The sun came out for the 2nd round of the 2013 Cotswold League – with a new event for the calendar, the Performance Cycles South Cerney Road Race. The race is part of the annual Street Fair weekend that takes place across the Bank Holiday weekend, finishing with the annual Duck Race on the Monday after.
The race was massively over-subscribed (118 entries for a 60 rider field) and with the expected few people not able to ride due to injury and other commitments 51 riders took to the start line. A good crowd awaited the riders as they rolled down to the start/finish area outside Atkyns Manor in the middle of the village, nicely warmed up by local legend commentator Gerry McGarr.
With 12 laps of the 4.5 mile (flat) circuit ahead of them, it was set to be a fast race – and the riders didn’t disappoint, impressing then crowds with the speeds they completed the laps and the sprints during the course of the race. The intermediate sprints came on laps 3, 6 and 9 – and after both scoring a first and a second place in two of the three sprints the Performance Cycles King of the Sprints prize was eventually shared between Mark Perry of Dream Cycling and Tristran Grigalis of Southampton University RC.
The high pace of the race meant it was hard for a break to go clear, despite the efforts of a number of active riders in the bunch – and it was left to commentator Gerry to pass this information on to the crowd, only to have to tell them minutes later that the breaks had been caught again.
With four laps to go a series break of four riders went clear, in the move was by Gerry’s pre-race favourite Lee Davis (Node4 – Giordana Racing) who was joined by Robert Willcocks (Royal Air Force CC), Jason Gurney (www.twenty3c.co.uk) and Michael Ward (Ride 24/7). The group built up a maximum lead of 38 seconds on the bunch, however with a man missing from the move there was no way the strong team of Dream Cycling were going to let them get too far ahead. As the riders crossed the line for the bell lap, the breakaway’s lead had been cut to just 12 seconds and it was all destined to end in a sprint finish for the growing crowd who were by now coming out of the local pubs to watch the action.
The breakaway was caught with less than two miles to go to the finish, and the resulting lull in speed caused a touch of wheels and a number of riders to go down – including breakaway rider Lee Davis and the current Cotswold League series leader Nic Tilling (Ride 24/7), putting them both out of the race.
On the mass sprint to the finish, Mark Perry (Dream Cycling) just edged out Marc Flay (Dynamic Bikes UK/RPC) with Glenn MacMcMenamin (www.twenty3c.co.uk) crossing the line in third. (Full results below).
The first Cotswold League rider to cross the line was Rory Gilling of promoting club Performance Cycles who scored a maximum 80 points in the series, but with league leader Nic Tilling crashing out on the last lap, the lead in the Cotswold League moves across to him team mate Michael Ward (Ride 24/7).
The race organisers (Performance Cycles) would like to say a HUGE thank you to all the club members, friends and family that gave up their time to make this event a success – not to mention the team from the NEG and MediBike along with all the officials from British Cycling. And a special thank you goes to the organising committee of the South Cerney Street Fair weekend that saw this as a great event to stage in their village and have worked extremely hard to make sure the race happened (including, somehow, managing to get the Highways Agency to sort out the pot holes in the village on the Friday before the race!!).
|Position||Number||First Name||Surname||Club||CCRL Points|
|2||35||Marc||Flay||Dynamic Bicycles UK/RPC|
|4||45||Danny||Fox||RST Racing Team|
|5||44||Robert||Willcocks||Royal Air Force CC|
|6||38||Joe||Fox||MG-Maxifuel Pro Cycling|
|7||48||Tristan||Grigalis||Southampton University RC|
|15||53||Peter||Giddings||Velo Club Walcot|
|17||43||Austyn||Tusler||Norwood Paragon CC|
|18||25||Matthew||Tibbutt||Wightlink, LCM Systems Cycle RT|
|19||60||Jack||Combe||Wyre Forest CRC|
|24||49||Thomas||Bowering||Swindon Cycles Race Academy|
|25||30||Cameron||Foster||Club Corley Cycles|
|32||23||Sam||Baker||Wightlink, LCM Systems Cycle RT|