Report: White Rose Youth League R3

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White Rose Youth League - Bradford Round 3

Event: 8th June 2011
Promoted by: Leeds Mercury CC
Venue: Richard Dunn Sports Centre
Report: John Cullaigh
Event Details

Rain Delays Start But Didn't Dampen Spirits

Despite a prolonged cloudburst forcing the E, D and C cats Time Trials to be abandoned, racing was eventually able to start at the 3rd Bradford meeting of the White Rose Youth League last week and riders responded with some exciting performances throughout the evening.

First race was the 5 lap combined U8's and U10's and by the end of the first lap a breakaway group of 5 riders had created an impressive lead on the rest of the field. U10 Billy Lazenby (East Bradford) dominated this group and looked increasingly comfortable. He sealed his victory with a fine sprint up the finishing straight from Adam Fortune and Henry Hollyman (both KCA) who did their fair share at the front. Hollyman is looking better every week and has clearly signalled a return to form. Sam Watson also rode a good ride to get 4th.

Ava Oxley (Wakefield Junior Tri) and Ella Lazenby (East Bradford) were the two U10 girls first home with a fine display of disciplined riding. Both finished very strongly from Lucy Whearty (Pedalsport) who also displayed her focussed approach despite the conditions. Nathan Fortune (Pedalsport) was the first U8 boy to finish, with Elphina Waterman (KCA) and Kate Dickinson (Huddersfield Star Wheelers) finishing 1st and 2nd in the U8 girls.

In the 10 lap U12 boys it was Thomas Humphrey (Wakefield Junior Tri) who stole the show with a superb display of attacking riding from the start. He is currently a fine example of a maturing young rider who has found his way into the positive spiral of confidence, endeavour and performance. Brad Dransfield (NMYS) and Jacob Feetham (Wakefield Junior Tri) worked very well together trying to chase Humphrey down and provided an exciting sprint finish in which Dransfield clinched 2nd place in the last few metres.

Hannah Banks (East Bradford) was the very impressive winner in the U12 girls, but many of us are waiting for the Byram girls, Lucy and Erica (Holme Valley Wheelers) to put her under serious examination any meet soon. They are having an increasingly successful season and rode very co-operatively to get a very well deserved 2nd and 3rd place.

In the U14 boys race brother Lewis Byram (Holme Valley Wheelers) also continued his excellent season with a fine display of determined riding up against Joey Walker (RST Racing Team) and Chris Barnes (Seacroft Wheelers). Walker's intelligent and attacking riding this season has made him a favourite with the knowledgeable White Rose crowd and he did not disappoint. From the start he was off the front shaking up the field but keeping a canny eye on both Byram and Barnes. In their turn they stayed with him and did their share at the front for the whole 15 laps. With just 120 metres to go Walker launched his attack from the back and looked to be away, but Barnes responded with a burst of speed that saw him almost draw level. Walker replied immediately with faster legs and drew away in the last 30 metres to take the win. Byram finished a very close 3rd with a fine reply up the finishing straight.

In the girls U14's Abby Mae Parkinson (Aire Valley RT) put in another controlled performance to take first place in worsening conditions. Knowing a sprint finish is not yet her forte, she steadily pulled away from Amira Mellor (Holme Valley Wheelers), who found herself in no-man's-land on a number of occasions but kept her head down and legs spinning to finish 2nd . Bronwen Owen (Planet X) finishsed strongly in the last lap to take 3rd.

Lauren and Jessica O'Brien (Wakefield Junior Tri) worked very well together for 24 laps to comfortably finish 1st and 2nd in the U16 girls. From the outset they steadily pulled away from ever improving Caitlin Tromans (East Bradford CC), who paced herself very intelligently in the rapidly worsening conditions to finish a very creditable 3rd.

In the U16 boys the usual suspects of Jacob Scott, Leon Gledhill (both Planet X), Gabz Cullaigh (Aire Valley RT), Leon Taylor-Woodhouse (Holme Valley Wheelers) and Jack Duffy (East Bradford) immediately set a blistering pace in their race and broke away from the rest of the field. This time all eyes were on Jack Duffy who two weeks ago launched a very cheeky attack 6 laps from home and managed to stay out in front to record his first win of the series. Most impressive!

However, this time Jacob Scott had very different ideas and launched a telling attack after 8 laps, having launched a few bluffs earlier on. By the time the rest of the group realised he was serious they were half a lap behind and obviously reluctant to commit to a chase down in worsening conditions. With two laps to go Scott was just 20 metres off lapping this group thus the race was for 2nd, 3rd and 4th between Gledhill, Cullaigh and Taylor-Woodhouse. In a fantastic sprint finish Gledhill just edged in front of Cullaigh to get 2nd and Taylor-Woodhouse hung on to take 4th.

Many thanks to all riders for some fantastic performances under such trying conditions, and to Mandy Parker, Paul Banks and the many volunteers who made the event such a worthwhile evening for everyone.

British Cycling would like to thank the organising team, officials and everyone else who helped promote this event. Our sport could not exist without the hundreds of people, many of them unpaid volunteers, who put in many hours of hard work running events, activities and clubs.