

Understated as ever, he mentioned that it was a bit of a shame he might have to clean the bike when he got home. Oh yes, he took 3rd place in group C. Smooth.

So a gritty performance by all, but the cream rose to the top as it tends to do. Thanks to Paul Burgoine for some seriously good pics - more on his zenfolio site.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Win for John Lacey at the Virgin Active Road Race

St Jean up to speed on first outing

John doesn't like hills. Strangely, he has spent the early weeks of the season masochistically riding some hilly TTs for the Hemel, although he did dodge the Sid Latchford, very kindly offering to marshal that day.

So, he's hidden his form under something of a bushel, until last Tuesday when a speed training session exposed his resurgent athleticism. We kept that under wraps of course...

On to today, and he was obviously feeling strong, piling straight into the early break with Graham Dolby on the first lap. Joined by one more, the trio stayed together for most of the race. 

speed session last week. Don't worry, he does have a bike in team colours - thanks Eugene Rack for the pic

This was surprising because the gruppo was being blown apart by the high pace as they tried to manage the gap. The front of this group numbered only 7 by the last lap including our Paul who was playing things canny as usual and keeping his powder dry. 
gratuitous sponsor promo pic

They caught John's trio in plenty of time for the finale and it looked like a regular sprint finish was on the cards but John had prepared his own script and in characteristically 'Jean Diesel' style, he launched of the front just before the Ultimo Chilometro: "The guy on my wheel was napping, I had done a quick recce and I knew it was a fast finish which suits me - flat tailwind." And suit him it did - a massive solo effort propelled him over the line in fine style.

Paul had saved a lot of energy playing the team game in the main group so he was ready for the sprint, but couldn't quite get past Phil Rayner, taking 3rd place. "No real surprise there really," he reflects. "He's an ex international sprint specialist so I'm not too unhappy." 

*sponsor message* Paul was trialling his new tmgpro VR001 aero jersey. This obviously didn't get him the win but his verdict on the new team issue? "Perfect". 

Monday, 13 April 2015

Luke on the Podium again

the ding dong continues

One of the first drag strip outings for the Cronomen yesterday, and Luke got the better of Ross this week at the Beds Road F1b/25. By one second. Ross has retreated to the garage for a strip down, relube and rebuild (the bike, that is). Thanks, as ever, to Davey Jones for the pics.

Ross - lower
Luke - faster
Luke was on the podium with 55:20, Ross ('obvs') 55:21, Tony at 1:01:53 (not overjoyed) and Steve at 1:02:47 (definitely not overjoyed).

Following last week's team win over Arbis-Colbert at the Icknield, we've noticed a new rider appeared on the result sheet for this event. Further research on Simon Norman reveals a 'new signing'. They're clearly relishing the challenge...

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Team Win at the Icknield

Shaking off Friday's disappointment
rough weather and then a detached crank - bad luck at the Welwyn Hilly for Ross on Friday

After the miserable weather of Good Friday at the Welwyn Hilly, our Cronomen bounced back  at one of our most local events on Sunday.

er, is that a smile Luke?
 The Icknield Hilly is always a good opportunity to refresh local rivalries after the winter layoff, although our road contingent steered clear this year. 

Helping to headline the result was Ross with 44:44, edging out brother Luke by 12 seconds. Starting the season in fine form, Tony May put in a very strong ride which lifted us above local opponents Arbis-Colbert race team to take the team prize by more than a minute. In fact, we would have still had the win with Steve Clarke's time, only 29 seconds behind. 

Finally, Darren Powell took to the start line for the first time this season. With a time of 52:03, he was only just into the bottom half of the result and is clearly starting from a decent level.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Top Tens in the Sid Latchford

Luke gets the upper hand

It was the first day of British Summer Time yesterday but despite the mild temperatures, the weather was quite simply awful. 50mph+ gusts of wind and driving heavy rain were not conducive to fast times.

We had two non-starters out of 5 on the start sheet and thankfully they were not the strongest 2 so we came up 2nd in the team competition. 5th, 7th and 11th was a great team performance and the field was considerably stronger than last year, with Arctic-Tacx Racing Team turning out in force. It's no shame losing the top spot to them.
1 Arctic Tacx RT 2:39:10
2 TMG Horizon CT 2:46:26
3 Icknield RC 2:55:35
4 Hemel Hempstead 2:58:43
5 Berkhamstead CC 3:03:39
6 Berkhamstead CC 3:11:15
7 Hemel Hempstead 3:14:18
8 Bossard Whs 3:18:15
9 Bossard Whs 3:47:51

Won by none other than former National Hill Climb Champion Tejvan Pettinger of Sri Chinmoy CT, the event has grown dramatically since its first running last year. With the team at Hemel Hempstead Cycling Club doing a great job, it looks set to become the definitive early season 'Hard Riding' event.

Ross trying to stay upright on The Ivinghoe Beacon hairpin

1 80 Tejvan Pettinger Sri Chinmoy CT 0:51:25
2 90 Michael Broadwith Arctic Tacx RT 0:51:32
3 75 Danny Axford Arctic Tacx RT 0:53:21
4 65 Richard Wood Arbis-Colbert 0:53:52
5 81 Luke Clarke TMG Horizon CT 0:54:09
6 66 Tim Bayley Arctic Tacx RT 0:54:17
7 60 Ross Clarke TMG Horizon CT 0:55:00
8 48 Jason Green Beds Road CC 0:55:17
9 76 Tim Davies Icknield RC 0:55:19
10 69 Harry Paine Team Corley Cycles 0:56:40
11 72 Paul Caton TMG Horizon CT 0:57:17
12 33 Matthew Bond Kenton RC 0:57:19
13 31 Jon Friend Beds Road CC 0:57:24
14 25 Ian Turner North Road CC 0:57:53
15 71 John Lacey Hemel Hempstd CC 0:57:54
16 67 James Fox CC Luton 0:58:00
17 57 Ben Nichol High Wycombe CC 0:58:07
18 77 Mike Wragg Arbis-Colbert 0:58:10
19 78 Geoff Reynolds Hemel Hempstd CC 0:58:24
20 45 Grant Orsborn Icknield RC 0:58:30 

After losing the Millennium Trophy to Ross last year, Luke seems to be back in force, taking over 50 seconds out of his older brother.
5th Place for Luke - our fastest rider
His 54:09 includes a smashed rear disc wheel - the result of an argument with a pothole: "It was pretty crazy out there today," he said afterwards. The disc made it really tough - you were fighting the wind in so many places."

Paul Caton agreed: "It was so nice to get back to a warm HQ. Top marks to the organisers who had the great idea of using the Red Lion." Thanks also to Davey Jones for the pics.

Finally, an honourable mention to 'our' Ian Baynes and family who helped out with the marshalling at Dagnall roundabout. They had to put up with some very difficult conditions too.