On Sunday 11th December the club hosted the penultimate round of the 2016-17 South West Cyclo-Cross League at Torbay Velopark. Early morning mist cleared to reveal a course covered in frost which quickly melted in the sunshine. Last years ankle deep sodden grass and mud had made way for relatively firm ground. Competitors were treated to ideal cross conditions.
In the main race, the fast course lead to many small groups who fought for places throughout the race, positions changing lap to lap. In the men’s categories, Rich Long (Unattached) took an early lead and tried to force a gap to the other racers. As groups started to work together and racers settled into their pace, Matt Loake (South Fork Racing) slowly slowly caught and overtook Long by mid distance. He then built a small gap and maintained it to take the win.
Further back, Marcus Durant held off club mate Daniel Wellings from Somerset RC but eventually succumbed to the younger rider but claimed first Veteran position in fourth.
Andrew Parker, having stood commentating on the earlier races, had used up some of his energy and came in first rider for the MDCC in 8th.
In the women’s race Catherine Kilburn demonstrated the strength built over a season of cross by taking the win. Leading from the gun, she was out of sight after the first few laps. In second position was MDCC rider Juliet Elliot who fought a close battle with Rebecca Cornwell for much of the race, eventually proving faster than the Taw Velo rider.
Check the results page out on the British Cycling website for all the results of the clubs riders. There were some excellent performances from the clubs youngest riders with some very close racing and riders looking to secure their positions in the league standings. Ben Goldsmith taking third in the U10’s race and holding off many older riders, Ross Pratt taking 3rd in the Youth race.
Next week sees the league move on to the last league round at Mount Kelly School,
Tavistock, which will also be the South West Cyclo-Cross Championship so it’s all to ride for!