The twelfth round of the Easter Region Cyclo Cross League took place at Phoenix Bike Park at Kentford last Sunday in conditions which changed significantly through the day with rock-hard frozen ground for the early races for youngsters, gradually thawing as the day went on, resulting in slippery mud for the adult races.
West Suffolk riders claimed two overall victories, with Richard Muchmore leading the 50+ race from whistle to flag, and Harley Gregory doing likewise in the Under-12 race.
Other young riders doing well were Sam Brook, 7th in the U10, Caris Grgeory 13th and best U8, Oliver Griggs 24th in the U16 with Martha Lebentz 29th and 3rd girl.
Paul Watson used his mountain bike experience on the spectacular course to claim 3rd in the 50+ race, just overhauled by Dave Copland from Ipswich for 2nd, with Mike Bowen 7th, Peter Golding 15th (3rd 60+), Ian Mortlock 35th, David Griggs 41st and Paul Sawyer 48th.
Six local riders contested the 40+ race, with Matt Denny best of the bunch in 17th, with Matt Shingleton 24th, Richard Stiff 26th, Stephen King 31st, Darren Sharman 45th and Stephen Brook 48th.
The last race of the day was the Open Race, with one hour of racing in the muddiest conditions that saw no less than 10 retirements.
Harry Shingleton continues to improve with 24th place (6th Junior), Clement Wallace 39th and Nick Rush 44th.
There is now a lull in the series, but three more events to come, the next one being at Trinity Park, Ipswich on New Year’s Day.
* The weekend before last saw the wintry weather conditions play a big part in the Eastern Region Cyclo Cross event at Chantry Park Ipswich, organised by Stowmarket CC.
Not only were the ground conditions very challenging with thick snow and slushy mud the order of the day, but there were unsurprisingly depleted fields in most races, giving those hardy souls that did race the chance of improved positions and enhanced league points.
Harry Shingleton scored his best result to date in the Open Race, with a very creditable 10th overall, and second Junior, with Clement Wallace 17th in that race.
West Suffolk Wheelers gained two victories with Harley Gregory racing to his third win of the season in the Under-12s, and Peter Golding was best Over-60 and 6th overall in the 50+ race. David Griggs also achieved his best result so far in this race with an 18th placing, ahead of Barry Denny 24th and Paul Sawyer 26th.
Matt Denny made a meteoric start in the 40+ race, but faded, whilst Matt Shingleton recovered from a poor first lap by using his exceptional running skills on every lap on the uphill double-hurdle part of the course to gain 10th, whilst Stephen King came home 16th, Stephen Brook 21st and Giles Prime 22nd.
Laura Brown continued to make good progress with 5th in the Women’s race, and Sam Brook rode well to 4th in the Under-10s, whilst Caris Gregory reluctantly retired from the Under 8 section.