Saturday, 18 April 2015

Win for John Lacey at the Virgin Active Road Race

St Jean up to speed on first outing

John doesn't like hills. Strangely, he has spent the early weeks of the season masochistically riding some hilly TTs for the Hemel, although he did dodge the Sid Latchford, very kindly offering to marshal that day.

So, he's hidden his form under something of a bushel, until last Tuesday when a speed training session exposed his resurgent athleticism. We kept that under wraps of course...

On to today, and he was obviously feeling strong, piling straight into the early break with Graham Dolby on the first lap. Joined by one more, the trio stayed together for most of the race. 

speed session last week. Don't worry, he does have a bike in team colours - thanks Eugene Rack for the pic

This was surprising because the gruppo was being blown apart by the high pace as they tried to manage the gap. The front of this group numbered only 7 by the last lap including our Paul who was playing things canny as usual and keeping his powder dry. 
gratuitous sponsor promo pic

They caught John's trio in plenty of time for the finale and it looked like a regular sprint finish was on the cards but John had prepared his own script and in characteristically 'Jean Diesel' style, he launched of the front just before the Ultimo Chilometro: "The guy on my wheel was napping, I had done a quick recce and I knew it was a fast finish which suits me - flat tailwind." And suit him it did - a massive solo effort propelled him over the line in fine style.

Paul had saved a lot of energy playing the team game in the main group so he was ready for the sprint, but couldn't quite get past Phil Rayner, taking 3rd place. "No real surprise there really," he reflects. "He's an ex international sprint specialist so I'm not too unhappy." 

*sponsor message* Paul was trialling his new tmgpro VR001 aero jersey. This obviously didn't get him the win but his verdict on the new team issue? "Perfect". 

Monday, 13 April 2015

Luke on the Podium again

the ding dong continues

One of the first drag strip outings for the Cronomen yesterday, and Luke got the better of Ross this week at the Beds Road F1b/25. By one second. Ross has retreated to the garage for a strip down, relube and rebuild (the bike, that is). Thanks, as ever, to Davey Jones for the pics.

Ross - lower
Luke - faster
Luke was on the podium with 55:20, Ross ('obvs') 55:21, Tony at 1:01:53 (not overjoyed) and Steve at 1:02:47 (definitely not overjoyed).

Following last week's team win over Arbis-Colbert at the Icknield, we've noticed a new rider appeared on the result sheet for this event. Further research on Simon Norman reveals a 'new signing'. They're clearly relishing the challenge...

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Team Win at the Icknield

Shaking off Friday's disappointment
rough weather and then a detached crank - bad luck at the Welwyn Hilly for Ross on Friday

After the miserable weather of Good Friday at the Welwyn Hilly, our Cronomen bounced back  at one of our most local events on Sunday.

er, is that a smile Luke?
 The Icknield Hilly is always a good opportunity to refresh local rivalries after the winter layoff, although our road contingent steered clear this year. 

Helping to headline the result was Ross with 44:44, edging out brother Luke by 12 seconds. Starting the season in fine form, Tony May put in a very strong ride which lifted us above local opponents Arbis-Colbert race team to take the team prize by more than a minute. In fact, we would have still had the win with Steve Clarke's time, only 29 seconds behind. 

Finally, Darren Powell took to the start line for the first time this season. With a time of 52:03, he was only just into the bottom half of the result and is clearly starting from a decent level.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Top Tens in the Sid Latchford

Luke gets the upper hand

It was the first day of British Summer Time yesterday but despite the mild temperatures, the weather was quite simply awful. 50mph+ gusts of wind and driving heavy rain were not conducive to fast times.

We had two non-starters out of 5 on the start sheet and thankfully they were not the strongest 2 so we came up 2nd in the team competition. 5th, 7th and 11th was a great team performance and the field was considerably stronger than last year, with Arctic-Tacx Racing Team turning out in force. It's no shame losing the top spot to them.
1 Arctic Tacx RT 2:39:10
2 TMG Horizon CT 2:46:26
3 Icknield RC 2:55:35
4 Hemel Hempstead 2:58:43
5 Berkhamstead CC 3:03:39
6 Berkhamstead CC 3:11:15
7 Hemel Hempstead 3:14:18
8 Bossard Whs 3:18:15
9 Bossard Whs 3:47:51

Won by none other than former National Hill Climb Champion Tejvan Pettinger of Sri Chinmoy CT, the event has grown dramatically since its first running last year. With the team at Hemel Hempstead Cycling Club doing a great job, it looks set to become the definitive early season 'Hard Riding' event.

Ross trying to stay upright on The Ivinghoe Beacon hairpin

1 80 Tejvan Pettinger Sri Chinmoy CT 0:51:25
2 90 Michael Broadwith Arctic Tacx RT 0:51:32
3 75 Danny Axford Arctic Tacx RT 0:53:21
4 65 Richard Wood Arbis-Colbert 0:53:52
5 81 Luke Clarke TMG Horizon CT 0:54:09
6 66 Tim Bayley Arctic Tacx RT 0:54:17
7 60 Ross Clarke TMG Horizon CT 0:55:00
8 48 Jason Green Beds Road CC 0:55:17
9 76 Tim Davies Icknield RC 0:55:19
10 69 Harry Paine Team Corley Cycles 0:56:40
11 72 Paul Caton TMG Horizon CT 0:57:17
12 33 Matthew Bond Kenton RC 0:57:19
13 31 Jon Friend Beds Road CC 0:57:24
14 25 Ian Turner North Road CC 0:57:53
15 71 John Lacey Hemel Hempstd CC 0:57:54
16 67 James Fox CC Luton 0:58:00
17 57 Ben Nichol High Wycombe CC 0:58:07
18 77 Mike Wragg Arbis-Colbert 0:58:10
19 78 Geoff Reynolds Hemel Hempstd CC 0:58:24
20 45 Grant Orsborn Icknield RC 0:58:30 

After losing the Millennium Trophy to Ross last year, Luke seems to be back in force, taking over 50 seconds out of his older brother.
5th Place for Luke - our fastest rider
His 54:09 includes a smashed rear disc wheel - the result of an argument with a pothole: "It was pretty crazy out there today," he said afterwards. The disc made it really tough - you were fighting the wind in so many places."

Paul Caton agreed: "It was so nice to get back to a warm HQ. Top marks to the organisers who had the great idea of using the Red Lion." Thanks also to Davey Jones for the pics.

Finally, an honourable mention to 'our' Ian Baynes and family who helped out with the marshalling at Dagnall roundabout. They had to put up with some very difficult conditions too.