Pedalon hosted round 6 of the 23/24 Wessex League, at Popham Airfield. The usual mixture of fast straights, treacherous corners and technical woodland meant this course was designed to test the mettle of the competitors. The early morning sun gave way to perfect racing conditions, and a buzzing crowd awaited the racers.
Under 8: Boys: Noah Davis – Cotswold Veldrijden, took an early lead and never looked back, securing a dominant victory, followed by Harry Wagstaff – Sprockets CC, and Oscar Jones – North Hants RC, took third.
Girls: Theodora Hall – Kingston Junior CC, showcased remarkable skills to finish first in the girls’ category, followed closely by Emma Coomber – Poole Wheelsers, and in third, Annie Forsyth.
Under 10: Boys: Edward Nicholls – Hillingdon Slipstreamers, proved his prowess by outpacing the competition and securing first place, ahead of Freddie Trosh – Sotonia CC, and Fletcher Pierce – Sprockets CC.
Girls: Nancy Wagstaff, representing Sprockets CC, demonstrated remarkable determination, clinching the top spot, Anoushka Lee, from Solent Pirates, rode a strong race to take second, ahead of Maggie Sanderson, riding for Sprockets CC.
Under 12: Boys: Jacob Wadlow from Solent Pirates, showed an incredible display of bike-handling skills earned him the gold, Riley Tonner, Palmer Park, was in fine form to take second, and Max Atkins, riding for Cotswold Velidrijen, secured third. Girls: Isabella Mar-Molinero, riding for Solent Pirates, put on a stellar performance to secure the victory, followed by Florence Cooper (Palmer Park) and Matilda Wilks, from Sotonia CC.
Under 14: Open: Harry Cooper, riding for Palmer Park, led from start to finish, making him the champion. Thomas Wilks of Sotonia CC was close behind, taking second place, and Daniel Branford of Poole Wheelers secured the last podium place with a great ride. Girls: Eva Mar-Molinero of Solent Pirates showcased her grit and won the girls’ category, with Georgia Lovett of Palmer Park in second, and Amelie Freeman also representing Palmer Park, taking third.
Under 16: Open: Jack Morgan of Solent Pirates managed to navigate the challenging terrain to clinch first place, just ahead of a strong Sam Genazzini, also of Solent Pirates, and Cypher Tindell, representing Sprockets CC. Girls: Isabella Hall of Sotonia CC demonstrated remarkable control, taking home the gold, ahead of Kirsten Brown, Sprockets CC, who took silver, and Isla Hoult, Velo Club Venta, took bronze.
Junior Open: A fierce battle ensued among the junior male competitors. Eventually, Ben Coppola, riding for Scott Sports edged out the competition for the top spot, Miles Horner, of Ignite Development, rolled in second, closely followed by Reece Pittman, riding for Lee Valley.
Veteran 40-49: Adrian Lansley of Pedalon was unstoppable, taking home the gold, ahead of an in form Paul Lloyd, Banjo Cycles, and Andrew Gardiner, riding for Sotonia.
Veteran 50-59: Open: Mike Simpson of Beeline RT dominated this category, leaving no room for doubt, followed by Anthony Turner, of Cotswold Veldrijden, and Jamie Norfolk, riding for Pedalon.
Veteran 60+: Open: Tim Costello of GA Vecchi conquered the course, earning the top spot in the veteran 60+ category, ahead of Dave McMullen, riding for Cotswold Veldrijden, and Kev Holloway, of GS Vecchi.
Senior: Joshua Jones riding for All IN Racing secured the victory in the Senior Open, in a close race. Oscar Hutchings, of Team for 2000 took second, ahead of Pedro Hutchinson, riding for TrainSharp.
Junior: Rebecca Gascoyne of Pedalon rode strongly to secure victory, with Emma Harrison, of Sotonia, taking second.
Senior: Anna Boniface, of Reading CC, had a great ride to take the win, Sarah Hickman, of Nova RT, took second, and Lindy Brazier-Larkin, of Sarum Velo, took third.
Vet 40-49: Kate Robson, riding for Pedalon secured a stellar victory in her race, followed closely by Sara Hallas, riding for Chichester City, and Gemma Wilks, representing Sotonia CC.
Vet 50-59: An exciting race saw Caroline Goward, of Scott Racing, took victory, ahead of Kate West, Salisbury Road CC, and Katy Parsons, of Salisbury Road CC.
Vet 60+: Julie Hughes, riding for Pedalon, demonstrated great form to take the win, ahead of Catherine Pascoe, representing New Forest CC.
Popham Airfield proved to be an outstanding battleground for all categories, and it was fantastic to see riders of all ages embracing the challenges it presented. Hats off to all the competitors for giving it their all on this hard, technical course. Thank you to Pedalon for hosting such a well run event. See you all next time for round 7, promoted by Newbury Velo at Kingsclere on 5th November.