A bumper series of off-road cycle races faced West Suffolk Wheelers and Triathlon Club over the weekend, with club members enjoying tough racing at Trinity Park, Ipswich in the final round of the Easter Cyclocross League and at Brandon in the penultimate round of Thetford Winter Series MTB league.
Competition at Trinity Park was fierce with Sophie Griggs coming 14th in the under-10 race, which was enough for a well-deserved gold in her under-8 girl category.
Barry Denny finished in 32nd spot in the combined men’s over-50s and women’s race, cementing his third place in the men’s over-60s overall standings.
In the same race, Peter Golding finished 15th which earned him a fine 12th overall in the men’s over-50s in his debut cyclocross season.
A final race debut for Darren Sharman saw him come 25th in the senior event, while in the men’s 40-49 race Mike Bowen was top placed Wheeler (second), followed by Matt Shingleton (22nd), Richard Stiff (27th), Stu Grand (29th) and an injured Giles Prime (54th).
In the youth race, Thomas Macro (29th) just pipped Harry Shingleton (30th) across the line, while Fraser Elsworth did not finish.
Both Charlie Knowler (ninth) and Oliver Griggs (14th) will be pleased with their efforts in the under-12s.
The team itself finished a creditable ninth overall, and special mention to Mike Bowen (sixth overall in the men’s 40-49 category), mother-and-son duo of Nicole Gregory (ninth overall woman) and Harley (fifth overall in the under-10s).
n A generally fast but deceptively greasy and at times still icy surface caused several individual, and spectacular group crashes at Sunday’s Thetford Winter Series Mountain Bike Race at Fire Road 6, near Brandon.
Again, and in only her second ever MTB race, Wheeler Sarah Wells carried all before her in the Women’s four-hour race.
Despite a heavy fall herself on one of the course’s two deep bomb holes, she made up for lost time to finish first, completing eight of the 10km loops in four hours, 24 minutes and two seconds.
Also in the same time category, Malcolm Borg’s winter training regime continues to pay dividends in the male 18-39 race with a fine ninth (nine laps in 4hrs 34mins 28secs).
In the four hour veteran male race, Malcolm MacFarlane finished 17th (eight laps in 4.30.11) and Adam Baker 30th (five laps in 2.36.51).
In the male vets two-hour race, both Paul Watson and Darren Baker took a break from cyclo cross, but with differing results.
Watson completed five laps in 2.25.06 to finish 14th, while Baker struggled for 62nd, with four laps in 2.26.25.
Gritty performances from the remainder of the Wheelers’ 11-strong contingent came in the one-hour race, with commendable efforts from Mandy Bunn (sixth woman with two laps in 1.14.19), and in the men’s race Dick Lines came 17th (two laps in 1.08.07), son Robin 19th (two laps in 1.09.31), Will Smith 24th (two laps in 1.11.30) and Richard Holland Jones 36th (two laps in 1.23.54).