Port Talbot Wheelers gear up to host Welsh Circuit Race Championships on 'classic' seafront setting

Port Talbot Wheelers gear up to host Welsh Circuit Race Championships on 'classic' seafront setting


Preview: Hannah Pole

Porthcawl Seafront Criteriums - incorporating Welsh Circuit Race Championships

Around 200 cyclists are set to turn out along Porthcawl seafront on Sunday when a major cycle event is scheduled to revive cycle racing in the town, attracting dozens of visitors.  

The Porthcawl Seafront Criteriums, taking place on Sunday, 15 September, will feature a series of exciting races through the town centre on a classic closed-road 1.2km street circuit, culminating in the Senior Welsh Circuit Race Championships.

The racing schedule has been updated to allow for road closure and is confirmed as:

U8                   1.30    10min

U10                 13.45   15min

U12                 14.05   20min

U14                 15.30   25min

U16                 16:00   30min 

Vets/Ladies     16.40   40min + 5 laps

2/3/4                17:30   45min + 5 laps (50mins minimum)

E/1/2                18:30   55min + 5 laps (60mins minimum)

Race sign on opens at 12:00 midday. 

The final presentation is expected to take place at 7.30pm. Roads will be re-opened to traffic at 8pm.

Race inspired by famous Milk Race

The Championships were awarded to Porthcawl following a successful bid by local cycling club, Port Talbot Wheelers. It is the first time cycle racing has returned to the town in more than 10 years.

Porthcawl once attracted some of the most famous cycle races to its picturesque promenade, dating back to stage races held just after the Second World War.

It includes the historic Tour of Britain ‘Milk Race’ held in 1959, when Porthcawl welcomed scores of talented riders to the finish line in a race covering 110 miles of gruelling roads from Aberystwyth, including the notorious Bwlch-Y-Groes mountain pass.

One of the last recorded races in the town took place in 1987, won by Englishman Robert Downs .

David Lloyd, a member of Port Talbot Wheelers, came up with the idea to re-stage competitive racing in the town with support from a Bridgend County Borough Council and Welsh Cycling.

He said: “I remember as a child watching some spectacular cycle racing on the promenade, and I feel really proud to have the support of both local councils to help revive street racing at Porthcawl.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for children to cycle on a closed road in front of a crowd. The setting is really exciting for spectators and I hope the local community come out on the day to show their support. It would have been impossible to promote this event without the help of local business and thanks must go to all those who’ve sponsored the event.”

Great day for riders and spectators

The event offers riders fully closed, fun and fast-paced street racing along one of south Wales' most famous seafront settings in front of the crowds, and a chance to finish the road circuit season in style.

Racing will follow a fast and fun street circuit along the main promenade with some technical turns that weave through the town centre, before returning along the promenade.

With the start and finish located just along the main seafront, spectators will be able to catch all the action whilst soaking up the many cafés, bars, restaurants and hotels along the promenade, with spectacular views over the Bristol Channel.

Last year’s Welsh Circuit Championships proved a thrilling showdown, showcasing some of Wales’ top talent, with current senior Welsh Champion and title holder Dale Appleby (Metaltek – Knights of Old Racing Team) sealing victory.  

View the full schedule of racing and information on the British Cycling Online Calendar.

Race sponsors:

Welsh Cycling and British Cycling    

Bridgend County Borough Council

Pothcawl Town Council

South Wales Police

C.J. Construction                                                

Martin Bush Healthcare        

C.M. Utilities                                                        

The Pier                             

Piccolo Bar and the Sidoli Family                   

Port Talbot Wheelers                                         

Jeremy Isaacs Live Life Smiling                     

Speedy Hire                                                         

Huw Jones Finnegan’s Fish & Chips

The Porthcawl Hotel                                          

Stuart Hall European Cycling Holidays