Richard Blackmore writes…
I’m sure by now you will have heard / seen that Steve D came 4th again in the National ’50’. Janet and I, plus Steve (Blackmore) went over to give some vocal support to Steve and Chris and Conall Yates were there as well. We gave a yell to Sean Yates who was off at no.28 and lead the leader board for a time with his 1:55:36.
On a windy day times were never going to be fast and where we were watching riders seemed to be going faster uphill with the wind behind them than downhill into the wind! It turned out to be an exciting race with Matt Bottrill leading Hutch by a few seconds at halfway, although these two were in a different class to everyone else.
Steve, off no.130, rode a terrific race in his quest for an RTTC medal and finished with a storming 1:46:02. He seemed to be up on just about everyone except Hutch and Matt who left the final result in doubt right until the last couple of miles. However Hutch pulled out that extra something to beat Matt B by 16 seconds with 1:41:28.
Unfortunately for Steve, no less a rider than Andy Wilkinson sneaked ahead of him finishing in 1:45:13. Bizarrely, in an exact repeat of last year, Wilko was also in the same age category as Steve so he won both the bronze and the 45 to 49 cat. medals, whereas Steve in 4th place had to watch while Julian Jenkinson, in 5th place took the 40 to 44 cat. medal!
Another great result for the Club was Robin Parker competing in the LRVC National Criterium Championships at Hog Hill, Redbridge and trying out his new bike. Robin escaped the pack with 1 other rider with a few laps to go, to be joined shortly after by another. The 3 then just managed to stay clear of the bunch in the final sprint and Robin, by only half a wheel, was just pipped to the post and finished in the silver medal position.
On Saturday morning the Horsham 10 mile time trial was very much a Yates family affair with Conall winning the event by just 4 seconds in 20:49 and Sean coming 4th with 21:13. Grinstead’s Chris Yates, still improving, came a very creditable 11th with 22:38.
On Sunday Mike A, Kev B and Ben H all rode in the SCCU 50 which was a bit of a struggle in the wind.