The penultimate round of the league was promoted by Take 3 Tri at the popular Dalton Barracks venue, known for its flat but technical course.
Early morning rain turned to snow, making for a slippery but beautiful setting for the first races of the day. While the conditions were exciting for the kids, they were not so kind to the (until now faultless) live results system, nor our usual reporter Graham’s camera equipment. We are therefore left here with a few snaps and soundbites until full results are confirmed in the next day or two. Thanks to everyone who contributed! More photos and reports on races not covered below would be much appreciated (email: email@example.com).
Full results now here!
Under 10s, Under 12s & Youth
Fresh snow on a sub-layer of mud led to carnage on the first lap of the Under 10s race, leaving three clear leaders out front, with Wilf Jones taking another lone win in the end. As forecast, the temperature rose, the snow became wetter and the riders colder. The U12s battled on valiantly, although there were a few tears. The Youth race saw a few casualties – there were quite a few who started who didn’t finish. Euan Macleod took a great win in the U16 boys’ race.
By the time the Juniors set off, the conditions were ‘properly miserable’, with the freezing rain sending many would-be riders and spectators home early. Angus Hawkins and Callum Macleod took an early lead and distanced themselves from the rest of the race with Will Cooper, suffering from a first-lap puncture (which he admits could have been a pre-race puncture), and Barney Clacy battling for 3rd. Unfortunately, Barney had a serious mechanical which left it clear for Will to take 3rd, with Barney running over the finish line with a broken hanger. Callum won with Angus a few seconds behind.
As has become customary, five Hargorves-Ridely-Montezuma riders (Amy & Kara Perryman, Katie Scott, Helen Pattinson and Abbie Manley) led off the start but with one interloper: Jennifer Forrester (www.Zepnat.com – Lazer Helmets). After the first lap, Amy (1st Junior), Katie and Kara were clear in 1st, 2nd and 3rd, Abbie and Jen chasing, with Helen making up some lost ground in 6th. By half distance, Helen had passed Abbie and her and Jen were making inroads on 3rd place. Kara, however, held strong to the finish, taking 1st Senior, while Jen won a final lap tussle with Helen (1st Vet).
A group of three pulled out a 20-second gap on the field during the first half of the race. They tussled for the lead due to the slippery conditions, all suffering from crashes and mechanical problems. Things started to come together for Sam Allen (Pedalon) in the second half of the race and he managed to pull out the lead until the end, happy to take his third win of the season and the Wessex League overall.
Full results to follow!