Gallery: Suffolk rider Hugo Robinson wins national cycling championship
SUFFOLK’S Hugo Robinson won his second consecutive national junior cyclo-cross championship after a dominant display at Ipswich’s Chantry Park on Sunday.
SUFFOLK’S Hugo Robinson won his second consecutive national junior cyclo-cross championship after a dominant display at Ipswich’s Chantry Park yesterday.
The Debenham teenager was fifth to the first bend but rapidly took the front and opened a gap on his pursuers.
The Elmy Cycles/XRT rider was briefly caught by eventual silver medallist Alex Welburn but after a short spell on his wheel Robinson put in a stinging attack and opened a gap which was never closed.
It was a hugely impressive display from the 17-year-old, who shrugged off any nerves he may have had to delight his home crowd with an emphatic win.
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“It was fantastic to do the double and to win at my home race is just wonderful,” he said afterwards.
It set the scene perfectly for a thrilling senior men’s race.
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There were big names in contention for the elite crown, including Ian Field, pro mountain biker Liam Killeen, top road racer and eight-time cross champion Roger Hammond and defending jersey holder Paul Oldham.
After a frenetic start five men pulled clear, Field, Oldham and Killeen being joined by Jody Crawforth and David Fletcher.
Killeen, a hot prospect for this summer’s Olympic mountain-biking race, led the bunch for much of the race before attacking hard with 15 minutes left.
Only Field could stay with him and the pair were glued together for the final laps.
But with just 500m to go there was a touch of wheels in a slippery off-camber section and Killeen went down. He was up in an instant but it was too late and an overjoyed Field took victory. It was a bitter pill for Killeen, who had to be satisfied with a fourth silver.
In the women’s event top continental-based pro Helen Wyman was a class apart, leading from the start and coming across the line a country mile ahead of Nikki Harris for a seventh British title.
The U23 men’s championship was a closer-fought affair with Steve James managing to find something extra in a desperate battle with Kenta Gallagher, pulling clear with half a lap to go.
On Saturday it was the veteran men who provided the drama. As in the elites, it was a crash, this time on the final bend, which helped decide the outcome.
Mick Bell and Steve Davies had been wheel-to-wheel in the 50+ race almost since the start and their desperate battle only ended when they collided on the last turn.
Bell was quicker to recover and claim the champion’s jersey.
In the 40+ veterans Jim Bryant was in dominant form, a comfortable winner from Darren Atkins. Local riders Greg Simcock (8th) and Ipswich’s Dave Copland (20th) had very strong races.
Eastern League rider Sean Dunlea was agonisingly close to the podium with a spirited fourth place in the U16 youth race.
British National Cyclo-cross Championships, Chantry Park, Ipswich
Elite: 1 Ian Field; 2 Liam Killeen; 3 Jody Crawforth. Selected others; 36 Ross Tricker.
Women: 1 Helen Wyman; 2 Nikki Harris; 3 Annie Last
Junior: 1 Hugo Robinson; 2 Alex Welburn; 3 Joe Moses.
Junior women: 1 Hannah Payton; 2 Bethany Crumpton; 3 Rebecca Preece.
Veteran women: 1 Louise Robinson; 2 Isla Rowntree; 3 Helen MacGregor
U23 men: 1 Steve James; 2 Kenta Gallagher; 3 Grant Ferguson.
Veteran 40+: 1 Jim Bryan; 2 Darren Atkins; 3 Chris Young; 8 Greg Simcock, 20 David Copland.
Veteran 50+: 1 Mick Bell; 2 Steve Davies; 3 Mick Davies.
U16 boys: 1 Jack Ravenscroft; 2 James Shaw; 3 Billy Harding; 4 Sean Dunlea.
U16 girls: 1 Abbie-Mae Parkinson; 2 Grace Garner; 3 Jessica Wilkinson.
U14 Boys: 1 Dan Tulett; 2 David Barnes; 3 Will Gascoyne; 22 Frank Longstaff; 23 James Jackson, 28 Finlay Clayton.
U14 girls: 1 Charlotte Broughton; 2 Sophie Capewell; 3 Jessica Roberts.
More from the championships in the EADT on Saturday