Kench takes win at AOMBR

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Location: Wantage Road, Ashbury, Swindon
Event: 4 June 2012

With three waves of racing planned throughout the Jubilee Bank Holiday, the action began at 12pm when the primary school races which included under 12, under 10 and under 8 for both boys and girls set off.

Completing as many laps around the Jubilee Beacon as could be managed in 15 minutes, the race was hotly contested by all and eventually won by Jack (all the way from Jersey) of the under 12s who had a race long battle with Aaron and Bradley.

The second wave of races sent off were the fun categories, tackling one lap of the main course. This was led from the gun by Robin Smith opening up a gap before the first descent, who was quickly overhauled by Simon Oxlade. As the riders came into the final woodland descent Smith had opened up a 10 second lead over Oxlade, with Graham Sneddon (who was on a borrowed bike) still in contention. On to the final punishing climb, and with the crowd cheering loudly, it came down to a battle of the fittest as all three riders struggled up the hill. Smith just held on to win after a sprint to the finish with Oxlade.

The third and final wave of racing saw the junior, veteran and senior riders all set off at the same time but tackling three, four and five laps respectively. Dan Smith took the hole shot and opened a small gap from Chris Keeble-Smith who was leading the chase. As the riders entered the second lap Peter Kench, who had a slow start, moved his way through to the front and opened up a five second gap over Smith. The two front runners were closely followed by Tim Grunsback, the leading veteran rider, with Nic Tilling and Chris Keeble-Smith now locked in a battle behind.

On the third lap Jacob Payne took the win in the junior category, after riding strongly (remaining in close contact to the leading seniors on the demanding AOMBR circuit). With the seniors now becoming a battle between teammates Smith and Kench, with the early race leader trying to limit his losses keeping Kench within 60 seconds by the end of the fourth lap.

Tim Grunsback took the win in the veteran race, on a brand new bike that he picked up the day before the race. He was pleased with his new bike, after it took him to victory on its maiden voyage over Chris Bishop, who said before the race that he feared some 'unplanned dismounts' on the course. Matt Antrobus took third and said his regular appearances in the GWR Team Winter Floodlit Cyclo-Cross races had helped him prepare for the race.

On the final lap of the senior race, Kench took the chequered flag after extending his margin of victory to over five minutes, cruising to victory. On dismounting he said of the course that he loved the four grassy climbs and the two steep wooded descents on the circuit. Dan Smith took second, after a slow final section of the course meant he was in sight of Chris Keeble- Smith and Nic Tilling on the final climb. Keeble-Smith managed to get the better of Tilling on the climb to claim third. Tilling commenting that his road background helped him on the hills but he was having problems in the technical sections, as he had only ridden the mountain bike loaned to him by Swindon Cycles Superstore that day.

AOMBR would like to thank all the riders and Bill Spence, Margaret Smith, Stewart Smith, Robin Smith, Ian Edmonds, Mitchells Cycles, Trail Cake, Purity Ale, Terry Rock, Grant Bayton and the Village of Ashbury for putting together the race and making it a success. The event managed to raise over £170 for the two charities: Sport Relief and the Ashbury Church.