Event 3- The Battle of Banbridge raged on this week in the BICRL. This week it was back to Road Racing with a club version of the Annaclone RR with handicaps and gapped releases to offset ability. This was yet another fantastic event, with all clubs well represented and admin and support second to none. Our thanks to Banbridge for once again leading in the race administration and to CCC and TVR sharing with us in some of the workload on marshalling. With an Arts Crit running in the background and for many focus very much on this weekend’s Newry 3 Day, numbers showed no let up from our first event. A spectacular 72 riders took part representing the 4 main league clubs, with severa individual and unnattached riders filling out an almost capacity field.
Going off in 6 groups, numbers were reasonably weighted within each group. 20 minutes was the spread between the first and last released groups.
Weather largely held out for the evening, with only a fine spray of rain on lap 4 of 4. The wind on the other hand, was testing with a push along the first 4 or 5 miles and as the race turned northerly a headwind back towards the finish. With dry roads, however few will complain.
There was a refreshing enthusiasm right across the clubs (again) tonight, with the buzz rubbing off and without doubt motivational for organisers and support staff. 4 lead Cars were out tonight to keep riders safe and warn oncoming road users of riders under race conditions. (Our thanks to Powerhouse and BCC for the use of their team vehicles, which is a huge help in reducing the series running costs).
Of the 72 participants, leading the way were BCC with 26 riders followed by TVR with 19, (amazing well done to both), with CCC and ourselves both with 11.
Hard racing as ever in club events, there were those out feeling like prey and those out not unlike two wheeled hunters (artistic license). With each group riding through it was the efficiency and strength of the more accomplished riders of the later groups that shown bright. A number of catches took place of the first 3 laps before a sizable group took shape in the final lap heading to the line with around 35 riders. Out on his own however was was race winner Mick Martin of BCC who led from start to finish. Little was known of Mick before the start, it certainly is now however and with a creditable performance, he’s now firmly back 2 groups for the next race.
Mick crossed the line at 1hr 30mins and 5 secs, a mere 25secs in front of the chasers who took back almost 5 mins in lap 4. Pete Batey of VCI took secone with a superb sprint from the bunch. Full placing can be seen on the Banbridge Inter Club Race League Facebook page.
Another great effort by our club riders, whom are currently having to work extremely hard to stay above water. Great to see Scott back in the fold and a warm thanks to Kyle for coming in as a guest replacement. League points to follow in accordance with finishing positions
With marshaling and safety superb and the admin team well on top our Thank to you all for making this a great series and a huge success. , you all deserve a pat on the back. Well done