[report Graham Robins]
Following on from winning last weekend’s regional’s both Sam Allen (PedalOn) and Lindy Brazier-Larkin (Sarum Velo) continued their winning form by winning their respective races today in the Wessex League, and both leading from the front.
Andover Wheelers were the hosts today at a new venue to the league. Redenham Park a short distance from the main A303 to the West Country provided the riders with a mixture of scrub grass and two technical wooded sections on either side of the grass. Rain throughout the week and strong winds did not deter from being a great venue. Even early morning showers did not affect the course which held up well throughout the day.
The senior race started as the sun started to drop away but Allen soon made the most of a quick start pulling out a small gap from Tom Budden (Sotonia CC) and Matthew Wakefield (Team Wakies). Behind this lead group was a trio of riders together, Ben Bishop (Charlottville CC), Oscar Hutchings (VC Venta) and Joe Hickerton (BPC Spokes Racing) around 30secs adrift.
After a couple of laps Allen led Budden by 6secs, Wakefield by 31secs and the chasing trio now at 42secs. Just inside the top ten were the Sarum Velo pairing of David James Brazier and Alex Watkins. Lap four Wakefield go missing and Hutchings and Hickerton taking advantage.
On lap five Allen was now 17secs clear of Budden and the chasing group of Hutchings, Hickerton and Bishop trailing at 1min 51secs. Wakefield had sorted his problems and was 15secs adrift but making up time and he was soon to start climbing back up the leader board. At just over half distance Wakefield had rejoined Hickerton and Bishop but they were nearly three minutes down on our leader.
The Sarum pair were still in close contention and looking for a mistake which soon came as Hickerton had a mechanical as he got tangled in the course taping and he tumbled down to seventh. Hutchings was also trouble and he too slipped of the chase group and down to ninth.
At the bell Allen was 30secs clear of Budden, Wakefield had finally shaken off Bishop but was now over three minutes down on the leader. Brazier had finally escaped his team mate and was now up to fifth. Hickerton was now beginning to close the gap after his earlier problems but ran out of laps.
Continuing her mid season form Lindy Brazier-Larkin (Sarum Velo) led the women’s race opening up a 12secs lead on the opening lap and was never challenged throughout the race.
There was a good mixture of senior and vet riders inside the top ten as Jessica Connor (Cotswold Veldrijden) a vet was 12secs down with Carly Hughes (Fareham Wheelers) third. The rest of the top ten was made up of three seniors, a junior and a couple of vets.
At mid race distance Brazier-Larkin led Lauren Cracknell (PedalOn) by 21secs, Tracy Bremner (NHRC) was third and first vet whilst Carly had Sarah Hickman (IRIS RT) for company. Conner had slipped to sixth just ahead of Donna Short (Cotswold Veldrijden). Coming through the field was 50+ vets Lydia Gould (VC Venta) and she was making good progress.
At the bell, Brazier-Larkin led Cracknell by42secs but just one second behind her was Bremner. Hughes and Hickman were at 1min 8secs, Connor at 1min 21secs and Short at 1min 43secs. Gould had held the wheel of Short over the last lap but couldn’t find a way past. At the chequered flag Cracknell had eased out 10secs on Bremner whilst Hughes put in one last effort to pull away from Hickman. Connor finished second vet, Gould was first 50+ and Short third vet. Connie Stevens (Palmer Park Velo) finished first and only junior and a very creditable 14th overall.
The vet 40+ race saw a two way tussle as regular senior rider Alex Forrester (Zepnat.com) deciding to race the vet race following yesterday’s race at Ipswich in the National Trophy taking on regular vet rider Paul Lloyd (Banjo Cycles). The two were locked throughout the forty minutes. Sam Bishop (Charlottville CC) was the first junior in the combined race and holding third.
Whilst our two leaders were following each other around, and with Bishop on his own it was left to the rest to play catch up. First take up the challenge was Jamie Norfolk (PedalOn) along with David Spencer (VC Venta) and William McDonald (Banjo Cycles). Riding a Wessex race was regular Western League rider Simon Snowdon (73Degree CC) and he was not too far off the pace and inside the top ten.
With a couple of laps to go Lloyd and Forrester were clear of Norfolk by 31secs, McDonald and Bishop were at 56secs, Spencer and Snowdon were together at 1min 26secs, and the Cotswold Veldrijden pairing of Anthony Turner and Peter Kimber were at 1min 44secs. At the flag Lloyd piped Forrester right on the line, McDonald had a little more than Snowdon while Turner had the legs to see off Kimber.
The vet 50+ race saw another win for Kevin Holloway from his GS Vecchi team mate Phillip Boarer. The opening lap saw Holloway lead through the finish line followed closely by Chris Hutchings (VC Venta), Boarer, Rob Waller (Banjo Cycles) and Malcolm Cross (VC Venta). On lap two Cross passed Waller while Mike Williams (Fareham Wheelers) was climbing through the field following a slow start.
At the midrace distance Holloway led Boarer by 21secs; Cross was at 28secs, Hutchings at 35secs and Waller at 43secs. Shaun Green (Stonehenge Triathlon and RC) was locked with Williams at 56secs and Anthony Dyment (NHRC), Phil Connell (Sotonia CC) and Martyn Dymond (C&N Cycles RT) closed out the top ten.
The only changes on the final lap saw Hutchings slip to eighth whilst Rich Collins (PM) replaces Dymond.
1st Sam Allen PedalOn 59mins 04secs
2nd Tom Budden Sotonia CC @16secs
3rd Matthew Wakefield Team Wakies @3mins 32secs
4th Ben Bishop Charlottville CC
5th David James Brazier Sarum Velo
6th Joe Hickerton BPC Spokes Racing
7th Alex Watkins Sarum Velo
8th Thom Hayward VC Venta
9th Chris McGovern SURC
10th Oscar Hutchings VC Venta
1st Lindy Brazier-Larkin Sarum Velo 43mins 33secs
2nd Lauren Cracknell PedalOn @36secs
3rd Tracy Bremner NHRC and 1st vet
4th Carly Hughes Fareham Wheelers
5th Sarah Hickman IRIS Race Team
6th Jessica Connor Cotswold Veldrijden and 2nd vet
7th Lydia Gould VC Venta and 1st vet50+
8th Donna Short Cotswold Veldrijden and 3rd vet
9th Amber Lansley PedalOn
10th Hayley Down Windrush Triathlon Club
1st Lydia Gould VC Venta
2nd Alison Ford GS Vecchi
3rd Catherine Pascoe New Forest CC
1st Connie Stevens Palmer Park Velo
1st Paul Lloyd Banjo Cycles 42mins 58secs
2nd Alexander Forrester Zepnat.com ST
3rd Jamie Norfolk PedalOn
4th William McDonald Banjo Cycles
5th Simon Snowdon 73Degree CC
1st Sam Bishop Charlottville CC
2nd Jay Allen PedalOn
3rd Sam Coulson Palmer Park Velo
4th Luke Williams Andover Wheelers
1st Kevin Holloway GS Vecchi 37mins 57secs
2nd Phillip Boarer GS Vecchi @48secs
3rd Malcolm Cross VC Venta
4th Rob Waller Banjo Cycles
5th Shaun Green Stonehenge Triathlon and Road Club