Lewes Wanderers Criterium Series

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45th Lewes Wanderers CC Evening Criterium Series

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Story posted June 4, 2010, from Mark Winton | Sponsored by www.thetristore.com

The Lewes Wanderers CC Criterium series, sponsored by www.thetristore.com (a bike and triathlon store in Eastbourne) is a series is made up of three evening races over 50 kilometre road circuit starting at Laughton, East Sussex and open to 3rd and 4th category riders, Women and Juniors. The first round in the series was held on a beautiful summers evening with 50 riders on the start line ready for a battle.

Right from the start Jamie Lowden and Henry Bird from the promoting club launched an early attack. In road racing, the first break away rarely works, but working well together, Lowden and Bird squeezed out their advantage over the bunch to around 20 seconds to contest the first ‘prime’ for additional points to count for the overall General Classification. Lowden took the 5 points on offer and Bird 3 points for second place.

Shaun Reed of Bayeux Landscapes was controlling the front of the bunch, picking up a point for 3rd place. With the two strongest teams in the race (Bayeux Landscapes and Brighton Mitre) not represented at the front, a group of riders forged their way across to swell the lead group to include Stuart Fahey, Nick Sky and Duncan Morgan (Brighton Mitre), Mark Markowski (Bayeux Landscapes) and Andrew Comben (Metropolitan Police CC).

At the end of the second lap, the Lewes riders came to the front again to take the first two prime positions with Bird getting the better of Lowden this time and Comben taking the last place available. Lowden was to pay for his efforts and slipped back to the main group.

At the beginning of the 3rd lap, it looked like it was all over for the front group as there was a split and Brighton Mitre looked the strongest. Fahey made several attempts to break away whilst everyone was trying to find their place in the group but with only 45 seconds over the bunch, the group was soon back as one and organised enough to hold their advantage.

Rob Pelham (Lewes Wanderers CC) was the final rider to join the front group with a courageous solo effort to bridge the gap. Pelham made the junction just before the final prime which was won by Fahey, followed by Morgan and Comben. With a lap to go, despite their best efforts and despite representing all the major teams in the race, the front group's lead never extended to a minute and it was unclear whether they would stay away to the finish or whether the race would come down to a bunch sprint.

Riders from One-Life Fuga, Sussex Nomads, Eastbourne Rovers and Southborough & District Wheelers tried hard to catch the front group and the gap began to close, but it was too little too late.  Markowski took the win with a sprint from the front group with Comben and Bird completing the top 3. Fahey led his Brighton Mitre teammates across the line for 4th with Sky 5th and Morgan 6th. Pelham finished 7th after suffering bike problems.

Lowden recovered from his earlier efforts to lead the bunch across the line for 8th, Reed was 9th and Lewes riders Tom Glandfield and Stuart Kirkham finished 10th and 11th. Bird did enough to lead the General classification after the first round, with Markowski and Comben not far behind.


Prime 1
1st 29 Jamie Lowden - Lewes Wanderers CC
2nd 35 Henry Bird - Lewes Wanderers CC
3rd 3 Shaun Reed - Bayeux landscapes

Prime 2
1st 35 Henry Bird - Lewes Wanderers CC
2nd 29 Jamie Lowden - Lewes Wanderers CC
3rd 60 Andrew Comben - Met Police

Prime 3
1st 13 Stuart Fahey - Brighton Mitre
2nd 19 Duncan Morgan - Brighton Mitre
3rd 60 Andrew Comben - Met Police

1st  Mark Markowski - Bayeux landscapes
2nd  Andy Comben - Met Police
3rd  Henry Bird - Lewes Wanderers CC
4th  Stuart Fahey - Brighton Mitre
5th  Nick Sky - Brighton Mitre
6th  Duncan Morgan - Brighton Mitre
7th  Rob Pelham - Lewes Wanderers CC
8th  Jamie lowden - Lewes Wanderers CC
9th  Shaun Reed - Bayeux landscapes
10th Tom Glandfield - Lewes Wanderers CC
11th Stuart Kirkham - Lewes Wanderers CC
12th Ian Leeding - Redhill CC

General Classification after round 1
Henry Bird - Lewes Wanderers CC - 15 points
Mark Markowski - Bayeux landscapes - 12 points
Andrew Comben - Met Police - 11 points
Stuart Fahey - Brighton Mitre - 10 points
Jamie Lowden - Lewes Wanderers CC - 8 points
Duncan Morgan - Brighton Mitre - 6 points
Nick Sky - Brighton Mitre - 4 points
Shaun Reed - Bayeux landscapes - 1 point