Mark Westrup and Liam Gentry of Velo Club Baracchi rode strongly in the VC Norwich 56-muile road race on a five-lap circuit based around Wicklewood on Sunday.
They finished near the front of the bunch sprint in the 60-rider race and secured fifth and sixth places respectively.
On the last lap the bunch, driven by Westrup, Gentry and others was chasing down an escape of two riders that formed when Chris Guy of Iceni Velo broke away with Mark Howard (PCH UK Racing Team). Howard was caught but Guy held his lead and won by five seconds.
With the 300 yards to go to the finish the race for the line was interrupted by a car which had parked on the circuit. As riders swerved to avoid the vehicle four of them crashed, but thankfully were not hurt. Despite this unwelcome distraction Westrup and Gentry kept their cool and finished just behind Matt Thurston (Iceni Velo) and Hugo Robinson (XRT-Elmy Cycles) in a close finish.
Nick Esser rode in support of the other two but was caught behind the crash and was unplaced.
Duncan Lines was the quickest VCB rider in Godric CC’s 10-mile club time trial, with 24:56, seventh in the 24-rider event. Other club times were John Swanbury 25:26, Chris Womack 25:27, John Thompson 27:16, Mark Womack 27:45 and Mike Wood 28:48.
At the top of the list was Stuart Pryce (Nottingham Clarion) in 21.29 and Tim Guy (Iceni Velo) 23.00.
Esser and Westrup warmed up for the VC Norwich race with a ride in the penultimate Trinity park circuit racing at Ipswich. Both lost contact with the leaders after the riding in a group of eleven during the second half of the race, but with ninth place left up for grabs in the bunch sprint Esser struck out for it, to be just beaten into tenth by Dan Zagni of Ipswich BC.
Esser was the top rider in the Gt Yarmouth CC club 10 the next day, winning in 24:04 on the usual sporting course at Somerleyton on a somewhat blustery day, ahead of Trevor Hockold of the home club (24:21) and Ben Nicholson of Iceni Velo (24:31).
Veteran Chris Womack achieved 26:16, which was quite quick for the course, and his son Mark made 28:12, with John Haigh on 33:00.
John Thompson rode the “Garboldisham Grovel” 207km Audax, starting at 8am at Garboldisham and finishing at 6.30pm after visiting Wymondham, County School, Burnham Deepdale near Wells, Castle Acre and Watton
He said, “We were very lucky wind wise and generally weather wise although some of us copped two heavy showers. I also covered quite a lot of lanes I’ve not ridden before.”
- VCB congratulates member Joe Skipper on his win in the British Middle Distance Age Group Triathlon Championships (1900m Swim, 92km bike, 21km run) at Emberton in Buckinghamshire.
He started the bike leg in third place and expected to gain from his ride. He said, “I also thought that as cycling is my strength if anyone was to catch me on the bike they would really suffer on the run and as I would be fresher I would be able to put them to the sword.” He duly caught and passed the others. As it turned out, swordplay was not needed and his run was fast enough to keep the opposition at bay.