Racing returned to Ixworth again on May Bank Holiday, with fine spring weather – until the last 5 minutes of the final race, when the heavans opened. West Suffolk Wheelers put on the familiar 6 race program, starting with Men’s Category 4 races where the home club was represented by Stephen Brook (finishing 27th), Jason Fowler (25th) and Martin Brown (14th). UEA Cycling Club finished 1st and 2nd with Edward Howard and David Jacobs, with David Hebblethwaite from Orwell Velo 3rd.
Mujtaba Taimur from VC Londres was the clear winner in the Under 12 Boys race, followed by Isaac Barral from Team Milton Keynes and James Clarke from Colchester Rovers. Elizabeth Whall from Colchester Rovers was the leading girl (and 3rd overall), followed by Liberty Missenden and Jennifer Clarke from Tuxford Clarion CC
The 3rd race, combining Vet 50 men with the Women 2/3/4 Category riders, saw the biggest field of the day. Georgia Lancaster of Brother UK-Orientation Marketing was the leading woman, closely followed by local rider Mia Rutterford of Tofauti Everyone Active, then Rebekah Nash from Jadan Vive le Velo Glasdon. WSW were represented by Laura Prime (17th) and Megan Free (19th). In the men’s race, Barry McDonald of Tactic Sport UK Race Team took the win, followed by Leigh Matthews of Ride Revolution Coaching and former Ixworth champion Mike Smith. Malcolm Macfarlane of WSW came home in 14th.
The Under 14 race got off to a rapid start, with George Collins (Velo Schils – Interbike RT) attacking the moment the lead motorbike pulled away. George quickly pulled out a circa 8 second lead, but effective teamwork from Arthur Steer (Cycling Club Hackney), Peggy Knox (Vicious Velo) and Harvey Woodroffe (Ely & District CC) saw them bring him back. George sat in for the remaining laps before launching another attack up the High Street on the final lap, going clear to take the win from Arthur and Peggy (3rd overall, and 1st girl). Esmee Bone (Welwyn Wheelers CC) was 2nd girl, followed by Cecilia Linden (Team Milton Keynes).
The Under 16 saw a stiff battle between Thomas Lewis (Ely & District CC), Oskar Everett (Orwell Velo) and William Horspool (Wisbech Wheelers); they went clear early on and each launched attacks. Lewis pulled clear of Everett, and Horspool lost contact after overcooking the corner exiting onto the High Street, and being saved by the crash mats against the barriers. Samuel Brook (West Suffolk Wheelers) was riding strongly in 4th before crashing out on the corner entering Commister Lane. The race finished with Lewis as the winner, followed by Everett and Horspool, followed by Thomas Fincham (Cambridge Junior CC) and Edith Smith (Stonham Barns Park – SYRT).
Callum Laborde (Wheelbase CabTech Castelli) was the rider to beat in the Men’s 2/3/4 Category, and rode a canny race – attacking to thin out the field, then sitting in and letting others follow the moves. He always looked in control, and pulled clear on the final lap to take the win, even after a downpour for the last few minutes of the race. Matthew Wilson (Ride Revolution Coaching) finished 2nd, with Thomas Timberlake (Trash Mile) in 3rd. Local rider Kieran Jarvis (Brother UK-Orientation Marketing) finished 5th, with Andrew Braithwaite (WSW) in 20th and Harley Gregory (WSW) having to withdraw with a puncture.
The next event promoted by West Suffolk Wheelers will be our Grass Track race meeting at Fornham All Saints on Sunday 25th June. Entries are open now on the British Cycling website.