Attacking on the third of the seven laps, David Clarke (Node4 Giordana Racing) rode away from the field to finish over two minutes clear in the Jim Rogers Memorial Road Race on the rolling Oakenclough circuit in the Forest of Bowland.
The Node4 squad were the dominant force in the race, round 14 of the CDNW League, and Clarke chose his moment well with a stinging attack on the Oakenclough climb at the back of the circuit which saw him quickly open up a gap of a minute over the rest.
The 33-year-old Derbyshire rider’s advantage grew to a safe three minutes before a chasing trio emerged comprising Node4 pair Pete Williams and Matt Cronshaw, a solo winner of the previous weekend’s round on the Dolphinholme circuit, along with Simon Yates (100% ME).
Williams won the sprint for second place, 2-20 down on Clarke at the line, with Yates forced to settle for third.
It was a happy outcome for Clarke after an unlucky run since his sixth place in the British Elite road race championship.
“I’ve had a couple of bad ‘offs’ “, said Clarke. “I had ten days off my bike after a crash, and after starting back seriously, I’d only done a few days and then I was knocked off by a car just over a week ago. It wasn’t as bad as the first one, but it was down the same side.
“I felt pretty good when I got away today, the gap went up as my average speed went up, and I just dug in on the last lap as the others really started to work.
“It’s good for my build up to the Tour of Britain.”
After a late start to his road season, Clitheroe’s Ian Stott (Blackburn and District CTC) began making up for lost time with victory in the supporting race for third and fourth categories over five laps.
1 David Clarke (Node4 Giordana Racing) 3-11-46
2 Pete Williams (Node4 Giordana Racing) at 2-20
3 Simon Yates (100% ME)
4 Matt Cronshaw (Node4 Giordana Racing) all same time
5 David McGowan (Team UK Youth) at 3-54
6 Ben Greenwood (Vanillabikes.com) same time
7 Tom Barras (Metaltek-Scott) at 5-50
8 Will Haynes (Herbalife-Leisure Lakes Bikes.com)
9 Giles Drake (Team Elite)
10 James Sampson (Node4 Giordana Racing) all same time
1 Ian Stott (Blackburn and District CTC) 2-31-01
2 Roy Davies (Team Elite)
3 Christopher Taylor (Border City Wheelers)
4 Luke Beswick (Buxton CC/Sett Valley Cycles)
5 John Agnew (Lune RCC)
6 Philip Knupfer (Manchester Wheelers)
7 John Clegg (Ribble Valley CRC)
8 Stephen Bottomley (Crosstrax)
9 John Bamford (Lancashire RC)
10 Jonathan Rooke (Wills Wheels CC)
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.