Round six of the British Cycling National Youth Circuit Series took place at the Hillingdon Cycle Circuit on a typical British summer’s day – overcast with gusty winds and the occasional sharp shower.
The Under 8 competition followed a similar pattern to previous rounds with Daniel Wylie-Morris of Abergavenny Road Club and Niall Colquitt of Team Royal London 360 Isle of Man once more to the front.
Not quite as dominant as in some of the earlier rounds, the duo were joined in the lead group by Finlay Tarling of West Wales Cycle Racing Team, Joseph O’Brien of home club Hillingdon Slipstreamers and a Palmer Park Velo trio of Finn Hawkins, James Brown and Thomas Wadsworth.
In the final sprint it was Colquitt and Wylie-Morris who broke away from the rest of the lead group with the Manxman taking a narrow victory, while Hawkins was the first of the three Palmer Park Velo riders home – with Brown fourth and Wadsworth fifth.
1 Niall COLQUITT Team Royal London 360 Isle Of Man
2 Daniel WYLIE-MORRIS Abergavenny Road Club
3 Finn HAWKINS Palmer Park Velo RT
4 James BROWN Palmer Park Velo RT
5 Thomas WADSWORTH Palmer Park Velo RT
6 Finlay TARLING West Wales Cycle Racing Team
Lichfield City CC’s Askey brothers have dominated the Under 10 and Under 12 categories this year and younger brother Ben looked set to continue the trend as he worked hard at the front of the lead group.
Joshua Tarling of West Wales Cycle Racing Team and Percy Hampton of the Isle of Man shared much of the work early on, but it was Askey, Tarling and Thomas Davies of Welwyn Wheelers who came closest to breaking up the lead group and slipping away.
It wasn’t to be, though, and the leaders came back together for another bunch finish which Max Poole of Lincsquad looked to have sewn up until Askey breezed past him on the run-in. Poole held on to second ahead of Tarling and Davies.
1 Ben ASKEY Lichfield City CC
2 Max POOLE Lincsquad (Lincolnshire Quadrathlon Club)
3 Joshua TARLING West Wales Cycle Racing Team
4 Thomas DAVIES Welwyn Wheelers CC
5 Joel CORBISHLEY Team Milton Keynes
6 Joe KIELY Welwyn Wheelers CC
If Ben Askey sneaked the Under 10 win, older brother Lewis dominated the Under 12s. An early solo break from Irfan Zaman of BigFoot CC faltered and Askey, at the front of the main group from the start, dropped Ben Tulett of Hargroves Cycles and rode away from the rest of the field in the only solo win of the day.
By the finish he had a 25 second lead over Tulett, who edged Owain Roberts of Towy Riders to take second place.
1 Lewis ASKEY Lichfield City CC
2 Ben TULETT Hargroves Cycles RT-Specialized-Trant-Next-Elliott's
3 Owain ROBERTS Towy Riders
4 Kieran MORRIS Mid Shropshire Wheelers
5 Owen WILLIAMS Lee Valley Youth Cycling Club
6 Gabriel BANNER Hillingdon Slipstreamers
Jessica Roberts of Towy Riders looked as though she might continue her impressive winning streak with a flag-to-flag solo victory. She was away from the start and had opened up a sizeable gap on the chasers, led by Charlotte Cole-Hossain of VC Londres. Askey’s brilliant ride in the Under 12s apart, though, it wasn’t the day for a solo ride and Roberts was soon back in the main bunch.
Another attempt to slip away with Elizabeth Bennett of Cardiff JIF also faltered before the decisive break of the day formed with Roberts, Cole-Hossain, Sophie Tayor of Bristol Cycling Development Squad, Pfeiffer Georgi of Giant Cycling Club - Halo Films and Rachel Jary of VC Londres going well clear of the chasers.
The result was never really in doubt with Roberts simply easing away from her rivals on the final straight. She was so comfortable that she was able to look behind her and ease up as she cruised over the line.
Things were a little more frantic behind her, with Jary easing out team mate Cole-Hossain for second and Georgi pipping Taylor to fourth.
Under 14 Girls
1 Jessica ROBERTS Towy Riders
2 Rachel JARY VC Londres
3 Charlotte COLE-HOSSAIN VC Londres
4 Pfeiffer GEORGI Giant Cycling Club - Halo Films
5 Sophie TAYLOR Bristol Cycling Development Squad
6 Lowri THOMAS Abergavenny Road Club
The Under 14 Girls race was without doubt the most exciting of the day. The Under 14 Boys race, not so much. With everyone watching Dan Tulett in his National Champion’s jersey, the field was together for all but the very early stages with lap times dropping from 2:15 to 2:40 as everybody politely declined to take the initiative.
All of which seemed to be playing in to Tulett’s hands by setting up a bunch sprint but, when the sprint came it was William Turnbull of Tyneside Vagabonds who took it – comfortably – from Tulett, Fred Wright of VC Londres and Theo Hartley of Bolton Hot Wheels CC.
Under 14 Boys
1 William TURNBULL Tyneside Vagabonds CC
2 Daniel TULETT Hargroves Cycles RT-Specialized-Trant-Next-Elliott's
3 Fred WRIGHT VC Londres
4 Theo HARTLEY Bolton Hot Wheels CC
5 Charles PAGE Hillingdon Slipstreamers
6 Jake STEWART Solihull CC
In previous years the Under 14 and Under 16 Girls races have often been run together due to the small size of the entry, but those days are long gone. Over 30 riders were entered – although a couple, including one of the pre-race favourites Charlotte Broughton of MG Décor – didn’t start.
29 riders set off in the worst weather of a very changeable day and there were some spirited attempts to shake things up – Grace Garner and Abbie Mae Parkinson of RST Racing Team tried to jump clear with Lucy Shaw of Solihull CC – but, once again it came down to a sprint.
It was close for second, with Eleanor Dickinson of Beacon Wheelers just edging out Shaw, but it was Garner who took a comfortable win.
Under 16 Girls
1 Grace GARNER RST Racing Team
2 Eleanor DICKINSON Beacon Wheelers
3 Lucy SHAW Solihull CC
4 Megan BARKER Cardiff Ajax CC
5 Sophie CAPEWELL Lichfield City CC
6 Abigail DENTUS Team De Ver
The contrast between the heavy rain in the penultimate race and the brilliant sunshine of the final one couldn’t have been greater but the Under 16 Boys race followed a similar pattern to the Girls race with a few attempts to get away, ending in yet another bunch sprint.
Calum Anderton of Motivo RT led an early attempt to get away and Reece Wood of Aire Valley RT also tried to slip away. With three to go, Jake Howes of Hillingdon Slipstreamers came to the front of the bunch and started to drive the race on and on the penultimate lap he went for it. By the bell he had almost the full length of the finishing straight on the chasing bunch.
It looked like his years of experience on this circuit might pay off, but as he hit the head wind on the back straight, the marauding bunch overhauled him and it was another gallop to the line.
James Ireson of Wolverhampton Wheelers went clear in the last 50 metres to take the win ahead of Milton Keynes winner Joe Holt of County Cycles Racing Team and Thomas Weeds of Derby Mercury RT.
Under 16 Boys
1 James IRESON Wolverhampton Wheelers
2 Joe HOLT County Cycles Racing Team
3 Thomas WEEDS Derby Mercury RC
4 Luke MORGAN Cycle Club Luton
5 Ryan PHILLIPS Wolverhampton Wheelers
6 Tom SEFTON Palmer Park Velo RT
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