Kinross CC welcomed riders from across Scotland to the excellent closed road circuit at Fife Cycle Park to crown several new champions.
The first races of the day got underway in brutal conditions with strong winds and sharp showers making the going tough for the younger riders as they negotiated many fast, frenzied laps around variations of the challenging 1.6km circuit.
Youth C - Murray and Blackburn take the first titles of the day.
The Youth C race saw a high octane charge in the blustery conditions around the course with Innes McDonald ( Edinburgh RC) leading from the start. The race quickly settled down to a core of eight riders. Thick in the action was Arabella Blackburn ( Deeside Thistle) keeping a close eye on McDonald who drove the majority of the race from the front. After 25mins it came down to a sprint with Adam Murray (East Kilbride RC) taking the win, closely followed by Arabella, securing her victory in the Youth C girl’s race, narrowly over Erin Boothman (East Kilbride RC). After a strong race McDonald consoled himself with 4th over the line and runner up spot in the Youth C boys race.
Youth B - Thompson keeps the pace high
The U14 boys blasted off the line in customary fashion, with Jamie Thompson (Johnstone Wheelers CC) forcing the pace so hard in the early laps that by time the race settled down the field was well strung out over the 1.6km course. Pockets of riders battled the ever strengthening winds and driving rain showers. It certainly wasn’t a day to go solo and at the head of the race a group of ten quickly formed with attacks coming thick and fast, but nothing sticking.
Constant surges in pace saw two riders dropping off leaving just eight contenders leading to the inevitable bunch kick that saw Jamie Thompson (Johnstone Wheelers CC) secure the win ahead of Calum Moir (Welwyn Wheelers CC) and Corey Whiteford (Lanark RT)
Youth A & B Girls
The opening laps of the U16 & U14 Girls race unfolded in a moderately paced game of cat and mouse. The wind was so high only a handful of riders attempted to get away, but slowly whittled the main group down to 12 riders with a good mix of U14 and U16 riders. Evie White (Deeside Thistle CC) kept up the attacks, but Peebles riders Emily Carrick-Anderson and Christina McGorum kept her in check. With two laps to go Erin Murphy ( Deeside Thistle CC) made her move. Her team mate White controlled the pace at the front of the field and Murphy quickly opened up a 9 second advantage. Sensing the danger Imani Pereira-James (East Kilbride RC) quickly shut the gap down and it was a six rider sprint to the finish, with Kirsty Johnson ( Edinburgh RC) kicking for the U16 win, leaving Imani Pereira-James to pick up second and Elidh Shaw (Edinburgh RC) edging out Morven Yeoman (East Kilbride RC) for third. Emily Carrick-Anderson ( Peebles CC) sprinted to 5th overall to take the the U14 win from Isla McCutcheon (Johnstone Wheelers CC) and Evie White took 3rd.
Youth A - Determined Kain takes the title
A high voltage pace was set from the start in the U16 boys race with Fraser Gault (Aberdeen Wheelers CC) quickly spreading out the field. After a couple of laps of concertina action the race settled into a rhythm with an inevitable flurry of solo attacks on the two significant climbs on the course. A very active Gault joined by seven other riders including Daniel Kain (Squadra Scozzese), Callum Thornley (Peebles CC), and Archie Ellen (Edinburgh RC) took the race lead splitting the race even further. The final bunch sprint saw Kain ease clear of his rivals as he crested the final approach to the finish line to take the win ahead of Callum Thornley and Fraser Gault.
Senior & Junior Women - Cat & Mouse
The field seemed content to conserve their energy on the windy course, riding a tactical race, keeping watchful eye on each other. Kathleen Thomas (Ythan CC) was keen to see what she could do, after a couple of laps, launching a brave solo effort. The field undeterred by her determination let her ride away, battling into the wind before they picked up the pace and quickly wound her back in again. The race settled down once more with no one willing to take risks.
Thomas went again, obviously feeling keen. This time the bunch let her take a few seconds before their race started in earnest, coming down to a sprint finish after 15 laps. Sarah Walker (Team Boompods) took the sprint fractions ahead of Heather Elder ( Synergy Cycles) and Beth Harley-Jepson (Edinburgh RC), while plucky competitor Thomas finished a commendable 9th.
Lauren Davis (Edinburgh RC) held off rival Ishbel Stuart ( Discovery Junior CC) to take the junior title.
Walker commented after the race:
“It was a very tactical race out there today, no one wanted to take any risks with the wind being so strong. That suited me pretty well as I was waiting for Beth (Harley_Jepson) to wear me down. I knew if it came down to a sprint I could be in with a chance. I didn’t think it would, but no one wanted to take on the race and I had enough in my legs to take the sprint at the end”
Junior Men - Logan’s run
Undeterred by the less than perfect conditions, junior rider Logan Maclean (Spokes RT) took the race on from the front. Going from the gun Maclean quickly settled into a strong solo break that would see he nearly lap the entire field in just under 45mins of racing. As Maclean time trialed to victory a frenetic race unfolded behind him for the runner up spots. Conor McKinnon (Southport CC), Christopher Hordon (Spokes RT) and Alex Ball (Edinburgh RC) quickly formed an alliance to chase Maclean down, but could do nothing to slow down his unrelentless pace as he forged to the finish line, only easing up as he approached the line so he didn’t lap the chasing three.
Their race came down to a sprint over three minutes behind the victorious Maclean. McKinnon took silver with Hordon settling for bronze.
Senior Men - A Lonie win
The stage was set for a thrilling end to a long day of racing with 20 riders ready to take it to the wire. Robert Wardell had other ideas and not content to settle in, made a valiant attempt to take on the race in a solo breakaway. Despite riding away for nearly a third of the race his move did not stick – but it saw the race pace go up a notch, splitting the field. Wardell made another move, this time he had company with David Duggan (Wheelbase CabTech Castelli) and soon after Martin Lonie (Nuun-Sigma Sports-London RT). These three took the race to the finish with Lonie taking the sprint finish from Wardell, with Duggan in 3rd.
Many thanks to all at Kinross CC who volunteered to help put on a well oiled day of championship racing, under challenging conditions and of course all the officials, without these excellent folk racing wouldn’t be as safe or as fun!