All about survival at Mallory Park

"The coldest race I have ever done," said Tim Butler, of round three of the National Trophy cyclo-cross series at Mallory Park where he contested the 50+ veterans category.

"The coldest race I have ever done," said Tim Butler, of round three of the National Trophy cyclo-cross series at Mallory Park where he contested the 50+ veterans category.

Butler, who has been racing since 1970, took 12th place among the 32 who made it to the end of the over-50s race.

The temperature was around two or three degrees centigrade but the chill factor from strong winds and driving rain made it feel much colder. As the day progressed the rain turned the course to liquid mud. This course was to some extent improvised, due to building work in progress, and used part of the motor racing circuit combined with climbs and descents laid out on the spectator banks alongside.

"It was a case of those who made the least mistakes on the off-camber sections survived," said Butler.

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The youth race saw some tough performances from riders from the east - Luke Newby making an excellent start and holding fourth after one lap. His strength seemed to evaporate in mid race - a common experience on this extraordinary day, but he recovered to finish seventh, exactly two minutes behind winner Thomas Moses. This was 52 seconds closer than the gap last time they met in round two at Ipswich.

Hugo Robinson, who lives near Debenham, had a great ride, romping up the climbs and winning the under-14 class in this national race. More than four minutes behind Moses at Ipswich, Robinson was just 1:38 down at Mallory. Tom Castle (Ipswich BC) was 13th and Matt Cook (Mildenhall CC) 25th.

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Jen Ives (Interbike RT) continued her good run in the women's races, taking sixth place.

Cold and wet from helping earlier in the day, Eastern League leader Nathan Miller and reigning champion Shaun Aldous retired from the senior race. Craig Beech kept going to take 39th place.

The Norwich- based East Anglian Cycling Club held its 86th dinner and prize presentation in Costessey where superfast veteran time-trialist Ron Back was guest of honour.

Horsford rider Paul Lynch won the President's Cup as short distance best all-rounder, the Tens Cup for the best ten rides at 10 miles and the Hill Climb Cup. In between races he finds time to organise several of the club's generous programme of open time trials.

Phil Hollingsworth stepped up for the award for best veteran while Guy Stevens, the lively main contributor to the club's website, won the Crook Cup for the fastest 25 of the year - 57minutes 9 seconds.

The Norfolk Road Club has reached the end of the road. The club was "mothballed" some years ago and the trustees have decided it is time to close the books.

There is to be a final evening of celebration and reminiscences next Wednesday, November 28, at the CTC clubroom, behind Mile Cross Methodist Church, Aylsham Road, Norwich, 8 to 10pm. All are welcome. Those with photographs which could be copied for a Powerpoint presentation are asked to ring Andy Hurrell on 01603 403576.

Founded in 1938, the NRC specifically catered for members of the Cyclists' Touring Club who wished to race. The club's history included particularly prosperous periods in the late 1950s and the early 1980s.

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