Hill climb results:
2nd Peter Gray
3rd Kevin Wolff
4th Dave Churchill
6th Nigel Waterfall
7th Ian Bashford
8th John Wynne
10th Dave Osborn
Combined up/downhill results:
Worked out on
points awarded for both events added together.
2nd Kevin Wolff...................16
3rd Peter Gray....................15 pts
4th Dave Churchill................9 pts
Nigel Waterfall...............8 pts
7th Mike Fowler...................7
8th Andy Green................... 6 pts
There we have it ladies
and gentleman, a fine display of cycling athleticism by all on a fine and sunny
sunday...........WELL DONE ALL.
Well it was a great weekend. Sadly due to various
circumstances a couple of the chaps could not make it.
However Friday morning
arrived and six Old Ports arrived for the off, Alan, Vino, Deon, big J, Joe and
me. Off we set via Crowhurst, Dormandsland, Holtye, Hartfield and the Ashdown.
Where we had a bite to eat. We then headed off down to Maresfield, then through
a little lumpy section via Waldron to Horam, then Hartfield, across the Pevensey
levels to Eastbourne.................job done...........all in the dry!!
we had a absentee in the morning, Terry who was suffering from a possible bout
of flu and post tattoo trauma managed after a good old sleep and the sun coming
out to drive in his cab, in atrocious weather down to meet us...........good
After an evening of complex carbohydrates and many protein rich
foods we gathered outside the hotel on Saturday morning. 10.30am came for us to
depart and at the same time torrential rain arrived!! Off we went, but by the
time we got to the top of Beachy Head it had stopped. Coffee was had. Off we
went again with the glorious but tricky descent. We arrived at Jevington quite
early.........it isn't very far you see, this will be altered for future
weekends. Grub was had and we were joined by Andy and Gary ( with his mankiny
rear mudguard ), who had ridden up from home that morning. We left Jevington
with basically more rain all over Beachy Head into Eastbourne.
the pier and poundshop more complex carbohydrates were consumed with grub,
however the previous nights late night was replaced with a 21.30hrs bedtime
Sunday morning was dry, the group gathered for the obligatory
photos, Terry took the bags....good man!! The wind however had totally turned
around from Friday. Same route was undertaken, other than a couple of
misunderstandings and three punctures we all got home ok, just infront of the
I must mention a couple of outstanding efforts, that of Michael
Howe who struggled up the hills going out and back but persevered. Joe Chittock
was outstanding, I would suggest he has not ridden as many miles or climbs,
ever!! Very well done young man, you did well!!
more complex carbohydrates were consumed and much more protein rich foods,
however after Friday nights late bedtime, most people headed back to the hotel
at 21.30 hrs.
Sunday morning eight OPs left, Terry ch more complex
carbohydrates was consumed after visiting the pound shop of course, then more
high protein foods.
With a barrage of e-mails all week from the event organisers about course
changes, road works, bad road surfaces and temporary traffic lights and using
cycle paths it's a wonder we actually got to ride this one. All credit to
Maidenhead & District for sticking with it and putting on a sporting 30mile
TT course. There was plenty of headwind and gusts that seemed to come from all
directions coupled with traffic (lots of traffic) as we negotiated town centers
and unsighted left handers and taking to cycle paths to avoid road works (not
fun when they’re covered in people, other riders and dogs!) - oh and they
weren't kidding about the road surface, come back Crowhurst all is
Anyway, eight 2up TTT entered and the Old Ports had the most
teams with Iain/Andy and Paul/Steve, with Bigfoot riders Kevin Grimshaw and Andy
Ferry 2 minutes behind Paul and Steve - With Steve sporting his new speed
weaponry wheels we rode hoping Kev and Andy didn't catch us - not only did Kev
and Andy not pass us but we came in 2nd overall with Iain and Andy coming in
Team Steve/Paul - 01:18:43 avg. 22.6mph -
Team Iain/Andy - 01:20:40 avg. 21.9mph - 3rd place
an excellent ride and great practice for the Duo - the Old Ports were well
represented with Andy and Iain flying the OPCC colours and doing us proud and
Steve and Paul winning a little beer money
The winning time was by London
Dynamo in 01:09:25 avg. 25.5.
Next stop - The Duo!
So this should have been back on the original and slightly less lumpy G25/89 but as everyone who rode this course for the first time two weeks ago enjoyed it so much East Sussex decided to use the 'E' course again - unfortunately this prompted quite a few DNS, I mean 8 and 9% climbs on a TT course - come on! Ignoring a rather cool and misty start three Old Ports drove over to Maresfield, the weather had cleared by 0630 and the morning promised to be rather pleasant - weather wise anyway! There was a slight tail wind on the A22 which made for a fast first 5-6 miles but once we got on the A272 the tables turned!
Anyway out of a field of 85 riders the Old Ports were:
Kevin Wolff - 1:02:40 - avg. 24mph
Steve Avery - 1:03:53 - avg. 23.6mph
Paul Cloudsdale - 1:08:38 - avg. 22mph
I was number 8 but as 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 DNS I was the first man off and Kev's minute man was Conall Yates who pumped out a 55:43 - Kev you are forgiven for not catching your minute man
Well done to all the Old Ports that entered as everyone PB'd on previous times.
The fastest time was Steve Dennis with 55:01 at an avg. of 27.3mph beating the previous course record by 40s.
Kev Wolff & I entered Dulwich Paragon's 55.2m LVRC race yesterday, held on the challenging Brenchley circuit - basically 9 loops of a 6 mile route, of which 1 mile is up hill over a newly surfaced climb. The same course as last week which, for me, felt a race too far with very sore legs remaining for days afterwards.
My own view of entering the race was (a) it's longer than the Duo, therefore a third block of quality strength & endurance training and (b) surely it can't get worse. It did.
The A/B category was around 40 strong, same for C/D, not sure about the size of the EFHG group - A/B's set off two minutes ahead of C/D's with lead car and marshalls in place on the key corners. There was the usual upping of the pace within the first few hundred yards and an immediate attack of a lone rider. The peleton didn't react, as the headwind out of the second corner was much the same as last week and making it stick was going to be hard. I moved to the front before the climb, strategy being drift to the back by the top but still be in contact and repeat. About half way up the climb the inevitable drift started and the group split into two - no holding back at all today, even on the first loop.
I lost contact way too early, partly hoping one or two would also drift back and I'd end up in a small group working together for the rest of the race. Unfortunately this didn't happen until about 20 miles for me elapsed, even after the C/D group went through. A found two stragglers from the A/B and one C/D and we sat together until my legs had seriously gone - the other A/B pulling out and the C/D just rolling away from me.
Overall the conditions seemed a little tougher, average speeds were lower. I sat with the A/B breakaway that got quite some time on the main group (where Kev was I think) and felt it quite easy sitting with these guys on the flat - it's just going up that climb that was doing me in. But, as I say, great strength & endurance training and my legs are worse again today.
After 6 races in 17 days, I am well and truly knackered and now need to recover quite a bit.
Kev did bloody well again...getting into the break after bridging, very tough and he's getting stronger than before!
This was the postponed July event which got cancelled, a new course (another one!) was measured out and apparently approved in record time for a 120 strong field to complete. The course basiclly bumbles you round two 10 miles loops of the A24/A264/A2220 with a little bit of stuffing at either end to make the required 25, not quite death by roundabout but there were 26 or was it 27 of the bloody things! I'm told that the course didn't 'give' anything back which I think means that the steady drags up to the A2220 turn didn't rewarded you with fast returns due to a slight head wind with many Old Ports complaining they couldn't get 40mph let alone above it.
Anyway we had a good showing of 6 Old Ports
Dave Warne - 00:59:19 avg. 25.34mph
Steve Avery - 01:00:32 avg. 24.87mph
Hugh Pelling - 01:00:48 avg. 24.8mph
Paul King - 01:00:51 avg. 24.79mph
Paul Cloudsdale - 01:04:19 avg. 23.37mph
Andy Green - 01:04:52 avg. 23.25mph
Peter Tadros from InGear Quickvit Trainsharp rolled through with a 52:32 avg. 28.7mph - he didn't complain about not being able to do more than 40mph on the down section from the A2220!
Team Old Port came 3rd in the combined Fastest Team beaten to 2nd by Eastbourne Rovers by only 27 seconds, 1st place went to Crawley Wheelers.
Finally Steve Avery picked up 1st place for best improvement on LTS - well done Steve.
So, Warney was the fastest man on the day (well done), Steve got some money for something I don't really undestand (well done again), this was my fastest 25 ever and team Old Port put on a good show for overall 3rd - I guess it was worth getting up at 5:15 after all
Well done and congrats guys.
Roadworks caused a late change of course from the rolling Horsmonden circuit to
the SERRL Brenchley loop with its single bas***d of a climb up Knowle road and
it's hill top finish.
Messrs. Wolff and Hawthorn took to the starting
line along with old Old Portlian, Mike James, who was riding for the hosts
InGear Quickvit. A rolling start downhill with A,B group off at 10.00 , C/D's at
10:02 and the remainder at 10:04. After the turn into Churn lane the control car
pulled and away and the race was on.
Oh the embarrassment, with only one
lap down a break from the C/D group come hurtling up from behind shouting at the
A/B's to keep left, the over 50 charge led by Rapha Condor's Bob Downs, a pro
who stood on top of a podium multiple times in the 80's and shows no intention
of slowing down.
Third lap down and a gap appeared on the climb where a
contingent of eight of so riders put ten seconds into the bunch. Sitting at the
back I didn't even see it go and by the time we crested they were well into the
descent. That's the thing about the Brenchley course, a solo escapee on the
climb needs to put thirty to forty seconds into the group or they will be closed
down on the two mile descent to the next turn by a small peloton. A small break
of five or more can increase the gap on the descent and then maintain and
increase the gap. Once they hit the junction then they can disappear out of
sight and out of mind.
A definite lack of cohesion in the peloton gap the
break the advantage to stay away. Out of desperation I tried to bridge on the
last lap, kicking out of the top of the climb with a gap that I managed to
maintain for around three miles when I run out of steam and sat in ready for the
up hill sprint. Not so much lack in the finish either getting boxed in and
diverted temporarily onto the grass verge as a rider cut across me.
summary, legs felt good but tactical blunders led to a missed opportunity to go
with the break.
Back at the HQ there was the usual jovial attitude at
accompanies LVRC events with banter and excuses in abundance. Chatting to a guy
from Thornton Heath road club in the car park, he told me that he decided that
when he got to sixty he'd do a road race (his first) and that was three years
ago and he' still enjoying it.
The final event of the season saw a field of six rides start, the weather was blustery, cold and rain clouds were threatening. Dave M and Gary B decided to take a watching position and allowed 3 Ports to challenge 3 Bigfoot riders for nights honour.
1st Kevin Grimshaw 30.47
2nd Steve Avery 32.08 6 points
3rd Paul King 33.35 5 points
4th Paul Cloudsdale 34.34 4 points
5th Rachael Haley 39.23
6th Dave Churchill DNF.
Time keeper Mike G. Pusher off Den M ( thanks to both for their support)
The normal post race banter included the follow comments; Dave C declaring he had already ridden 86 miles, the two Paul`s discussing their dual on the 2nd lap, Rachael having ridden her bike with the front brake engaged. Kevin claiming to have had two perfect laps but was no faster than his previous effort, and for me a dropped chain on the 2nd lap. TT would not be the same without this. The evening finished with some good food and beer at the local pub.
I haven't been back to Hog Hill since last year, using it back in September 2013 as a first real foray back into bunch racing and seeing how it felt.
If it isn't already obvious, the addiction hit me immediately and pretty much driven my 2014 to avoid TT's and get stuck into the adrenaline & risk of the Road.
Last night was the last of an evening series and I was too late to get into the Olympic Park Cat 4 Crit on Wednesday, so ventured over the Dartford Bridge and down the A13 to do battle with the characters that seem to have infinite experience over my determination. The start time was 18:00 and the weather looking ominous; about 25 A/B/C/D riders signed on, with about the same E/F/G/H as far as I could tell. The race set for 1 hour + 3 laps of the 1.1km lower circuit.
The lower circuit is blessed with two fast sweeping corners and a slightly more technical up hill left hander that needs power applied extremely quickly to stay in - get that wrong and your elastic stretches over and over. My warm up was OK, but Sunday's 52m LVRC road race was still in the heart & legs - not feeling overly 'spritely' in reality.
When the race kicks off, you always really feel better than you imagine - your heart rate goes up and your system adjusts to the strength needed to race.
I stayed in for 40 minutes, but mis-timed a huge attack of 5 riders to catch two that previously went off the front (one of which is ex-pro and GB rider Antony Wallis - who won on Sunday by 5 mins (remember the orange skin-suited monster - Kev found out who he is)). I got caught out by 3 riders that went up my inside and caught the 5 - leaving me with a small group that for love nor money just couldn't bridge the gap. We lapped the EFGH Group twice and Antony caught the ABCD and went past them twice I think - so so strong, god knows how he does at at what must be 14 stone.
Anyway, my legs & heart rate had just had enough at about 55 mins and I ended up about 2 minutes back I think - some ABCD's behind me but not many I fear.
Great fun, a little sprinkle of rain, but even the tougher guys reported that it was hard - wind was a big factor in two places and I was fairly happy with over 23mph average in that.
Onto Horsmonden with Kev this Sunday - 55.2m lumpy against the monsters!
It would have been all too easy for ERCC to cancel this event when first hearing that road works would stop us racing on the Halland stretch of the A22, but a new course was planned. The new course was some what 'harder' than the original course, coupled with a 15mph head wind made the 8% climb at Anchor Hill hell! Ignoring the wind the weather stayed dry if overcast.
Anyway out of a field of 100 riders six Old Ports entered:
Hugh Pelling - DNS
Jon Gough - DNS
Ian Bashford - 1:04:06 - avg. 23.4mph placed 29th
Dave Warne - 1:05:02 - avg. 23mph placed 31st
Steve Avery - 1:05:41 - avg. 22.9mph placed 35th
Paul Cloudsdale - 1:08:44 - avg. 21.9mph placed 47th
Well done to all the Old Ports that entered and especially to Bash who so likes those hills - Bash also rode the ERCC 10 on Saturday in a very respectable 24:15.
The winning time was 55:51 by Steve Kane at an avg. of 27mph, a very respectable time on a testy lumpy course in less than ideal conditions.
While others were honing fitness for the Duo by headbanging on the newly created G25/89E, messrs. Hawthorne and Wolff were attempting to put racing miles into the legs on what was a riot of a course that consisted of six laps of an eight mile circuit around the wilds of Essex (the locale of Chelmsford to be a little bit more precise, check out Strava for the course http://www.strava.com/activities/181421990 ).
Upon arrival at Tipps Cross memorial hall the air was filled with jovial banter and the heady aroma of embrocation. These LVRC affairs are much more relaxed then BC events where the modus operandi is to pysche out your opponents while looking focused and ready for business. Our only comment on our fellow riders was their girth (thighs and stomach) and in paticular one chubby fellow in an orange skin suit who looked liked he had to have it painted on.
A brisk day with a strengthing westerly wind that could make a difference in a bunch sprint as the last mile was directly into the wind.
So off we go with a rolling start of six laps. The normal road race behaviour kicked in as soon as the pace car pulled away with the first twenty minutes a manic pace including serious of surges and attacks which saw a two distinct breaks in the peloton. My own complete lack of experience coming to fore as I jumped on the first lap only to be reeled in pretty quickly by the main bunch. After the first lap the pace receeded somewhat with a few surges to make things interesting.
Approaching the end of the second lap a strung out peloton entered a wooded area where myself and Iain were happily wheel sucking towards the end of the bunch and I was sitting just behind and to the left of Iain when I noticed a shadow on the other side of the road in my peripheral vision. I remember thinking it must have been a car but I don't recall hearing or seeing it approaching. That thought was instanty followed by a clatter of metal on tarmac, a sound road racers know can only be a crash in a fast moving peloton. Looking over my shoulder, all the riders behind me had gone down and I could only assume that it was a touch of wheels and the inevitable concertina effect of other riders piling in at 25mph.
A couple of hunderd yards later a ripple went through the peloton that a large Deer had shot across the road into the rider behind me. Iain spotted it before it turned direction out of his path to vector behind him and I can only assume it missed me by a foot at most.
Subsequent laps saw the ambulance on the scene attending to the rider from Luton CC who took the full force of a fast-moving Venison burger. I'm not sure what the final toll on him was but he'll be luckly to get away with just a set of broken ribs.
Back to the race were the OPCC contingent made a few attempts to break away, including our OPCC treasurer coming to the front screaming 'death or glory' and accelerating out of the saddle but his break was rudely interuppted by a tractor. On the last lap the break had gone out to four minutes and the peloton sat up to await the bunch sprint for the minor placings. Iain pushed his way to the pointy end two miles from home, a cunning plan or tactical suicide? The final turn from home into the wind and the pace picked up with one KM to go.
Still a little nervous in a bunch sprint I had decided just to cruise those last few hundred meters but as everyone kicked it seemed safer to go forward then have others coming around you.
Final placings of the OPCC contingent but we both finished in the pack. Rather happy with that result myself.
The lesson learnt yesterday, however, is to never underestimate anyone at an LVRC event because the chubby guy in the orange skin suit won!
North Hampshire RC - 25 Mile Time Trial on the Bentley course, near Alton in Hampshire.
On a very windy day that generallly depressed, by quite a margin, the times posted, here are the times for OPCC/OPCC(Bigfoot) which I am recalling from memory as did not note down.
Dave Warne - 59.24
Paul King - 1.01.42
Dave Churchill - 1.01.52
Peter Gray - 1.02.22
These times were none too shabby when viewed against the rest of the times.
Winner (demonstrating the wonders of Yoga and Zen when applied to TTing)
Tejvan Pettinger - 51.29 Sri Chinmoy (who goes brilliantly well whatever the weather which separates the top echelon riders from the rest of us)
Last Thursday I entered the 'Dunton Park Series #8' LVRC event, which had been switched from Dunton Park to the new Olympic Park Road Race circuit by the organisers.
I'd been looking for an opportunity to get there and try this circuit, particularly after Kev reported having a great race (a BC Cycling Legacy Supporters League Event a couple of weeks before). I was not disappointed, even with the rain that had closed in and dropping temperature - 45 riders signed on and all categories (A > G) all released together for 45 minutes + 3 laps.
I actually managed to warm up by riding the wrong way around it, so quickly found myself having to learn-as-I-go in terms of corners the opposite way to how I planned to take the lines, not to say where to push on the rises and postions to hold. No matter, this was going down to (a) first Crit after two weeks in the mountains and (b) learn the circuit for next time.
The wet was a huge factor for me, I've never experienced stinging eyes quite like it and needed to drop back a little simply to get some safe space to rub them and try and get what felt like acid out of them. I did manage it OK, stayed in the bunch and very much enjoyed the terrific sweeping corners (with great traction, even in the wet) at 25mph+. The LVRC riders are generally very safe, better than Cat 4's that can change lines and slow up in the wrong places. We had some of the usual monsters with big legs and power to spare, the pace held high and it was just a question of confidence in close-order racing in the wet into the frequent twists & turns.
I decided to stop my eyes stinging by getting on the front, it worked, and then thought I'd have a go with about 5 minutes remaining - got the usual 100 meters before it just become too much to hold (remember point (a) above - legs just not having 'top end'). I drifted back in, waited for 2 laps remaining and decided to go for one mightly attack from the back - went right up the inside up a sweeping climb to the front in about 300 meters and allow a few to come past, but hold better position for the final sprint. Sort of worked (remember point (a) above) and legs faded - ended up a little towards the back but extremely pleased to have held my own and shown the peleton an OP shirt willing to work on the front and attack.
Can't wait for the next one in the dry!
Club Kit stock level and prices now updated as of August 8th http://www.oldportlianscc.co.uk/Main/ClubKit.php. Contact Julian firstname.lastname@example.org for orders.
For the uninitiated team time trials on our domestic scene are either, two up, three up ( time counts on the second man over the line ) and four up ( time counts on the third man over the line )
Todays course was the H25/8 Bentley course.
The Old Ports had one four up team consisting of Andrew Green,Gary Blunt,Hugh Pelling andJohn Mulvaney. which I will call team one (T1).
The two ups were: Ian Bashford/Peter Gray,T2, Dave Churchill ( Bigfoot )/Paul King,T3, Dave Warne/Steve Avery, T4.
T1..........1hr 2min 12sec.........avg 24.12 mph
Winners of four up from Velo Club Godalming & Haslemere in 53min 10sec avg 28.21 mph
Two up results
T2 ..........57min 32 sec.........avg 26.1 mph
T2............1hr 0min 8sec.......avg 24.95 mph
T4............58min 29sec.........avg 25.65 mph
The winning duo being from A3CRG with a 50min 28sec.........avg 29.72 mph
Back at the start of the season I had some fine ambitions of doing a 4.30 in the SCCU 100. Reality had dawned in the recent ESCA 50 when I came in with the 2.15, maybe 4.30 wasn't going to happen, but I nursed dreams of something around the 4.40 mark. Then I saw the course. Hmmm.
This one kicks off as did the SCCU 50 with a run out to Bolney, a trip to Henfield and then onto the A24. I had an early start 6.16 and that meant the traffic hadn't built to much by that stage. It the heads down to Washington, before turning back on a lumpy twisty bit of road through Partridge Green and back onto the A24. We had 41/2 laps like that to do. While I had been on reasonable schedule up to the start of the first lap I was losing a couple of minutes each time I went through. I kept a consistent pace, and was doing a reasonable job of maintaining the heart rate and decent position on the big. I just didn't have the power. I held my own on the A24 but found strong guys spinning past of the return.
Other G100 courses use this for a couple of laps, and I have never found it easy, but with the loss of the course after Southwater this was pretty much the only option. Finished with a 4.50.22 that was some way from where I wanted to be, but as they say its the race of truth. Only one other Port entered today, John Mulvaney and faired much better with a 4.42. That said for those who can it isn't that tough a course. The winner Steve Kane of Brighton Excelsior romped home with a 3.54, which is frankly incredible.
Big thanks to Jacqui Champion who was there to encourage and hand me a bottle, and another big thanks to Sam Ramsey of Lewes Wanderers. Sam had been clever enough to park his car near the finish, and generous enough to offer me a lift back to the HQ, sparing me an extra 4 miles I didn't need. Anyway, glad its done, and kind of accepting that this is a season of rebuilding after two fallow years.
Paul C's pix of the afternoon now showing in the gallery
Due to a particularly bad weather forecast for Sunday, the OPCC BBQ has had to be cancelled.
Lots of OPCC in action over the last few days. Individual accounts can be viewed by scrolling down but this weekends roll call of honour.
Dave Warne showing a superfandango performance up at Newmarket with a blistering time of 54:37 at an average of 27.46 MPH over a 25 course
Bash and Duvet in action on the G25/89 Maresfield parcour recording respectable times on a blustery day on my most favourite of courses.
Iain Hawthorn found himself off the front of a road race for a few laps and was obviously savouring the spot light of the solo breakaway until swept up unceremoniously by the pelaton just a few laps from the line.
But we reserve the biggest kudos for Andy Green and Say Leddington who took on the Raid Pyrenean and WON.
This mid-season performance monitoring event took place on course G25/89 on the A22.
2 riders from our club entered, Ian Bashford and Paul King (Bashers and Duvet in OPCC tongue). The course runs south from Maresfield to turn at the Boship RAB about 13 miles due south. It's a mix of narrow and quite broad single carriageway with a not too bad surface, mostly. The terrain rolls but nothing on it to stall you, if you are going OK enough to roll a gear or nick it down one and spin over the crest of the climbs and drags.
Yesterday was quite blowy and hard to tell exactly where it was in your favour, but leaving you under no illusions when it wasn't!! While certainly not a gale, the wind put Duvet in mind of some annoying bloke picking a fight with you by, jabbing, poking and pushing at you, constantly provoking you to push back, which of course Duvet and Bashers duly took pleasure in doing. Bashers was marginally more the pugilist yesterday, but Duvet still had a good dig!
The conditions were reflected in the winner's time which was a short 54.06 by Phil Allen (long 52s and 53s are the usual top times on this course and Peter Tadros has done a 51.02 I think). Behind him were 2 54s and then a bit of a gap to the rest of the field with middling 55s downwards (Christian Yates and Iain Brogden were mid to long 55s).
With that in mind Bashers time of 1.00.20 (16/59) and Duvet's time of 1.01.40 ( 27/59 ) were none too shabby. Quite respectable in fact and a good indicator of more good times to come from the both of them. Duvet's time was a course PB by 2 minutes. To be within 6 minutes of on form riders like Yates and Brogden in a 25 on a course and on a day like that, is a nice place to be at this point in anyone's season.
Next week, the 3 man OPCC TT circus (Bashers, Duvet and Warney 54) is performing down at Molash, near Canterbury, with another dose of single carriageway time racing and local rubbish course PB bagging (we hope).
This is a 25 mile tt that starts in Newmarket, heads south on the A14/A11 to Four Went Ways 12.8 miles then turn and retrace to Newmarket, good road surface, and loads of 70mph lorries to keep you company, no chance of relaxing on this road! It's scary! To say the least, but not a bad day weather wise, the wind was up but it was with me going south, and
not too tough coming back? I think the road is sheltered in places, but saying that I did feel strong and my legs stayed with me to the finish, I'm not going back to this course again this season, I had a couple of hairy moments with the lorries sounding there hooters and they passed me, hmmmm anyway other than that I enjoyed the moment of a new PB by over 3 minutes, and to finish less than one minute behind Lee Turner of Sigma Sport is good for the morale.
One old port entered.
Dave Warne........................54:37 ave speed ......27:4641 mph
Matt Smith.........................48:34.....................30:8853 mph
Another lovely evening welcomed us last night, both clubs struggled to put a full team out, SERC only had two riders out,
this was due to holidays so not really a fair contest as we had six riders on the start line, that aside we all took part and
a good time was had by all, next weeks return meeting with the SERC has been postponed for a couple of weeks due to
holidays so Les Humphrey will advise on a new date next week.
Thanks to Oz and Dave Mercer for doing the timing and pushing off duties, also the old ports team for making this an event.
Gary blunt..................37:18 ...........1
Paul Cloudsdale...........35:13 ...........2
Steve Avery ...............32:29............4
David Churchill ...........32:18............5 Bigfoot
Keith Lea ..................31:10. Addiscombe CC
Thursday evening saw my second visit to the wonderful Newchapel circuit, on a very warm and breezy evening, looking forward to another fast and challenging 30 mile handicap race. The race was put on by the 34 Nomads, so a couple of friendly faces of two ex OP's, Stuart Hourigan & Phil Watkins offered much encouragement for a good ride.
Strangely the handicapping system decided four Cat 4 riders would be set off ahead of a second Cat 4 bunch, with the usual Cat 3 group ahead of the E/1/2's. I was in the four first Cat 4 riders, not quite sure how we would stay out with a bunch able to move so much quicker. Rather 'negatively', two of my four immediately sat up leaving me with an Oxted CC rider making a little headway through-and-off. One and a half laps in, I dropped him as he wasn't willing to dig in and basically make any effort to stay away.
So, in true OP style and sensing an opportunity of my life, I went for it and soloed as hard as I could - fortunately no slowing into corners was helpful and occasional shouts from the spectators added motivation to the pain. Unfortunately coming out of a corner on lap two, the lead car (driven by Stuart Hourigan) was forced to stop by a tractor turning left out of his farm and onto our side of the road. I was therefore also forced to stop, swear my head off, then get going again - at the point the Oxted guy rolled around the corner and once again decided he wouldn't two-up with me - so I set off on my solo effort, part two. Stuart did drop back a little to allow me some time to regain my time advantage, but he obviously wasn't able to provide me with any serious favours.
I think just before lap 5 I was swept up, so I was able to get some recovery in the peloton and sit in waiting for the final lap.
And what a final lap it was - I made the move of my life out of the first corner seeking a particular riders wheel (this guy finished 4th last time and mentioned his tactics to me in the car park). My strategy was to simply get on his wheel out of that corner and hang onto it, he was planning to 'go for it' just by a small bridge and cane it to the line. Just hang onto it, that's all I had to do.
I didn't. The best move of my life rapidly turned into the worst move of my life as the inside line slowed and I basically drifted onto the front of the peloton. Bugger, never EVER the place you want to be as everyone will sit in to store up energy for the sprint at the exact point I'm expending it. I tried switching off the racing line, back onto the racing line, back off it again...to try and force someone into coming past me. Did they hell - I was left to suffer.
So I tried to slow enough to get some recovery myself and then adopt my new friends strategy - go for it at the bridge. I went, promptly had my legs full up with lactic acid and the entire group swept past me and I finished at the back of the bunch. Heart Rate average was 179, peaking at 189 in the final dig, and average speed of 25.3 mph against the peloton average of 26 mph.
For 20 minutes I dreamt I would solo for a win and Cat 3. For 10 seconds I thought my time had come.
It will sometime soon...hopefully on the 10th July, when it's back to Newchapel if anyone would like to come...a great circuit!
Now available in the gallery Gallery by selecting '2014 Open 25' from the Album menu or click here to view directly.
Thanks to Paul 'Snapper' Cloudsdale for the camera work