7th June Road Race

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Distance 24 miles, 3 laps of 8 miles. Weather dry warm, sunny, calm. 33 riders.
Handicaps– group one, 4 youth riders off first ; group two 17 riders after 4 minutes ; group three, scratch, 12 riders, after 10 minutes.
By the end of the first lap the youth group had split with Gareth Boyle and Dan Boardman going through the first lap with a 1min 30sec lead over the large second group who were clearly working faster than in the previous race, completing the 8 mile lap in under 21 mins. Scratch were closing  but group two's lead was well over 4 mins. By the end of the second lap there were only two groups remaining and the scratch group had cut the deficit to 2min 45secs. Observers were predicting a close finish but the first group managed to stay away and it was Jonny Beers who sprinted to victory, ahead of Conor Hanna, Ross Blayney, Eric Blayney, Andy Templeton and Philip Downie completing the first six. The scratch group came in 1min 10 secs later, led by Stuart Henry, Anthony Mitchell and Gareth Adamson.
On actual times the first group home covered the 24 miles in 62mins. 20 secs., an average of 23mph. This was three minutes faster than the same group's time at the last race. Speaking to riders afterwards it was confirmed that they rode harder and were better organised this time, with more riders going through. The scratch group completed the 24 miles in 57min 30 secs., an average of 25mph. This was a minute faster than in the previous race but the margin of their improvement was not as much as the first group's.
It was great to see a few old hands back on the club race scene again i.e. Alastair, Lennie and Ross who all proved that when you have class, you never lose it.
Thanks to everyone who rode and thanks to Mark, George, Des, John, Flo and Owen for marshalling. The third and final race of the series is Wed. August 16.

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