Manchester Mid-Week Madness Round 1, Leverhulme Bolton

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Location: Leverhulme Park, Bolton
Event: 31 May 2012

Dan Wells finished the convincing winner at the opening round of Manchester’s Mid-Week mountain bike series, leading from the start and never threatened by a competitive field behind.

Now in its third year, the short-course cross country format welcomed over 60 competitors – the highest ever turnout – to the new venue of Leverhulme Park promoted by Lancashire Road club and Horwich CC.

With a number of slimy descents, tight bends and climbs riders first had a small start loop to contend with and after three minutes came through the start/finish proper. Groups were already beginning to form and a few riders were already blowing after negotiating the first two climbs to the start.

After the first lap Dan Wells had gapped a small chasing group of Adrian Lawrence, Shaun Wells, Jason Tonge, Chris Lever, Roy Hunt and Joseph Heywood and this was to be the last they saw of him. The racing behind was fast and furious, with positions constantly changing as the riders tackled the short hilly circuit.

Pete Middleton and Paul Whittaker surged past the group of Hunt, Tonge and Heywood who were working together with Ferguson and Shaw just behind. Rebecca Preece was holding her own in front of Harding and Murray and would be the first female.

Middleton pushed through to fourth in front of Lever, and Tonge lost contact with Hunt and Heywood after a crash on the first descent which was slowly turning into a greasy chute.

Lever and Whittaker both slipped behind the pair of Hunt and Heywood on the fourth lap ,before Lever battled back past them on the fifth lap.. Ferguson slowly reeled in Hunt and Heywood and joined them on the penultimate lap.

The front three enjoyed a somewhat lonely trudge round the course whilst all the action went on just behind. Riders were glad to hear the bell as Wells came through to start his seventh and final lap after lapping consistently at 7.5 minutes. Hunt was passed by Heywood and Ferguson on the line after setting much of the pace and most of the riders felt the race seemed longer than 55 minutes. Preece tied up the female category and 18 riders finished on the same lap as the winner in one of the most competitive events we have had. Racing returns to the venue in two weeks on a very different and flatter course, hope to see you all there.

1. Dan Wells Cube Bikes M 7 Laps 00:54:55
2. Adrian Lawrence B Global V 00:56:35
3. Shaun Wells Cooksons Cycles S 00:58:15
4. Pete Middleton Zepnat V 00:58:57
5. Chris Lever Cooksons Cycles M 00:59:29
6. Joseph Heywood V 00:59:48
7. Mark Ferguson Oldham Ruffyeds GV 00:59:50
8. Roy Hunt Colnago/Skins GV 01:00:04
9. Jason Tonge Lancashire Road Club V 1:00:44
10. Paul Whittaker Stockport Clarion V 1:01:31
11. Graham Bryce
12. Phillip Dilvkes
13. John Shaw
14. Mark O’Connell
15. Craig Blain
16. Stuart Ormes
17. Jerrod Hartley
18. Curtis Mansbridge
19. Ally Wright 6laps
20. Simon Watts
21. Neil Evans
22. J Chandler
23. Gareth Collum
24. Des Thorpe
25. Simon Wood
26. Tom Frater
27. Sean Beswick
28. Dean Harwood
29. Mark Griffith
30. Dean Smith
31. Keith Bailey
32. Darren O’Toole
33. Andy McKay 5 laps
34. Stephen Wood
35. Rob Allen
36. Andy Porter
37. Becky Preece
38. Tim Stanley
39. Michael Briggs
40. Paul Atace
41. Mark Spittlehouse
42. James Wilson
43. Darren Derbyshire
44. Greg Vallance
45. Simon Cunningham
46. Ian Morgan
47. Geoff Robinson
48. Glenn Barry
49. Rachel Murray
50. George Lovell
51. Luke Kiernan
52. David Eastham
53. Jools Chesters
54. Phil Clark
55. Chris Smith
56. Adrian Midgeley 4 laps
57. Iain Jones
58. Jason Aldred

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.