Bogart Hole Clough looked like something out of ‘Fellowship of the Ring’ at 8am on Sunday morning when we arrived to set up the course, with misty wraiths swirling out of the chilly cloughs. However the peace didn’t last long as nearly 250 racers descended during the morning including no less than 67 under 12’s/10’s!!
Racing got going with the Youth Race at 11.30, once the early morning mist had given way to sunshine, with the 32 youths racing three laps of the course in 30 minutes with a convincing win by Tom Craig (Team Scott) followed by Tom Figgins (Bolton Hot Wheels) and Tim Jones (CSP). First girl was Kim Baptista (Eastlands) racing to 15th overall, a great performance for an under 14 girl. First Under 14 boy was Nathan Hawthron (Eastlands). Well done to everyone who got round a really tough course, made sapping by the summer and Autumn rain and by the terrain which holds water like a sponge.
Next up was a competitive 15 minute race for the under 12’s over a short course being devoured in under three minutes per lap by the winner, Isaac Peatfield, followed by Tyler Koch (both Bolton Hotwheels) and Joe Brookes. First under 12 girl was Nicole Clark (Port Sunlight Wheelers) coming in at a creditable 5th overall.
Once a marauding stray dog had been cleared from the ‘top field’, a massive gang of 38 under 10’s got away on circuits of the field which was quite heavy going in places, some tots practising cross skills of running/walking with the bike as it got a bit too sticky for them to ride. Nonetheless, the racing at the head of the field was always fast and the Peatfield Bolton boys rode well again with younger brother Ben taking the win from Matthew Baptista and Aiden Lawrence, with Andrew Clarke first under 8, Evelyn Black first girl and Isobel Koch first girl under 8.
Thanks to Maxgear/Champion System for providing a boxful of prizes eagerly set upon by the Under 12 and 10’s winners! And thanks to PA man Ian Bury for preventing the race organizer from being mobbed by the kids after their Mars Bars!
The seniors, all 142 of them lined up on the top field for two laps around the field before hitting the main course and looked pretty spectacular in the sunshine with spray and mud coming off the wheels. Not a bad turn-out for a National Trophy Day and with some other NW regulars up at the Mills Hills CX sportive!
The lap times were stretched out to around 12 minutes making a total race time of just over an hour for the winner but a painful 1’10-15’ for some. The course cut up to suit the specialists in the mud and those reading the terrain well to run some parts and keep their bikes clear(er) of mud. Some enthusiastic work in the pits kept the top guys clear of trouble with a Team Elite one-two, Giles taking his first win of the season and Paul Bethell staying ahead of Alex McNichol (Velo Club Moulin) on a great ride suiting the conditions. John Dogdin (Bike Treks) and Pete Wilbraham (Team Elite) completed the Top 5 with first from promoting club, Manchester Wheelers, Scott Wilson, with another strong ride at 11th.
Paul was also first Vet, with Keith Ashbridge (VC Cumbria) second and Adrian Lawrence (Team BGlobal) third. The V45’s lined up with the Zepnat pair Pete Middleton and Sean Beswick first and second with Konrad Manning (Rapha Condor Sharp) third. The V50’s were led home by Duncan Stuart (KMB), Juniors by Oliver Payton (CSP), U23’s by Martin Woffindin (CSP) and ladies by Karen Payton (CSP).
We tested the transponder system in the main race for the first time under CDNW’s Ivor Armstrong’s watchful guidance and this went well and could be a way of getting results out faster in the future, complimentary to the skills of the slick judging team led by Louise Gore. Thanks also to Race Commissaire Stu Johnson, to Comms Len Woffindin and John Brailsford for being on hand to help with results and integrating the transponder system for the first time, to Wheelers Andy Bramhall, Caroline and Viv for running a very busy sign-on so professionally for the first time and to all the Wheelers and friends who set up the course, assisted, marshaled and cleared up.
Thanks for a great turn-out racers, helpers, friends and families! We love having you along for the day. As always, let me know what you like about the course/day or if you’ve got ideas to make our NW races even cooler!
I have quite a lot of unclaimed prizes from the race so I will be at Weaver Valley for you to pick these up. See you there people. Cheers! Mick Style
- Photos here from Ed Rollason Photography
- Photos here from David Greenwood
- Photos here from ‘Major T’
Biketreks’ Jon Dodgin onboard camera