Sunday, 3 May 2015

GS Vecchi LVRC Race

Paul pulls through on a dreadful day

May has arrived. In calendar terms only for now. Today saw the GS Vecchi Race run in very difficult conditions, not least for the organiser, Terry Morgan who had to switch courses late in the day, instruct marshals not to wave flags and keep everything running smoothly as several waves of torrential rain gusted across the course. Thanks Terry.

Neil's wondering how he can keep the dirt off the car seats
The weather put one or two off but our three riders made the start line. Just. Neil & Baynesy were ejected from a local pub car park whilst getting ready meaning they had to join the race on the neutralised section, but the junction was made and all settled down, well, 'settled' doesn't really seem appropriate. We will, however, not succumb to use of the 'E' word.

A tough climb on each of 7 laps of a short-ish 8 mile circuit? "Staccato," said Ian, "Challenging," said Paul. Neil? He was was too busy cleaning his mouth out.

Vince Devine of Finchley set the agenda in the A's as expected. Unexpectedly, his 1st escape was reeled in after 2 laps, but it wasn't long before he went again, along with a few other s for company. Neil admits he was caught napping, "Not that I'm sure I had the legs either though," he adds. The remainder of his race was spent being generally a bit narky, knowing that the winning places were filled by the front group and wishing he'd given it everything to go with Phil Starr of Python RT when he launched a classy bridging move. 3/10

Baynesy dishes some dirt
Baynesy continued his rising form with some strong moves and was always near the front on the climb. Except when the break went. Or when he got caught behind a crash.  Then he punctured with two to go and wore out a pair of cleats when a tube donation went wrong. Game over.

he does it again - top result and podium for Paul

Paul rolled round without the drama of the A's in group C in characteristic style.

Understated as ever, he mentioned that it was a bit of a shame he might have to clean the bike when he got home. Oh yes, he took 3rd place in group C. Smooth.

So a gritty performance by all, but the cream rose to the top as it tends to do. Thanks to Paul Burgoine for some seriously good pics - more on his zenfolio site.

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.