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Pearson Wins National Junior Championships
Barnard Castle, County Durham
Promoted by: British Cycling North East Region
Event: 2nd July 2011
Report & Images: Andy Whitehouse
Daniel Pearson rode a pro's race to win the 2011National Junior Road Race championships on a demanding 78 mile circuit in County Durham. The Port Talbot Wheelers' rider played the waiting game and attacked on the last climb of the day to ride into Barnard Castle to take a fine solo victory in front of a large crowd.
A field of 78 riders rolled out from the stunning Bowes Museum at noon to the applause of the onlookers who saw the first National cycle race held in the area for many years.
The early miles were dominated by riders chancing their luck with attacks coming thick and fast but the heat would play a big part of the race's outcome with riders being shelled out the bunch all day.
A useful looking group of six including two Rapha Condor riders, Joe Fox and Lawrence Carpenter, broke away on the opening lap and by Staindrop they had pulled a gap of around two minutes on a three man chase including Glendene's Josh Hannan, Brennan Townsend(Mid Devon) and Johnathan Cregeen (MicroGaming IOM) who in turn were holding around three minutes back to the main field.
The status quo was held going into the feed at Wharton on the second lap and by the left sweep through Staindrop the leading six had pulled a few more seconds on the chasers.
The six front runners were still out in front starting the final lap of the big loop but their hunt for glory would soon be thwarted with the chasing group all pulled back into the peloton and by the final run into Barnards castle off the third lap the original six were safely in the bunch.
Meanwhile, counter attacks were flying off the front and another group of six including Jack Bowyer(Team Wallis CHH RT) and Jack Penrice(SIS.com) were orchestrating the moves and were holding their own from a chasing Josh Hannon and a reduced main bunch.
Three final fast laps would sort the field out and all eyes were on local rider Alex Bottomley (Fietson Tempo) who had made the break with Alex Peters (Cycling club Hackney), Jim Lewis of Glendene CC and Hargroves' Alistair Slater. Slater was dropped coming into the final circuit, chases were forming at the bell to bring the leading three back and in the end it was Port Talbot Wheelers-CJ Construction's Daniel Pearson, who had kept in the wheels throughout the race, who made his break on the last climb, who took a fine win from a trailing Jim Lewis and Alex Bottomley.
After the race, Daniel Pearson spoke to Andy Whitehouse: "I'm really, really happy with the result, I never expected to win, I thought top 15 maybe, I waited till the end and a few guys went away and it looked like something so I chased it down. I think Alistair had a puncture so he dropped off, there was some messing about toward the end so on the last climb I just went - I felt quite good and got the solo victory and there's nothing better then that.
1 Daniel Pearson (Port Talbot Wheelers) 2:58:00
2 Jim Lewis (Glendene CC) @ 10sec
3 Alex Bottomley (Fietsen Tempo) @ same time
4 Alex Peters
5 Mathew Holmes
6 James Baillie
7 Joseph Moses
8 Samual Lowe
9 Jonathan Dibben
10 Christopher Latham
11 Mathew Haase
12 Owain Doull
13 Oliver Rossi
14 Josh Papworth
15 George Moore
16 Sam Connolley
17 Lewis Tarnai-Wilson
19 Harry Tanfield
20 Jordan Hargrieves