RECORD RIDES FOR CHAMPIONSHIP `12` WINNERS
They came intending to take the top spots along with Competition Records and they did. The delay in the appearance of the official result must have left Adam Duggleby (Vive le Velo) and Alice Lethbridge (Drag2Zero) with a few sleepless nights. But it all came out alright in the end. Both had entered the 2018 RTTC 12-hour Time Trial National Championship on the H12/8 with high hopes and confident that the Competition Records were within grasp.
Lethbridge was already the current women’s record holder after notching up 285.64 miles to win last year’s `12` title and Duggleby had already got within a whisker of the Andy Wilkinson’s men’s record of 317.97 miles, set in 2012, when he won last year’s CC Breckland `12` with 317.343 miles.
Opposition in the Farnborough & Camberley CC promoted championship this year included Richard Bideau (Pendle Forest CC), Mark Turnbull (TORQ Performance), Andy Jackson (AeroCoach) and Kieron Davies (Drag2Zero) making his debut at the distance.
Riders faced a number of laps of a 20-mile circuit of the A31, near Alton, Hampshire, before they were on the finishing circuit of just over 14 miles, still on the A31. The road surfaces left something to be desired, rutted and giving riders an uneven ride, some even pulled out complaining of their arms getting a battering. Andy Jackson pulled out complaining of back trouble.
Duggleby laid an early marker with 43.5 miles covered in 1-34-32, two minutes up on Davies while Jackson was on 1-37-27, Bideau 1-40-17 and Turnbull 1-40-46. Duggleby piled on the pressure and was never headed as he headed in to the record books with 321.446 miles.
Davies, meanwhile, had already finished and his 319.689 miles gave him the Competition record until Duggleby pulled to a halt. That was first and second sorted. The third place and Bronze Medal went to outsider Richard Gildea (Didcot Phoenix CC) with 301.19 miles.
Back in the event headquarters in Alton Assembly Rooms Duggleby certainly did not look the worse for wear. “I found it hard to start with a head wind up the course, then it was not so hard coming back. I felt a lot better for the last 90 minutes,” he said. “The roads were rough but no worse than when I rode the CC Breckland last year.”
His ride was not without trouble, “I felt the front wheel going down but I got a wheel change.” He had not planned to ride the National `12`. “But when I learned that Marcin Bialblocki was going to ride the `10`, `25` and 50-mile Championships it didn’t leave me much choice if I wanted to win a championship,” he said. He reckoned he had covered 322-3 miles so he was not far out when the official result was published.
Taking the women’s title for the second successive year, Lethbridge was sure she had bettered her 285.64 miles of 2017. “Around 290 this time I think, that was my target. I did some 10 laps on the big circuit the rest on the finishing circuit where the wind seemed to have picked up,” Lethbridge said.
Like Duggleby, Lethbridge led from the off with Jackie Field (CC Ashwell) and Crystal Spearman (NOPINZ) the main challengers. With some 144 miles done Lethbridge had been going for 5-36-52. Field 6-11-40 and Spearman 6-19-53.
The day drew to a close with Lethbridge amassing 290.076 miles, Field 273.376 and Spearman 269.24 miles. The women’s podium was sorted.
Adam was also the first counter in the men’s team award, with the back up of Lawrence (272.115) and Steve Burrows (254.634) giving Vive Le Velo a total of 848.195 miles for victory.
The women’s team winners were again, Born to Bike – Bridgtown Cycles with Katja Rietdorf, Lynne Biddulph and Susan Semple finishing the distance in a combined distance of 749.471 miles.
Words by David Taylor