The scurrilous rumours circulating in the peloton before the race that The Gos and I had dug up the lane leading towards Mt MoFo to ensure the dreaded climb was excluded from tonight’s course were, well, scurrilous and unfounded. However, this was only because we hadn’t thought of it…
The abridged course, navigating the newly namely 4 Ashes climb, (it was ‘2’ less steep than 6 Ashes – thank you John Cooper for that) still provided a challenging drag for the big boned rider but it wasn’t big enough to split things up like Mt MoFo can.
The evening saw less than a full complement of Wrekinsporters but our merry bunch included Ade ‘White Lines’ Billington, Karen and John, New John and me. Forgive me if I’ve missed anybody, it’s still a bit of a blur…
There were four groups this evening, imaginatively named groups 1,2,3 and yes, you’ve guessed it, 4. The race included some riders who had competed in the Lincoln GP last weekend but excluded a few who were preparing for an assault on the Division Champs at the weekend (good luck guys) so it was always going to be quick.
Unfortunately lap 1 was marred by a crash in G2 which left a number of riders on the deck and a couple of walking wounded. I’m told 2 guys are on their way to hospital so we wish them a speedy recovery. The organisers got to grips with things quickly as they always do – top work again to Dave Goring and the team. Dave, who is responsible for handicapping the event, is looking younger and slimmer every week. Charming chap…
The pace was pretty frantic. I saw some really strong riding from the usual suspects in my group with Mark Fenn (Paramount), Tim Jones (MSW) and Andy Jones (Wolverhampton Wheelers) amongst them.
6 laps of the shorter course saw G3 get hold of G2 on lap 3 and G1 shortly afterwards. The fourth group came through with a lap and a half left so it all came together for the finish. Frankly, I’ve seen the finish of this course more often in photographs than in real life, so seldom do I actually manage to hang in on Mt MoFo. However, the flat course meant I was in there at the end (ish) New John was up there, White Lines a little behind (no puns please…) then Karen and John, Karen working hard to keep that jersey.
Karen was resplendent in the pink jersey for leading the women’s ranking. It’s a great effort – she even had matching shoes for the evening but had, apparently, had drawn the line at pink shorts. Fair play indeed.
Fair play also to the organisers for managing to put the race on in light of the road works. Shuffling police consents and HQ’s at the last minute is above and beyond so, thanks to those guys.
I’m afraid I’ve no idea who won (I’ve never claimed these reports were useful) but I guarantee it wouldn’t have been one of my big boned riding mates. The heavens opened just as we rolled it to pick up our licences. Perfect timing.
More next week, Knighton I think….