Over 75 riders enjoyed a full day of great, incident free racing at the Swinnerton Cycles British Cycling National Tandem Sprint Championship & Youth Midland Region Omnium Round.
A packed programme of 50 events and heats contained a mixture of youth and experience with 18 riders in the exciting tandem sprint, along with stars of the future in the youth races.
The day contained two main events - the National Tandem Sprint Championship with many former Olympic gold medallists and a round of the British Cycling Midland Youth Omnium series. This has six gender and age categories of youth riders ,competing over 5 sprint and endurance events, to find the best riders on the day.
New tandem pairing of Paralympic gold medallist Craig Maclean (Liverpool Mercury – Dolan) and European junior champion Matthew Rotheram (Sportcity Velo) won the 2013 British Cycling National Tandem Sprint.
The pairing qualified the fastest, won through the rounds and semi finals, to beat silver medallists Neil Fachie (Ythan CC) and Pete Mitchell (Performance Cycle Coaching) 2-0 in the best of three rides.
Peter Boyd and David Heald (VC St Raphael) beat Ben Elliot (VC St Raphael) and John Saysell 2-0 to win the minor final for bronze and forth. Both Boyd and Saysell are in there 25th season of tandem sprinting, showing a mixture of youth and experience in the event..
It was also great to see nine tandems competing this year, with great support from the Great Britain Para-cycling Team and four female tandem pairings competing. Best of the ladies was Helen Scott (Performance Cycle Coaching) and Sophie Thornhill (Sportcity Velo).
The crowds were treated to a master class of close, fast and exciting tandem riding from all the riders.
A field of 12 under 16 boys battled over the five Omnium events, with some fast and furious racing from the moment the racing started. Jack Escritt (Velocity WD-40) was the top rider on the day, taking a well deserved win from Joel Partington (Sportcity Velo) . All the riders are to be commended for an excellent display of riding which was clearly ahead of their years, displaying plenty of promise for their future within the sport.
Lucy Shaw (Solihull CC) gave a consistent display of Omnium riding in the under 16 girls scratch, points, elimination, Keirin and 800m time trial. The event was a mix of sprint versus endurance, with Shaw coming out on top over U16 national sprint champion Sophie Capewell (Lichfield City CC).
Benjamin Hardwick (Wolverhampton Wheelers) showed he had put in some hard training over winter. He gave a dominant display of riding in the scratch, points, elimination, and time trial winning three events to win the under 14 boys category. Harry Yates (Lichfield City CC) rode consistently to take second place from Charlie Cox (Lichfield City CC).
It's always great to see a field of under 12 riders racing and this was no exception. These stars of the future battled away spinning little gears and all had big smiles on their faces. Lewis Askey (Lichfield City CC) came out on top with five wins in five races to score the lowest possible score. Whilst rider Daniel Cooper (Lichfield City CC) rode consistently in second, moving up the rankings to take a fine second place overall from local rider Alex Coates (Lyme Racing Club) in third.
There were five under 10 and 8 year old riders, with some close fought racing, Ben Askey (Lichfield City CC) came out on top on the day winning all five events. Connor Smith piped local rider Sam Hall Lyme RC to second place in a close fought battle.
We would like to thank our sponsor Swinnertoncycles.co.uk , British Cycling, all the helpers, officials, parents and riders for supporting the event and helping make a great day of racing.
Racing is held at Newcastle under Lyme Track every Thursday from 6.00pm for freewheelers and 7.15pm for the main track league, with training sessions every Monday, Tuesday and Friday evening for Freewheelers. See www.newcastletrack.co.uk for more information and full results.