Seb Herrod finds grass to his liking as he claims victory in King’s Lynn MTB Club event
- Credit: Archant
Seb Herrod, sustaining his speed when others flagged, won the Three-Hour at the King's Lynn Mountain Bike Club races in the Brandon Park sector of Thetford Forest.
Herrod, now riding for oval chainwheel firm Absolute Black, opened a gap on frequent winner Andrew Cockburn on the long grass climb that every one of the 200–plus competitors will have painfully impressed on their memory.
The promoting club's Paul Ashby finished less than three minutes behind to win the Veterans' category, despite getting puncture sealant all over his glasses as it sprayed out of a large hole in his front tyre. Will Mitcham was top finisher from race sponsor Revel Outdoors. Racing on home ground, top man from Thetford MTB was Max Oxborrow, fifth Senior.
Conditions on the reasonably straightforward circuit were dry and nothing like as cold as last year's ice-bound event.
The 90-minute races saw women from Norwich-based Epic Orange take the top two places in the 18-39 age group – Jodie Cole finishing 47 seconds ahead of Catton triathlete Nicole Beck, who was riding only her second MTB race. Neither could quite match the speed of Vet Women's winner Laura Sampson (Sussed Out Suspension) and her daughter Caitlyn who burst on the scene to win the Female Junior category. Male Junior winner was Jacob Shailes from the organising club.
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Men's 90-minute winner was Patrick Biel of Dunstable-based Pedalworks, but second place was enough to ensure Norwich rider Matt Ellis joined team-mate Cole as guaranteed winners of their categories in the series overall. First Norfolk veteran was Paul Groombridge (Push Sport, third)
At the cyclo-cross National Championships in County Durham, Renvale's Sophie Wright crashed out after being squeezed against the barriers in the charge off the start line. However, there was an astonishing 10th championship win for Norfolk-raised Helen Wyman.
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Steve James (Renvale) took two top-10 placings. In the Vets race he was fourth – but on a podium as second in the 40-45 age category – while next day, racing as an Elite in rapidly changing conditions, he took ninth spot. Bethany Barnett (King's Lynn CC was 17th in the Under 16s.