2019 Welsh Championships: Weekend round-up

2019 Welsh Championships: Weekend round-up

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Gruffudd Lewis (Ribble Pro Cycling) and Elizabeth Bennett (Campinense – Velo Performance) took home the Welsh national jersey in the men and women’s road race at our Welsh Championship weekend in Ruthin on Sunday.

Whilst on the Saturday, in time trial it was Anna Morris (Team Velotec) who won the women’s event with a time of 1:03:03 while Ioan Smallwood (Cardiff Ajax CC) won the men’s event stopping the clock at 56:22 a second ahead George Evans (ActiveEdge Race Team).

This year, our champs was held in North Wales, in the historic town of Ruthin and over the course of the two days spectators were treated to some great action as Welsh Champs fever well and truly hit Ruthin.

Super Saturday as Morris and Smallwood reign supreme whilst Owain Roberts won the junior title

On Saturday it was all about the time trial, and with a challenging course and some top contenders across the different categories it was always going to be a battle for the red and green jersey.

As a precursor to the road races Saturday was always going to be an interesting day as it was all about the battle against the clock, and in the end it turned into a great day of racing as there were some great performances across the board.

The women masters (50+) jersey was won by Sally Cunliffe (Ruthin Cycling Club) with a time of 01:15:00 whilst the women’s masters (40+) was won by Emma Sarjeant (Hafren CC) stopping the clock at 01:09:37.

For Gareth McGuinness (Clwb Beicio Egni) it was a superb day on the TT bike as he took home the men masters (50+) jersey winning with an impressive time of 1:01:40. The men’s masters (40+) was won by David Williams (Velotik Racing Team) with a time of 58:54.

For the juniors it was Owain Roberts (Backstedt Cycling) who took home the coveted jersey with a time of 01:00:40 ahead of Christopher Mann (Marsh Tracks Racing) and Thomas Harrington (Abergavenny Road Club).

Sensational Sunday sees Ruthin town transformed as the Welsh Champs rolled into town

After the successful Saturday, attention turned the road champs on the Sunday where seven road Welsh champs were waiting to be crowned.

The course was designed to provide the riders with a challenging course, with the Nant Y Garth pass being the centre piece of the course. The women took two passes of the tricky climb with the men taking in three passes of the climb.

And with our tight and technical 8km closed road circuit thrown in the course was all about providing exciting racing and that certainly proved to be the case as Lewis took home the victory in the men’s race with a close sprint finish ahead of Sion Harlow (Team PB Performance) and James Phillips (BIKESTRONG-KTM) after what was a gruelling day out on the undulating roads of North Wales.

In the women’s race Bennett finished ahead of Isabel Ellis (SaF Zaisseng) and Rebecca Richardson (Brother.uk Fusion) to claim the national jersey after what was an exciting race, which saw Bennett win the sprint finish.

In the junior women’s race it was the imperious Elynor Backstedt (Storey Racing) who just got the better of the duo from Liv Cycling Club-Halo Eluned King and Ella Barnwell to claim another win to add to her palmares.

The winner of the junior men's race was Iwan Evans in what another exciting race. Heading into the final lap, Evans, Owain Roberts and James Codd (Backstedt Cycling) were neck and neck, but it was Evans who took the win with a thrilling sprint finish.

In the women’s masters (40+) race, Jessica Evans (Assos Equipe UK) who finished second in the TT made up for that near miss by claiming victory in the road race pipping Cheri Mills to the line.

In the men’s masters (50+) it was Terry Glynn (Graham Weigh Racing) who took home another close sprint finish ahead of John Lindsay (SKCC) and Ieuan Davies (Ystwyth Cycling Club). For the men master (40+) Frazer White (Pontypool RCC) bucked the trend by getting clear of the peloton around the closing circuit and riding solo to the line. Glyndwr Griffiths (73Degrees CC) and Ian Bendall (Tim Beicio IBE) made up the rest of the podium.

As we headed into the final race of the day, all eyes were on the senior men’s to see who would come out on top. Heading over the Nant Y Garth twice, the race was expected to be animated right from the get go.

With a few lone attacks not sticking, eventually the break was established with six riders getting clear. Over the course of the race the six managed to stay clear, with their lead rising to over a minute at its highest.

There were attempts to reel them in, but as the race hit the finishing circuit the attempts by the peloton were unsuccessful and with five laps to go, the group which contained the eventual winners would go on to contest the finish.

With time running out, three riders managed to escape the clutches of the peloton to try and bring back the leaders. But it wasn’t to be as Lewis followed up his second place at the Criterium championships last week with a first place finish, to take the jersey he won back in 2011.

James Tillett (Wales Racing Academy) who finished ninth in the road race said: "The course itself didn't really suit a particular style of rider which left the championship title wide open.

"I thought the finishing circuit was a nice addition to the course, you could feel a lift in atmosphere every time we rode through Ruthin and it was great to see and hear so many supporters," Tillett said.

To browse through and buy any photos from our event photographer SportPicturesCymru please click here

TT results can be found here

Official results for Women & Masters can be found here

Official results for the Senior & Juniors can be found here

2019 Welsh Championship Road Race results (top three)

Senior Men’s

Gruffudd Lewis

RIbble Pro Cycling

Sion Harlow

Team PB Performance

James Phillips


Senior Women’s

Elizabeth Bennett

Campinense-Velo Performance

Isabel Ellis

SaF Zaiisseng

Rebecca Richardson

Brother.uk Fusion

Men Masters (50+)

Terry Glynn

Graham Weigh Racing

John Lindsay


Ieuan Davies

Ystwyth Cycling Club

Women Masters (40+)

Jessica Evans

Assos Equipe UK

Cheri Mills

Wrexham Roads Club

Men Masters (40+)

Frazer White

Pontypool RCC

Glyndwr Griffiths

73Degrees CC

Ian Bendall

Tim Beicio IBE

Junior Women

Elynor Backstedt

Storey Racing

Eluned King

Liv Cycling Club – Halo

Ella Barnwell

Liv Cycling Club – Halo

Junior Men

Iwan Evans

The Bulls

Owain Roberts

Backstedt Cycling

James Codd

Backstedt Cycling