Fraddon Grand Prix
Location: St Columb Major, Cornwall
Event: 1 July 2012
Report: Snowdon Sports/Bev Pearce
Newquay Velo staged Cornwall's first professional road race last Sunday, the first in five years, starting from Kingsley Village in Fraddon.
A high quality field of cyclist including elite Professionals from different parts of the country, raced against local club riders including - Newquay Velo, One & All, Penzance Wheelers, Royal Navy and Tri Logic.
The 60 mile course proved to be a tough one, with a small climb and plenty of long drags through the middle then back towards Fraddon in this six mile circuit of ten laps. But the shallow descents made up for any loss of time with the average pace around 25/27 throughout the race with 35 riders, the majority from out of the county, showing terrific riding and bike handling skills.
Two riders from Newquay Velo, Mark Barlow and Tim McEvoy started well and riding back to back from a mojor race yesterday. Within the first lap one mile in, a two man break at the start of the first climb broke away from the bunch. Pete Vincent of Mid Devon Cycling and Pro Elite rider Johnathan Mould of Sean Kelly's racing team - An-Post ,powered away.
By the second lap Vincent and Mould had a 20 second gap from the others riding down towards Brighton Cross. Still together up the climb again, both took turns riding on the front looking strong. Before the decent towards Fraddon they had opened up a gap of 50 seconds, at this point it seemed like the main bunch behind were going to drop further behind. But mid way through lap three, the gap started to close down to 40 seconds. Into the forth lap on the fastest point of the course towards Brighton Cross, the main bunch were only 10 seconds behind, putting the pressure on the chasing group of six riders, which included Velo's Mark Barlow, swallowed up Mould and Vincent half way up the climb from Brighton Cross towards the sharp left turn, a mile ahead. At the top of the climb a lone break was made by Tavis Walker of Wilier Live to Ride. Putting the hammer down he rode with emece power, dominating the race.
By lap five, Walker was 1 minute up from the chasing bunch at the left turn, after riding a long drag up from Brighton Cross and this did not change through lap six leaving the remnance of the bunch behind him.
Lap seven, the gap opened up to 1 minute 11 seconds with now only three chasing riders behind him and a total gap of 1minute 30 seconds from the main bunch.
The battle went on with the other riders to limit their losses in the eighth lap, with four group splits in the race at this point and the gap from the chasing three behind Walker slightly closed to 1 minute 6 seconds, with another 20 seconds away from the main bunch who gave it everything and dug deep.
During the ninth lap, Walker lapped three riders, this showed the strength and pace from him against other teams of riders with also strength and pace. By no means were these other three riders caught napping, they were also showing terrific racing pace and skill.
Walker by now looked unbeatable, he did not let up once, riding consistently all the way, riding out on his own working in the big ring, looking unstoppable.
On the ring of the bell for the final lap, the gap between Walker and the chasing group became 1 minute 40 seconds and again lapping four more riders before the final decent. Riding towards the finish up out of the saddle pushing to the finish line for a clear victory and £150 first prize. In second place - Colin Parry of Wilier Live to Ride, Third place - Hefin Price of Team Wiggle.
Newquay Velo's Mark Barlow came in a strong 11th place, after racing yesterday in The National Championships in Portreath and becoming third overall National Champion and Velo's Tim Mc Evoy finishing today in 18th position after he too raced in the cat 3/4 yesterday with team mates Rob Brown and Pete Ryan of Velo. Also at The National Championships yesterday in the ladies race both Lesley Richardson and Jenny Code rode strong for Velo with Code finishing 4th.
The next race event will be number eight of The Cornish Race Series at Perranporth Airdrome for a 7pm start.
1 Tavis Walker (Wilier/Live2Ride)
2 Colin Parry (Wilier/Live2Ride)
3 Hefin Price (Team Wiggle)
4 James Williams (Primal Europe)
5 Ben Simmons (Team Wiggle)
6 Peter Vincent (Mid Devon CC)
7 Thomas Marshall (Wilier/Live2Ride)
8 Brennan Townsend (Team Raleigh)
9 Junior Heffernan (One and All Cycling)
10 Peter Haworth (Primal Europe)
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.