Former road professional Dan Fleeman (Cycleshack) rode himself to victory at Pitcher Oak Woods, organised by Redditch Road and Path Cycling Club.
However, a fast charging Darren Atkins (Team Jewson) kept picking up pace after a staggered start. Atkins who started a minute back, picked his way through the senior field to finish second senior and first vet 40+.
Teammate Steve Knight was second vet 40+ after also picking his way through the senior field. Knight finished third Senior. Joe Fox (Rapha Condor Cycle Club) finished fourth senior and first senior under 23 after a battle with Tom Payton (Islabikes).
With a different format set for the 2012/2013 season, race 3 saw the juniors battle it out with the vet 50+’s. First rider home was Solihull CC’s Jack Ravenscroft ahead of a late charging Chris Welburn (Cycleshack). Third junior was Harrison Webb (Malvern Cyclesport). In the vet 50+ field, it was Mick Davies who took the honours ahead of Stourbridge CC’s Kevin Payton.
The women’s field was contested by two prolific riders. First to bring it home was Beth Crumpton (Scott Contessa Epic) ahead of Hannah Payton (Kinesis Morvelo Project). Beth recently came fifth at the UCI Mountain Bike Cross-Country World Championships in the junior woman’s category. Beth clearly using that form to bring her to victory in the series’ opening round.