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Race Reports - 08/05/15

8th May 2015

The last few weeks have mostly been about racing hard against the clock, as the University National Time Trial Championships took place around the country.

The biggest success story was Emma Cockcroft’s bronze medal in the 25 mile TT. Held in very windy conditions near Cambridge, the undulating course suited Emma’s power and smoothness, a 1 hour 2 min, 3rd place effort was a fantastic result in her 1st season racing. The measured effort over the distance was skillfully done in conditions that could have been easy to over-cook things. Other performances on the day – Oscar rode well for 10th place, Sam Barker 29th in a PB 58.59, Bethan 16th.
Elsewhere during the championships season, the 10 mile race, held near Oxford, was again held in windy conditions on a flat ‘out and back’ course. Oscar Hutchings recorded a PB 20.47 for an excellent 8th place, Sam barker 49th. Emma averaged more than 25mph for 23.42 for 5th place, Bethan Stubbs 24th. 
The Team Time Trial was held on a lumpy course near Castle Combe over 23 miles; always a tough event, where pacing and teamwork are vital, the women’s team of Emma, Bethan and Clare Parkin recorded a good 5th place. The men’s team of Oscar, Sam and Jacob Loftus giving it everything for an eventual 6th place.
All in all a very good Championships’ TT season with lots of promise and good performances; top 10’s in these events are hard to come-by, so a series of credible performances all-round.
In the run-up to the Championships, Bethan won the hilly Tavistock Wheelers 25 mile TT, on a course that very much suits her strengths. Josh Jones won the Bristol South 25 mile TT in a 55 min time, a very good early season TT performance with over a minute’s advantage over 2nd place.
In addition to Time Trials, the road race scene resulted in some equally notable performances. In a circuit race at Torbay Velopark, Emma and Alex Sheehan dominated the field, with team tactics working well, Emma broke away mid-race and lapped the whole field, with Alex playing a brilliant teammate and finishing 2nd, great riding. The first 1-2 finish of the year so far. In other races at the same venue, Oscar has managed to finish 3rd on 2 separate occasions, very consistent riding, showing good form.
The Stockbridge RR in Hampshire attracted a good quality field on a wearing-down course. A group of 3 established an early lead, and it was only in the last 20 miles that a small chase group including Josh Jones managed to bridge the gap. In the end, Josh managed a good 4th place, with Andy Feather and Oscar Hutchings both finishing in the bunch.
A busy time awaits, with National Series events for both the men’s and women’s squads, as well as the University Road Race Championships in North Yorkshire, good luck all.