Reading Cycling Club press report, week ending 24/1/10

Reading Cycling Club press report, week ending 24/1/10

Reading Cycling Club press report, week ending 24/1/10 150 150 Reading Cycling Club

Circuit racing news.

Reading’s Joe Harris continued his successful campaign in the Hog Hill
circuit winter league: “The race started fast with a few breaks trying
to go early, and the peloton responded by increasing the pace to chase
down the breaks. The pack split in the middle of the race and I was
caught out in the second group. We worked hard together to get the group
back together. At seven laps to go a dangerous move went with a couple
of the stronger riders. I pushed to the front and rode hard with some of
the other riders and we closed the gap. As the bunch rejoined the front
group, three racers accelerated hard and broke off the front. My line
was blocked so I had to delay my chase. I rode off the front of the
bunch and I was between the two groups chasing down the leading group,
as I came up the hill I realised my front tyre was going down and I had
punctured. Fortunately this was just before the five laps to go board so
under the rules I could take a lap out to change wheels and rejoin the
group. When I rejoined I went to bridge the gap again and rode in the
middle for a couple of laps until I realised the leaders were pulling
away and the bunch was closing me down. I eased up and rejoined the
bunch, the three leading riders stayed away until the finish and the
bunch sprinted for the remaining places. I came over the line in 8th
place maintaining my consistency, however I’m determined to be higher up
the results next week!”

Reading CC’s intrepid veteran road racer Wayne Thomas stepped up his
2010 season at the weekend competing in two circuit races on the same
An early start on Saturday saw Thomas at the opening race of the Upavon
Winter Series. Kicking off at 0900, thirty six 3rd and 4th cat riders
showed distinct signs of frustration that the first two events were
cancelled due to bad weather. Within the first 400m it seemed that it
might be “game over” for most of the field as ten riders immediately
broke clear, with Thomas being the last to join them. However, the
peleton decided otherwise, and the group were all together after another
1km.The scene was now set for a quick and very active race, with a
number of small breakaways almost every lap of the 3.3km circuit. Whilst
Thomas felt that it was harder than he had expected, he was never in
difficulty and maintained a top ten position for much of the race. The
finish is on an uphill 600m section, making it both tough and difficult
to judge your lunge for the line. Having dealt with it well on the last
few laps Thomas was gaining confidence of a good finish. On the final
ascent to the finish, the sprint started at 500 metres, making it a long
effort. In the final 50metres Thomas realised that a number had “shot
their bolt” and surged past four riders to get sixth place.

A quick dash down the M4 towards London, and Thomas was lining up for
the 1300 start at the Hillingdon circuit alongside nearly 50 other
competitors in the 3rd cat race.The front of the peleton shot off at a
ferocious pace, and this was sustained for 4-5 laps before recognition
set in that no-one was being allowed to breakaway today. With a strong
pace being maintained, the 4th cat group (another 50 riders) were caught
and passed well inside the half hour. At the 50 minute mark, the 5 laps
to go board was displayed and the peleton began to gird its loins for
the last few hectic laps.
With much of the peleton still together, Thomas was happy to finish his
second race of the day in a mid bunch position.

Thomas commented “This early in the season I really was not too sure how
I would fare in two races, less than three hours apart. I coped well and
getting sixth at Upavon, my best result at this circuit, was a major
confidence booster”.

All groups leave Reading Market Place at 9am on Sundays.

Roderick MacFadyen
Reading Cycling Club

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