Location: Redbridge circuit, Ilford, Essex
Event: 25 January 2014
Report and Photos: Nick White
Edmund Bradbury (Cambridge Univ CC) won the 2/3 cat race at round three of the East London Velo Series at the Redbridge circuit in Essex, holding off two-time winner Gunther Zechmann (London Phoenix) by a tiny margin.
Conditions had deteriorated for the second race of the afternoon with an Easterly cross wind buffeting riders as they rode up the hill, but it didn't take long for the first attack to come - again from a London Phoenix rider Miles Butler and Vojtech Blazejovsky of Brixton Cycles who opened up a gap of 13 seconds.
The Bunch were in no mood to let this break go and they were brought back but this didn't deter further attempts by Kieran Brady of Citycyclecentre.com and Neal Mackintosh of London Phoenix having another dig and Andrew Carter of Portsmouth North End CC trying to bridge across to their short lived break away attempt.
As the Prime whistle was blown at the 25-minute point, series leader Gunther Zechmann (London Phoenix) attacked over the line with Edmund Bradbury chasing hard to get on his wheel, stringing the bunch out for the next lap; Zechmann took the prime the next time up the hill closely beating Jack Steven of East London Velo into second.
Following the prime the race came back together for the next 15 minutes until Ray Wilson of London Dynamo attacked on the hill and got a 10 second gap with Edmund Bradbury again attempting to bridge across to him.
This effort had a massive effect on the bunch which began to fracture into three or four small pockets of riders vying for contention near the front; one such group being driven by Gunther Zechmann who looked strong, with a further three riders in no man’s land behind them.
The Zechmann group picked up rider number 10, Edmund Bradbury, from the initial attack while Wilson the instigator went back to the bunch. This new group of five ploughed through the back markers and lapped riders on the back straight and as it appeared up the hill only three other riders could live with the pace being set by Zechmann and Bradbury - Theo Doncaster of CC Ashwell, Adam Capes of Finchley Race Team and Colin Bailey of North Road CC.
Again the bunch was lined out but didn't seem to be making inroads into the breakaway who shed Colin Bailey back to the bunch, his place however was quickly taken by Youth rider Lewis Bulley of Sports Traider who had featured in the earlier skirmishes as the main breakaway formed.
At 50 minutes the wind was picking up on the circuit making things tough for the breakaway who had drawn the gap out to 30 seconds, perhaps using the crosswinds to his advantage Joel Natale of Dulwich Paragon attacked hard taking George Wood of Neon Velo with him, this was short lived for Wood who went back to the bunch after 2 laps leaving Natale to push on alone in no man’s land.
As the race wound up to its climax the breakaway's lead was unassailable and Joel Natale looked safe in no man’s land battling hard alone against the wind.
At the bell Zechmann and Bradbury attacked the tiring break and quickly pulled out 10 seconds on the final lap and it was enough to see them both clear to fight it out alone for the sprint. Zechmann had taken the earlier prime but it was Bradbury who took a fine victory on the line narrowly beating the series leader into 2nd place.
Doncaster edged out Bulley for the final podium position with Adam Capes taking 5th and Joel Natale putting in a strong solo effort to hold off the bunch for 6th. Kieran Brady went early and caught the bunch napping finishing well ahead of the main sprint with Luke Merrilees of WyndyMilla heading up the bunch charge.
Fourth Cat Race
63 riders took to the line at Hog Hill for the 4th Category race today. Breezy but mild temperatures accompanied the fast pace and many riders were shelled from the bunch within the first lap.
An early attack went away with Jason Creswell of London Phoenix and Callum Haseler of Cotswold Veldrijden developing a healthy gap on the bunch. After 4 laps away Creswell distanced Haseler who managed to hold off the bunch until the halfway point of the race before eventually being reeled in, leaving Creswell to go it alone to pull the gap on the bunch out to 50 seconds.
A touch of wheels brought 3 riders down on the hill including Tom Haines of ELV who managed to continue, one rider was forced to withdraw with a buckled wheel but luckily no injuries.
After 35 minutes of racing a sprint prime was offered and London Dynamo rider Alex Evangecidis attacked early on the hill and then kept on going, with no reaction from the bunch Callum Haseler took the opportunity to attack again and quickly bridged across to Evangecidis. Working together the pair put a safe distance between themselves and the chasers but were unable to bridge across to the leading Phoenix rider Creswell who was maintaining the 50 second gap over the field.
At 5 laps to go Robin Hawes of Plomesgate CC bolted from the bunch at the top of the Hogberg and pulled out 10 seconds on the bunch which he bravely maintained until the final lap.
The win was taken by London Phoenix's Jason Creswell who looked very comfortable throughout, second and third were sprinted out between Evangecidis and Haseler, the early attacks from Haseler perhaps giving Evangecidis the edge who duly obliged. As the bunch powered up the hill Robin Hawes was furiously sprinting to avoid getting swamped before the line and only Mike Smith managed to get around him before the flag leaving Hawes a well-deserved fifth place as the bunch powered through the line.
1 Edmund Bradbury- Cambridge Uni CC
2 Gunther Zechmann- London Phoenix CC
3 Theo Doncaster- CC Ashwell
4 Lewis Bulley- Sports Traider RT ( Youth A)
5 Adam Capes- Finchley RT
6 Joel Natale- Dulwich Paragon
7 Kieran Brady- CityCycleCentre.com
8 Luke Merrilees- Wyndymilla
9 Charles Pearson- Cambridge CC (J)
10 Dan Tulett- Hargroves Cycles (Youth A)
11 Martin Ruepp- Iceni Velo
12 Frank Rawlins- North Road CC
13 Jake Charlton- VC Deal/Active
14 David Barnes- Sports Traider RT (Youth A)
15 Jack Steven- ELV
16 Marcus Burnett- Sports Traider RT (Youth A)
17 Colin Bailey- North Road CC
18 Cameron Woolsey- CC Ashwell
19 George Wood- Neon Velo
20 Leo Lerner- VO2 Development Team (J)
21 Andrew Carter- Portsmouth North End CC
22 Miles Butler- London Phoenix CC
23 Ray Wilson- London Dynamo
24 James Local- London Dynamo
25 Cameron Judson- Kingston Wheelers CC
26 Neal Mackintosh- London Phoenix CC
27 Joshua Maynard- Welwyn Wheelers
28 Pete Stuart- Private Member
29 Vojtech Blazejovsky- Brixton Cycles
30 Rhys Keepence- Dulwich Paragon CC
31 Simon Bromley- London Dynamo
32 Will Sloper- Kingston Wheelers CC
33 Antonius Wubben- Private Member
34 Phil Holloway- Southend Wheelers
35 Daniel Maynard- Welwyn Wheelers (J)
36 David McLean- Cambridge Uni CC
37 Clover Murray- Braintree Velo.
4th Cats only:
1 Jason Creswell- London Phoenix
2 Alex Evangecidis- London Dynamo (Sprint Prime #1)
3 Callum Haseler- Cotswold Veldrisden
4 Mike Smith- Private Member
5 Robin Hawes- Plomesgate CC
6 Greg Niziskiotis- London Dynamo
7 Luke Lawrence- Private Member
8 Timothy Lynch- VC Dulwich College
9 Karl Thomey- Brixton Cycles
10 Tom Black- Private Member
11 Laurence Kirby- Welwyn Wheelers (J)
12 Pete Dyson- ELV
13 Paul Doble- Bishops Stortford CC
14 Mathew Wilkins- Dulwich Paragon
15 Ryan Martin- Ford CC
16 James Parker- Maison Du Velo
17 Tom Haines- ELV
18 Arnav Kapur- Dulwich Paragon (J)
19 Axis Kollaros- London Dynamo
20 Mitchell Blain- London Dynamo
21 Oliver Scott- Dulwich Paragon (J)
22 Jason Fitchew- Ford CC
23 Jean Rumbold- North Road CC
24 Christopher Hazelgrove- CC Hackney
25 Carsten Meilandt- Team White
26 Charlie Passfield- Private Member (J)
27 Jack Hardwicke- Plomesgate CC
28 David Ross- Fig CC
29 Freddie Liversidge- Private Member
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