Antony Birt and Laura Brown were fastest male and female riders respectively, as West Suffolk Wheelers beat the snow to stage a 21-mile time trial in Suffolk on Saturday.
Birt, 43 and from Ipswich, covered the BS31 course near Risby in 53.10 to win by 20 seconds from Steve Cave (Plomesgate CC). Third was Team KTM UK’s Kieran Brady, who was another 12 seconds off the pace.
Although Birt’s winning time was some nine minutes off the course record set last year by Matthew Smith, it was a good time given the freezing temperatures which greeted the riders.
More than half the field had decided not to ride with heavy snow forecast for much of the UK. Although the area received a light dusting, the course itself was mainly clear and dry, giving the 17 finishers a welcome chance of a ride.
From a start to the north of Risby, the riders headed round a circuit which took them through Flempton, Lackford and near Cavenham.
Fastest female was the promoting club’s Laura Brown, the 32-year-old from Bury St Edmunds who clocked 1-13-17. Having marshalled at the 2017 event, Brown rode some club events last season. However, this was her first ride in an open time trial.
The team prize went to the West Suffolk Wheelers with fifth-placed Paul Rooke teaming up with Darren Sharman who was tenth as well as Pip Moore.
The veterans on standard category was won by Steve Cave (Plomesgate CC) with a plus of 2-44, beating overall winner Birt by just ten seconds, while third on standard was Jim Hardwick (Plomesgate CC) with +2.15.
There was also a medium gear event too, which was won by West Suffolk Wheelers’ Boyd Nicholas in 1:03.52
Birt was part of the winning duo at the Victoria CC two-up 10.2-mile events last June and July alongside Ipswich BC’s Andy Kennedy, and he was also second in the Victoria CC two-up 10.2 on the same course in August last year with Steve De Boltz (Ipswich) partnering him on that occasion.
* All reports are copyright of Cycling Time Trials/Snowdon Sports. Not to be used without permission.
1. Antony Birt (Team Bittrill-Vanguard) 53.10
2. Steve Cave (Plomesgate CC) 53.30
3. Kieran Brady (Team KTM UK) 53.42
4. Jim Hardwick (Plomesgate CC) 54.38
5. Paul Rooke (West Suffolk Wh) 56.23
6. Ross Edgar (Lee Valley CC) 56.51
7. Paul Jay (Team Velovelocity) 56.52
8. James Rush (CC Sudbury) 58.18
9. Julian Bosley (Stowmarket & Dist CC) 58.29
10. Darren Sharman (West Suffolk Wheelers) 58.37
Team: West Suffolk Wheelers (Paul Rooke, Darren Sharman, Pip Moore 58-50) 2:53.50
Women: Laura Brown (West Suffolk Wheelers) 1:13.17
Veterans on std:
1. Steve Cave +2.44
2. Antony Birt +2.34
3. Jim Hardwick +2.15
Medium Gear: Boyd Nicholas (West Suffolk Wh) 1:03.52