Round 5 of the NDCXL travelled to Bingham this weekend, where we had an action packed day of racing and the course, which is perhaps the most technical of the year was well constructed to provide a multitude of off camber sections to test the riders’ technical capabilities.
In the senior men’s race, right from the gun it was previous NDCXL winners George Thompson from Sleaford Wheelers and Dave Fletcher (Sherwood Pines Cycles) who established the early lead and maintained this gap, battling hard throughout the race. Fletcher suffered an unfortunate mechanical issue in the latter parts of the race and was unable to re close the gap after losing a few seconds. Thompson eventually took the win by 25 seconds from 2nd place Fletcher. Lee Shunburne of Fossa racing round out the top 3 in the senior category. Josh Waters (Mercia CC – Lloyds Cycles) was first of the U23s.
In the junior race, Cameron Orr (SF racing) capitalised on a great start and charged his way round the course to take the win catching and passing all but two of the Seniors, despite their 30s head start (Cameron features in this week’s interviews! – listen below). Toby Barnes from Lichfield City CC chased hard and took a well deserved second place, with Steve Poole Plant Hire/Raleigh rider Matthew Ellis taking third spot.
The front of the women’s race was, in traditional style, dominated by Diane Lee from Cannondale girls who took a convincing win. Veteran National Champion Maddi Smith (Bolsover & District CC) worked hard but couldn’t close the gap on Lee, taking second place. Team Empella’s Kate George took third place. Close racing was evident right through the senior women’s field of 36, with incidents including emergency reattachment of loose cleats for Louise Wainwright. Team Empella took wins in the U23, and FV50 with Tiffany and Tracey Fletcher and also in FV60 from Hilary Johnson. Joni Wildman (Nottingham Clarion) took the FJun win, finishing ahead of Empella’s Xan Crees for the first time since her return to NDCXL competition this season.
In the V40 men’s race, a lead was established early on by Matt Barrett (Renvale RT), Daniel Alexander (Zepnat RT) and Andy Collis (Bicicelo). The trio got a small gap on the rest of the field leading out onto the second lap, being chased by a group led by Matthew Crouch from Fossa Racing. Barrett attacked and opened a gap, with the pace too much for Collis dropping off the lead. Barrett eventually took the win, Danny Alexander holding onto his second place (and first V45) with Crouch upping the pace in the second half of the race to take the third place spot.
Zepnat’s Pete Middleton looked effortless from the off in the V50 race to take the win from Kirby Bennet (Team JewsonMIRacing-Polypipe) who had ridden well into the top 10 of the V40 field despite their delayed start. Bennet was also first V55. A hard fought battle between Chris Green (Matlock CC) and Peter Busby from Team JewsonMIRacing-Polypipe came down to the last lap, Green able to eventually take third place and Busby fourth.
The youth U16M race was a nail biting contest between Finn Mansfield (The MI Racing Academy) and Jake Norton of Spalding Cycling Club. After an initlal leading group of six was whittled down to three, Marcus Holmes had a spectacular crash caused by a mechanical. Norton and Mansfield took their chance and pressed on to the final lap where they were together taking the bell. Mansfield came out on top in the end to take his second NDCXL win of the season, Norton rolled in second. Pedalsport CC’s Joe Coukham claimed third.
The U14M race saw a flying Finlay Pickering from Hull Thursday RC build on a solid start to take the win by 30 seconds. Joshua Giddings from The MI Racing Academy cruised home to take second, whilst third place went to Ben Chilton of Derby Mercury.
In the U16G race, Poppy Wildman (SF Racing) made a welcome return to the league she has raced since being an U12, and set a tempo too hot for the rest of the field to handle, storming away to a convincing win. Team Empella’s Amo Wayte took second place, with third place going to Sarah Briggs from Matlock CC.
The U14G race saw Lotta Mansfield of The MI Racing Academy crush the rest of the field and took the top spot, being the only U14G to finish on the same lap as her brother who had already won the U16s (hear an interview with them both in the audio!). Kings Lynn CC rider Bethany Barnett took second place holding off Cycle Derby CC’s Lucy Buckely.
Thanks to VC Notts for another iconic race in a classic NDCXL venue.
Report: Sam Marriot
Over 60 under 9s assembled on the start line at Bingham with nearly 20 minutes to go before the off. The anticipation, excitement and nerves building to an explosive crescendo.
On the starters whistle we had the familiar sight of the Bolsover and District CC trio of George Cooper, Jacob Steed and Dillon Preece disappearing into the distance and gaining a significant gap on the rest of the field. George held off several attacks from Jacob over the opening lap and had to relinquish the lead on the second lap. This was short lived as Jacob fell exiting a tight corner and George grabbed his chance. The two BDCC riders traded blows again on the final lap with Jacob again coming past on the technical corners and this time staying upright to take the win by 5 seconds over George with their teammate Dillon a further 25 seconds back in 3rd
14 girls took to the start line this week with Gemma Newall (Cycle Derby CC) and Eleanor Gordon (Matlock CC) inseparable for most of the race and well ahead of the other girls. Gemma finally claiming the victory finishing 1st girl and 22nd overall with Eleanor 6 seconds back in 2nd and 23rd place overall, Matilda Herries (4 Life Tri Club) was a distant 3rd
The course at Bingham is always a favourite with the more technically proficient under 12s as it includes the fearsome ‘bank of doom’ and with fairly dry conditions was eminently rideable this year.
Ben Marsh (Heanor Clarion CC) the series leader showed his power and skill from the off building a commanding lead and lapping almost 10 seconds quicker than his rivals. An intriguing battle was taking place behind Ben between Joshua Jackson (Lyme RC), Luke Kininmonth (Derby Mercury RC) and Dom Switzer (Welland Valley CC). These three riders tested each other on the bank each lap but were generally inseparable and it seemed obvious that we were building for a sprint for 2nd and 3rd behind Ben. With half a lap to go the race changed dramatically as Ben suffered a mechanical and while struggling to refit a loose rear wheel which had jammed against the frame saw the win evaporate as the the chasing trio swept passed. We now had a real sprint for the top 3 places as Ben remounted now in 4th and with 400 meters to go put the hammer down in hot pursuit unfortunately running out of track to bridge the gap. Joshua Jackson eventually claimed the win with Dom Switzer 2nd and Luke Kininmonth 3rd.
The girls race contained 17 riders and was dominated by Libby Bell (Leicester Forest CC) 1st girl and 11th overall who took an early lead from Harriet Limb (Matlock CC) 2nd girl and 13th overall. Both girls rode the more technical sections on the bank with ease only dismounting to avoid lapped riders. Evie Steed (Bolsover and District CC) was getting quicker each lap and finished a strong 3rd and 17th overall 25 seconds down on Harriet.
Report: Dominic Limb