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Mein and Inglis storm to back-to-back cross-country wins at Margam Park

Mein and Inglis storm to back-to-back cross-country wins at Margam Park

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Thomas Mein and Grace Inglis stormed to back-to-back wins in the second round of the National Cross-country Series at a sunny Margam Park.

Short Track

Thomas Mein (Hope) kicked the weekend off with a bang to win the elite open race. The flat, fast track made for exciting racing, with riders working together until Mein kicked with two laps to go. The Hope rider took the solo win with his arms aloft after a fantastic effort, while the chasing bunch exploded behind. Juniors Dec Oldham (Hope) and Billy Reed (XCOMTB.com Race Team) rounded off the podium after strong performances to the finish.

Grace Inglis showed her power in the women’s race, firing off the start line to lead solo from start to finish, while Ruby James (Hope) and Eilish Gilbert (Saint Piran) battled for second and third place.

Thomas Mein racing to victory

It was a close battle in the youth open race, with Alarik Knox (Verulam) leading from the off, before Jacob Mauger (Jersey Youth Cycling) overtook. In the later stages of the race, Luca Hill (BW Cycling) had a second wind and powered past Mauger to seize the final win, followed by Mauger and Knox on the podium.

Heidi Roscoe (CTW Racing) won comfortably in the women’s race, but the charge for second saw Freya Mowbray (Scotia Offroad Race Team) just beat off Orla White (Dartmoor Velo).

Paul Oldham (Hope) took his second win of the series in the open veteran short track race, leading home Tom Colley (Chase Racing) to second, while a very happy Will Hutchins (05/03) pinched third after a great tussle with Ross Duffield (Cwmcarn Paragon).

In the women’s equivalent, Rowena Duffield (Cwmcarn Paragon) and Natalie Smith (Rotor) were neck-and-neck until the closing stages of the race until Duffield managed to get a couple of bike lengths ahead.

Olympic

Elite

Thomas Mein (Hope) took his second win of the weekend and also his second win in the Olympic category for the series in the elite open race.

As the race got underway, Jason Bouttell (Destination Bike RT) took the lead with Mein hot on his wheel, with the pair opening up a sizable gap. Mein kicked on the final lap, and as he put it, “gave it a go on the climb, got a gap and then suffered to the finish” for the double win.

Bouttell hung on for second still three minutes clear of the pack, while Simon Wyllie (Spectra Racing) looked to take a comfortable third, until a fast finishing James Swadling (Pedal Power Loughborough) saw a sprint to the line, with Wyllie taking the third spot. Luke Peyton (Four4th) took the final spot on the podium.

In the elite women’s race, Grace Inglis repeated her short track tactics by firing off the start line. Battling the heat, Inglis looked unfazed and continued to power solo all the way to the finish, opening up a huge gap on the rest of the field.

Holly MacMahon (Southborough & District Wheelers) rode the majority of the race on her own to finish in second place, but the race behind her for third was more of a battle. Riders swapped and changed positions almost every lap and it was only on the final lap any real prediction could be made. A delighted Eilish Gilbert (Saint Piran) took third, her second of the weekend, ahead of Irish champion Caoimhe May and Ruby James (Hope).

Junior

Junior

Declan Oldham (Hope) and Alex Hart (Grity) dominated the junior open race, escaping from the rest of the field and mixing it up with the elite race in front of them.

Both riders crashed on the last descent, but were able to continue with Oldham managing to edge out Hart to take his first national victory.

Behind them, there was a scramble for the remaining podium spots, with Ben Coppola (SCOTT Pioneer DJ) taking third ahead of Freddie Dixon (Hope) and Will Curphy (Team RL360 Isle of Man).

With four of the junior riders away for the UEC European Mountain Bike Championships in Romania, the junior women’s race was wide open.

Harriette Taylor (Xcomtb.com Race Team) took an early lead, but had to settle for second behind Tulsi Bakrania (Montezuma's Race Team) who had very fast second and third laps.

Layla Bradbrook (Team Enable MI Racing) looked delighted with her third place, while Ellie Mitchinson (Montezuma's Race Team) and Faye Williams (Rotor) completed the podium spots.

Battle for the line

Youth and juvenile races

Arthur Limb (Matlock) had a very strong race in the open youth class to take the win ahead of Luke Trafford (Shibden), while Alarik Knox (Verulam) fought off Jacob Mauger (Jersey Youth Cycling) to in a sprint finish for third and fourth.

After a close first lap, Aelwen Davies (Torq) escaped off the front to take a commanding win in the female youth category. Daisy Wilkinson (Scotia Offroad Race Team) brought home the rest of the field ahead of Maizie Harper (Pine Sport).

A great battle unfolded in the juvenile open race with Zach Hutchinson (Clifton) taking the win this round. Behind him, a crash cost Ben Whitehouse (RR23 - runandride.co.uk) valuable time in his chase and he had to settle for second. A sprint finish saw Daniel Minay (Team RL360 Isle of Man) just beat Zach Smith (Guernsey Velo Club (LBG)) to the line for third.

Meanwhile in the female category, a broken chain for Olivia Poole (Deeside) on the start line meant the race was wide open. Harriet Butcher (Lee Valley Youth Cycling Club) took an early lead but had to settle for second place behind Aoife Scawn (Dartmoor Velo) with Lauren Fox (Mid Devon) finishing third.

Veterans race

Veterans

Paul Oldham (Hope) had hoped to take his second win of the weekend, and had a clear lead in the open veterans category until a mechanical on the far side of the course meant his race was over. Adrian Lansley (pedalon.co.uk), who had been chasing Oldham hard, had a clear run to the line for his first win this season. Phil Holwell (www.Zepnat.com RT) stayed ahead of Alan Gunner (Verulam) for second.
In the women’s race, it was a repeat of the short track with Rowena Duffield (Cwmcarn Paragon) and Natalie Smith (Rotor) taking the one and two. Local girl Suzie Warren (Cardiff Ajax CC) not only took third place but advised on Welsh pronunciation all weekend!

In the grand veterans open category, Nick Craig (SCOTT Pioneer DJ) and Marc Chamberlain (TY Cycles Race Team) led from the start, escaping from the bunch and working their way through the younger vets in front. It was a fast and furious battle, but Craig managed to break ahead for the win in the final stages of the race. Behind them, Dougie Cameron led the field home.

In the women’s race Helen Pattinson (Montezuma's Race Team) dominated the race with last round’s winner Julie De Leeuw coming second ahead of Christina Peyton.

A very happy Grant Johnson won the super veteran open category in his Welsh champion jersey. Andy Weaving (TY Cycles Race Team) forced a gap on Mark Pilcher (Numplumz Mountainbikers) to take second, while Carolyn Speirs (Grity) led from start to finish in the women’s race.

Margam Park

Expert

Al Griffin (Addform - Vive le Velo) went one better this round to take the win in the expert open class. Behind him, the chasers changed position regularly, but Adam Potter took second place, closing in rapidly on Griffin on the last lap. Alan Duncan (Sherwood Pines Cycles Forme) came third.

In the combined sport and expert women’s category, Alderney Baker (Team Empella) started at the back of the grid but was soon at the front to dominate the race with a great ride. Rachel Bennet came a comfortable second with Megan Bettles (Numplumz Mountainbikers) in third.

Sport and fun races

Ollie Mant had a great ride in the open sport race, finishing nearly five minutes ahead of the rest of the field. Ben Vangasse (BW Cycling) brought home the rest of the field for second as Jordan Peacock (Ride Revolution Coaching) finished in third.

Thomas Mackrell took the win in the open fun race. Behind him Ben Hext (One Planet Adventure) and Ross Duffield (Cwmcarn Paragon) had a good battle for second and third. In the women’s race, Megan Mowbray won ahead of last round’s winner Sarah Broadhead with local rider Emma Davies (Port Talbot Wheelers) rounding off the podium.

You can still enter the next round of the National Cross-country Series on 1-2 June at Cannock Chase here.

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