Cycling: Madgwick and Barnett triumph at historic Mistley cyclo-cross
PUBLISHED: 14:03 24 October 2019 | UPDATED: 15:19 24 October 2019
Colchester Rovers' Mistley cyclo-cross, now re-named in honour of Neil Pears, Rovers member and doyen of the sport, saw big-race wins for Bethany Barnett and James Madgwick.
Barnett (LIV AWOL) who has only just stepped up from the Youth category, took the lead when Lauren Higham slipped at the log obstacle. Higham, winner of the first two Eastern League rounds, regained the front group, but was eventually half a minute adrift of Barnett.
Felixstowe rider Elvita Branch (Sussed Out) was third while a string of consistent high places - including sixth at Mistley - have made Martha Lebentz (Hadleigh CC) current Women's league leader.
James Madgwick fought off early challenges from, first, Ross Ticker and then Kieran Jarvis and survived a hairy moment when - as he put it - he 'almost binned it', to win the senior men's race by 35 seconds.
Madgwick's Bloodwise teammate Max Bolton moved steadily up through the leaders to take second overall and the Junior win. Jarvis, meanwhile, unwisely challenged a tree to a fight and came off worst, but just hung on the third place ahead of Ipswich rider Jack Parrish.
The Mistley event at Furze Hill, close by the Stour Estuary, is the most historic of the current cyclo-cross courses, a race venue for 40-odd years. With its steep descents and climbs among massive trees it continues to demand skill, courage and judgment like no other.
Iceni Velo riders Callum Laborde and Joseph Smith made the Under 16s race their own. Together all the way, well clear of the rest, Laborde took the win after bunny-hopping the hurdles just before the finish while Smith took the running option.
Alfie Aimey (DB Racing, fifth overall) was top Under 14 finisher with Harley Gregory (West Suffolk Wheelers) second U14.
Shaun Aldous (Renvale RT) very much the King of Furze Hill in his league-champion days, took the Vets 40-49 win. This after watching his five-year old twins Lily and Toby both take placings in the under 8s.
Early leader was Beccles rider Stuart Pryce (Strada Sport) whom Aldous overtook just after half distance, but who recovered to finish just eight seconds down.
While Callum Laborde had exploited hopping the hurdles to win the Youth event, Ben Lewis demonstrated the risks. Lewis, already a three-times winner in V40 this season, had a foot come unclipped in mid-air and crashed. He recovered to take third place, but Aldous's lead was never in danger.
At the other end of the V40-49 field Steve Grimwood, who is bringing the Masters World Championship to Ipswich next season, donned an Elmy Cycles Vest and re-acquainted himself with the Furze Hill course, scene of his early cyclo-cross rides a quarter of a century ago.
Jimmy Piper dominated the V50 race where Bury rider Mike Bowen put in an outstanding ride to take third place from among over 70 starters,
East Anglia contributed a wide range of entries among the 243 competitors in Cycling Time Trials' Closed Circuit Championship at the Thruxton motor sport centre in Hampshire.
Newmarket vet (in both senses of the word) Matthew Smith was sixth overall in 22:58 for the 11.7 miles.
CC Breckland member Mark Fairhead, 55 year-old organiser of the recent National Championship 12 Hour, finished 112th in 29:10, while Suffolk Youth Race Team's Abbey Thompson, the sole 10 year-old entry, beat four older girls to finish in 31:51.
- Off-Road enthusiasts looking to fill a blank weekend in the local racing programme will find Woodbridge Rotary Ruff Stuff 25 strategically placed on Sunday 17th November.
Headquarters is Butley Village Hall, seven miles east of Woodbridge, IP12 3PA
The main route is 25 miles, with an optional five mile add-on, or a shorter 10 mile alterative.
Riders will be started at intervals between 9.30 and 10 am, either singly, or in groups. It is not a race - but you do get a finish time.
More details at www.woodbridgerotary.org.uk
RESULT COLCHESTER ROVERS NEIL PEARS CYCLO-CROSS, Mistley:
Senior/Junior: 1 James Madgwick (Bloodwise QSW),2 Max Bolton( Bloodwise/QSW,1st Junior), 3 Kieran Jarvis (Cycle Team OnForm),4 Jack Parrish (Forest Side Riders), 5 Ross Tricker (ViCiOUS VELO), 6 Lloyd Chapman (ViCiOUS VELO),
Women: 1 Bethany Barnett (Liv Awol),2 Lauren Higham (Team LDN), 3 Elvita Branch (Sussed Out), 4 Harley Pell (Hargroves Cycles) 5 Katie Scotter (ViCiOUS VELO), 6 Martha Lebentz (Hadleigh Cycling Club)
Veteran Men 40-49: 1 Shaun Aldous (Renvale RT), 2 Stuart Pryce (Strada-Sport), 3 Ben Lewis (Forest Side Riders), 4 Glenn Davey (Stowmarket & District CC), 5 Robert Purcell (NVCC), 6 Andy Hurst (Amis Velo).
Veteran Men 50+: 1 Jimmy Piper (Renvale RT), 2 Ian Newby (Diss & District CC), 3 M Bowen (Transition RT), 4 Clive Harrison (Ford CC), 5 Richard Muchmore (Renvale RT),6 Ben Paton (Amis Velo).
Youth: 1 Callum Laborde (Iceni Velo), 2 Joseph Smith (Iceni Velo), 3 Yani Angelo Djelil (Una Forza Racing) 4 Mark Lightfoot (Welwyn Wheelers), 5 Alfie Amey (DB Racing, 1st U14), 6 Josh Palfreyman (Cambridge Junior CC),18 Carys Lloyd (VC Londres, 1st Girl), 27 Lucy Wollaston (VC Londres, 1st U4/Girl).