Gentry’s podium finish leaves him just one more point to make

Liam Gentry of Velo Club Baracchi took third place in the London Phoenix 96km road race, earning twenty-one British Cycling points to make his total 199.

This is just one point short of the 200 needed this year for promotion to a first category racing licence so Gentry will be hunting down that point.

Gentry attacked with others on the fifth lap and a successful break of ten riders stayed away.  Nick Esser of VCB finished in the bunch but outside the points.

Gary Matthews was the fastest VCB rider in Monday’s open time trial on the A11, when he achieved 24:55 on a windy morning when most riders were well adrift of their best times.

Chris Womack also had a good ride in difficult conditions, recording 25:38 and the other VCB times were John Swanbury 26:36, Nicki Hawkes 27:31 (including a 30-second late start penalty), Mike Rainton 28:29 and John Thompson 29:02.  Gentry, riding a tandem with Ian Dawson of Iceni Velo, did not finish and neither did Mark Newnham.

Nino Piccoli of Team Pedal won in 20:50 from Jim Burgess of Anglia Velo (22:12) and Gavin Moore of Stowmarket & District CC (22:15).

Womack rode the Anglia Velo 10 on Saturday and had a somewhat faster ride with 25:03.  He said, “Before the race started it poured with rain, thankfully stopping before the first riders set off, as I was towards the end of the field the roads had time to mainly dry out, so I didn’t fall off this time!”  Piccoli won in 20:10

In the Tuesday evening Godric CC club time trial last week conditions were good.  Swanbury and Ali Banks had their fastest tandem ride together so far with 22:57.  Womack achieved a pleasing 24:50 on this A143 course.  Other VCB times were Hawkes 26:10, Rainton 26:38 and Mike King 27:34.

Paul Lewis of Gt Yarmouth CC was credited with the win in 23:50.  Two other potentially-faster riders had left their rear lights behind and could not take part.

Also proving that “you have to be in it to win it” was Paul Bedford, who was the only VCB rider who thought fit to turn up to the Gt Yarmouth CC club time trial on a wet night a couple of weeks ago.  He went round in 28 minutes and some seconds and therefore won the scheduled VCB Athletes’ Cup, which was for the quickest VCB ride that night without modern aero aids.  The only other rider was a “Yarco” in 27 minutes and a bit.

Last week’s GYCC club time trial was reduced to 9.4 miles and Gentry was the clear winner with 21:32 from Barnby-based Stuart Pryce of Nottingham Clarion CC in 21:43 and Esser of VCB with 23:01. Other VCB times were Jenny Anderson 26:40, Mark Womack 26:42, Richard Allen 26:52, Anthony Potts 29:48 and John Haigh 30:30.

Thompson also rode the Mildenhall CC 210km Audax, which he completed in his “customary” time of around eleven hours.  The hardest part was heading back to Mildenhall from Halesworth, shunning the tailwind that would have taken him home to Lowestoft.

In the CC Breckland 12-hour time trial on August 14, Mike Rainton chalked up 203.46 miles.  The winner was Jeff Jones of Chippenham & District Wheelers, with 305.51 miles.  The most poignant performance turned out to be that of a well-known and friendly character in the sport, Ray Legg of West Suffolk Wheelers, who rode 189.34 miles in this event.  Though it is very sad to report, he passed away just over a week later in Addenbrooke’s Hospital following a stroke.

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