Whilst there were no wins for Ilkley Cycling Club last week there was still plenty of racers in action and some promising performances.
In closed circuit racing, Alba Rosa CC promoted their latest youth event , and the Ilkley placings were: U12s 7th Alfie Robinson, U14s 5th Joe Turnbull, U16s 5th Seb Cliffe. Over the Lancashire border in the CDPP 3/4 category event , Michael Strange came 13th.
Round 5 of the Summer Cyclocross season took place at Thornes Park Ossett on a hot dry night. The course consisted of a contrasting mix of fast turns around the neatly mowed football fields and deft single track through thigh high grass, with a notable leg sapping 30% ascent up the side of Roundwood Coal mine. With the front of the race repeating the hill effort 8 times, it was the defining feature of the course and quickly separated out the best from the rest. Ilkley CC Stefan Macina (Although racing for the Aurelius Cycles team)came a notable 2nd from the 105 starters, followed by Arthur Wilson 18th, Jason Bishop 27th, John McManus 68th.
The latest event in the veterans Percy Stallard UK national road race series was The Tour of the Wolds held in North Lincolnshire. The fifty mile event finishing at the top of a two mile uphill section which was tackled six times during the event. Ilkley had a team of four riders in the 50-59 age race, which was made up of a large field drawn from all over the country. Tim Walton, Peter Kettleborough and Ged Millward were all in the age 50-54 sub section wearing yellow numbers and Neil Rollins in the 55-59 age , wearing orange numbers to signify the different age categories in the race.
From the gun it was a fiery affair with constant attacks, especially on the hill, before eventually a significant break gained ground on the peloton. On the final lap the breakaway started to fragment and the bunch chased sporadically and it became obvious to the Ilkley riders that Neil Rollins was looking in the best situation to get a high placing in the 55-59s.
However on the final climb a number of riders made a last ditch effort to break clear of the bunch and overhaul some of the weakening breakaway riders who were clawing their way up the final drag to the line. Teammate, Millward, covered the gap with Rollins in his slipstream and they forced their way through the bunch in order lead Neil out for the final sprint. However their progress was delayed when two of the leading riders in the bunch collided as the sprint started causing the Ilkley riders to brake, swerve and have to build up their speed again, passing riders on their way to the line and Neil Rollins ending up 5th in his category.
This was also a landmark event for Tim Walton who received congratulations all round. After much hard work, training and race practice this event was his first finish in the main bunch and a testament to the improvements he has made over the last few years in this cruel sport.
Pics. Ilkley veterans, Rollins, Walton, Kettleborough, Millward. Peter Kettleborough leads the bunch chasing a breakaway. Ged Millward takes the corner at the bottom of the long climb.