It’s a happy New Year for Hornett
Neil Hornett won the CC Breckland New Year's Day ten-mile time trial in a time that most people would be glad to do in mid-summer – 21:56.
'I'd rather see the New Year in on a bike,' said the regular visitor to this out-of-season race.
Road conditions on the Morley to Wymondham and back course were reasonable and it was not so cold as of late. Verdicts of 'hard both ways' from some participants may have had some relation to personal states of fitness or other causes.
Liam Gentry was handicapped by the brakes of his new bike hanging against the wheel, but still took fourth place in 22:47 while VC Baracchi clubmate Nick Esser had a pre-race panic when he punctured on his warm-up, though another competitor saved the day with a spare wheel.
Chris Nudds, 62, was third overall and best veteran on age standard with his 22:36 ride. Sally Withey (VC Norwich) was fastest woman in 26:30 while Godric CC tricyclists Adrian Perkin (27:42) and John Dupen (27:45) look to be continuing last season's close rivalry. Diss CC pair Mark Ready (seventh in 24:37) and Paul White (eighth in 25:00) are clearly getting fit for the new season.
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In the XRT/Elmy Cycles cyclo-cross Hugo Robinson gave the team a home win and showed that he is peaking in fitness at the right time – with the National Championships next weekend. Robinson however, is a junior, indeed is only just 16.
The senior league championship is set to be decided in the last race at Mistley on January 24. At the moment Shaun Aldous (Extreme Sports Therapy) and Andy Nichols (Cambridge University CC) are tied at the top of the senior table.
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Neither had a good ride at Ipswich, finishing eighth and ninth respectively. Ian Newby was fastest of the Diss CC riders, finishing two places ahead of Richard Dunnett.
The tightest finish of the day was in the veterans' race where Phil Buick of Wymondham held on by a whisker as Bruce Robinson (Shaftesbury CC) overhauled him on the fast, flat finishing straight. Buick was quicker on the technical sections which are dominant on the spectacular Foxhall Heath course, much of which is on the side of a mini-ravine just east of Ipswich. Zak Coleman (Great Yarmouth CC) was the first local rider in the Under-12s.
The season of reliability trials is upon us and locally the East Anglian CC 50 mile event is the opener.
Progressively faster groups will leave Horsford Church Rooms between 8.30 and 9.30am on Sunday. Then on Sunday, January 16 the VC Baracchi 50 milers will start from Oulton Community Centre between 9 and 10 am. Details: John Thompson email@example.com.
• Cyclists across the region will be wishing a speedy recovery to Godric CC timekeeper Doreen Stevenson who is in hospital following a fall while shopping in Harleston.