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Report: Round one of Reading Track League

Report: Round one of Reading Track League

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As usual, the Youth riders kicked off the evening at the opening round with a 200m Time Trial that will seed them for sprint competitions for the first part of the season. There was a bumper turn out from the youngsters, who shrugged off the freezing weather while the Senior riders put on extra layers or huddled under blankets in the new warm-up area.

The Senior racing got under way with a 10 Lap Scratch for the A riders and after a brisk, but cagey start, Nick English of AW Cycles set the pattern for the evening with a break three laps from the finish. Joe Holloway of VC10 went with him but couldn’t quite stay on terms with the time trial specialist who rode away to take the win. Holloway followed him home with English’s young team mate George Withers winning the sprint for third.

In the Senior B Scratch, Under 16 rider Louis Magnani went from the gun and built up a healthy lead before he was joined in the break by an unlikely ally in the form of sprinter Paul Davidoff from Team Terminator. In the closing stages Magnani’s fine solo effort was finally swept up by a larger break of four riders but the youngster still had enough to win the sprint, taking the three points ahead of Sean Gorvy of GS Henley and Stuart Stow of Hounslow & District Wheelers. Abbie Dentus of Welwyn Wheelers was the first of the Ladies home in the B race.

In the Sprint Heats, English again powered away, albeit under pressure from team mates Withers and Cam Swarbrick, with English and Withers progressing to the Final. Donal Linehan of Newbury RC took the second heat from Holloway with young Max Stedman of Palmer Park Velo just missing out.

A bigger field in the Senior Bs required three heats and it was Sam Grant of West Drayton MBC who cruised through from heat one ahead of Phil Watts of North Hants RC. Magnani took heat two from Simon Drewett of Mid Oxon CRT. Davidoff and Richard Moss of GS Henley took the last two spots in the Final.

The Ladies’ sprint competition saw a straight Final with young Dentus of Welwyn Wheelers pushing Harriet Owen of Node4 all the way to the line. Owen took it though, with Rohan Battison of For Viored taking third place.

English repeated his break away tactics in the Senior A Devil – coming perilously close to being eliminated by taking over half a lap on the field – but held on to win with Withers edging out Linehan in the more conventional sprint for second place. With his place already booked in the Sprint Final, English looked set to dominate the Senior A results while Magnani also stayed on course for a clean sweep of Senior B events, taking the B Devil ahead of Jason Pitt of Palmer Park Velo and Watts. Owen was first of the Ladies, ahead of Dentus and Battison.

Before the Sprint Finals, the Senior A and B riders took to the track together for the traditional warm-up event prior to the AW Cycles 20k Endurance Finale – the Unknown Distance. Although they ride together, they’re pointed separately and when the bell went it was Masters World Champion Martyn Harris who led the Senior As home – ahead of Stedman and Withers – to end English’s chances of cleaning up. Magnani kept his hopes alive, though, with another win, heading home Stow and Pitt with Owen again pipping Dentus for first place in the Ladies’ competition.

English was back on top in the Senior A Sprint Final – just edging out a hard charging Withers with Linehan in third place. And in the Senior Bs, Davidoff edgded Magnani in to second place to ensure nobody would leave the track with a perfect winning record – Watts taking the last of the points.

With the temperature still continuing to plunge, the riders took to the track for the 20k. Several failed to take the start and the cold and the pace of the race saw them start to drop out as English, Harris and Stedman applied the pressure at the front. Harris dropped back and for the last few laps we were treated to the site of former rower English and the diminutive Stedman working together to try to lap the field.

They did get just over half a lap at one point but they never had quite enough – nor, in truth, any real need – to catch the back of the field, which by now consisted of less than a dozen riders. Stedman had a cheeky attempt to get the jump on English on the back straight on the final lap but English used his power to ease away, capping a fine night’s racing with yet another win. Stedman held on for second with Ian Greenstreet of Newbury RC just edging out Withers for third. In a tight finish, Pitt was the first B home with Stow second and Magnani third. Daniel Lansley of Palmer Park Velo was the only rider from the Youth league to finish the race – finishing a very creditable sixth overall.

Results:

Senior A

10 Lap Scratch
1 Nick ENGLISH AW Cycles
2 Joe HOLLOWAY VC10
3 George WITHERS AW Cycles

Devil
1 Nick ENGLISH AW Cycles
2 George WITHERS AW Cycles
3 Donal LINEHAN Newbury RC

Unknown Distance
1 Martyn HARRIS Banjo Cycles
2 Max STEDMAN Palmer Park Velo
3 George WITHERS AW Cycles

Sprint
1 Nick ENGLISH AW Cycles
2 George WITHERS AW Cycles
3 Donal LINEHAN Newbury RC

AW Cycles 20k Endurance
1 Nick ENGLISH AW Cycles
2 Max STEDMAN Palmer Park Velo
3 Ian GREENSTREET Newbury RC

Senior B

10 Lap Scratch
1 Louis MAGNANI Prestige VC
2 Sean GORVY GS Henley
3 Stuart STOW Hounslow & District Wheelers

Devil
1 Louis MAGNANI Prestige VC
2 Jason PITT AW Cycles
3 Phil WATTS North Hants RC

Unknown Distance
1 Louis MAGNANI Prestige VC
2 Stuart STOW Hounslow & District Wheelers
3 Jason PITT AW Cycles

Sprint
1 Paul DAVIDOFF Team Terminator
2 Louis MAGNANI Prestige VC
3 Phil WATTS North Hants RC

AW Cycles 20k Endurance
1 Jason PITT AW Cycles
2 Stuart STOW Hounslow & District Wheelers
3 Louis MAGNANI Prestige VC

Ladies

10 Lap Scratch
1 Abbie DENTUS Welwyn Wheelers
2 Rohan BATTISON For Viored
3 Harriet OWEN Node4

Devil
1 Harriet OWEN Node4
2 Abbie DENTUS Welwyn Wheelers
3 Rohan BATTISON For Viored

Sprint
1 Harriet OWEN Node4
2 Abbie DENTUS Welwyn Wheelers
3 Rohan BATTISON For Viored

Unknown Distance
1 Harriet OWEN Node4
2 Abbie DENTUS Welwyn Wheelers

Under 16 AW Cycles 20k Endurance
1 Daniel LANSLEY Palmer Park Velo


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.