Thrills and spills for riders as they tackle forest trails at Thetford
PUBLISHED: 15:44 08 August 2014 | UPDATED: 15:44 08 August 2014
James or Jones? The result of the Elite race was in doubt right to the end of the Thetford Forest round of the Mud Sweat and Gears MTB series.
Stephen James of the Brockford-based Renvale team and under 23 star Richard Jones were soon well clear of the field with near-vet James wondering how he would fare in a showdown with his young rival.
Both were aware that the first into the short singletrack sector just before the finish would likely win. As the crucial point approached James went wide to get round a cluster of lapped riders only to find Jones slipping though on the inside.
However in a do or die effort James managed to lead into the narrows and took the win by three seconds.
Laura Sampson had a clear win in the women’s race although 15 year-old Sophie Wright made an impression by riding the full elite women’s distance and keeping within a minute of Sampson all the way.
The course, in the Grimes Graves area was described as “fast, rolling – pure power” by Josh Murad the young EHF rider from Thetford who was third in category
Honington man Richard Muchmore won the veteran’s race after a race-long duel with Robert Jackson. Paddy Atkinson won the Juniors and fellow Ipswich youngster Troy Wingar (GRT) was second in the Juveniles.
Russell Hampton (Athlonsport) won the 89 mile Glendene road race on a Great Saling based course in which a break of ten established a secure lead, followed by a chasing group of similar size.
Crosswinds split larger groups in a race which saw a welcome return to form of Richardsons/Trek rider Lloyd Chapman, who took third spot.
StradaSport’s Summer Road Race on the Shotesham circuit featured a brave lone break by Matthew Carter of VeloSchils but eventually came down to a battle between London rider George Georgallides and Luke Moseley (Climb on Bikes).
Passing Stoke Holy Cross church for the last time, Moseley went for a long one – but it was Georgallides who prevailed on the final climb to the finish on Skeets Hill where he had four seconds in hand over Moseley and a further five over third-placed Ben Locke from VC Braintree
There was an outstanding result for Newmarket Junior Lewis Stevens who took second place in a National Junior Road Series counting event near Bath.
David McGaw (Cambridge CC) won the Stowmarket & District 10 on the Wickham Market by-pass in 20:24 with second place going to a personal best effort from Simon Hance (Ipswich BC, 21:46).
Ant Birt (IBC) and Sean Taylor (RAF) tied for third on 22:17 on a day when there was a headwind on the uphill drag to the turn but a fast blast back over the resurfaced return leg.
There were fast times in the ECCA 10 on the Newmarket bypass with Chelmsford rider Julia Freeman recording 21:58 and Ann Shuttleworth (Chelmer CC) 23:35, while Stowmarket & District’s Jack Sears was frustratingly close to 30 mph on 20:05. Jason Bouttell (VeloVelocity, 50:37) was ninth out of 117 finishers in the national 25 mile championship in the Lake District which was won by Matt Bottrill in 48:15.
West Suffolk Wheeler Trish Goulden rode the entirely separate women’s championship at Goostrey taking 33rd spot with 1:05:28.