Jarvis wins Eastern Region Cyclo-Cross Championship

Kieran Jarvis climbs to the Eastern Championships at Welwyn. Picture: FERGUS MUIR

Kieran Jarvis climbs to the Eastern Championships at Welwyn. Picture: FERGUS MUIR - Credit: Archant

A disconsolate Kieran Jarvis won the Eastern Senior Cyclo-Cross Championship at Stanborough Park, Welwyn on Sunday, writes Fergus Muir.

Richard Jones, Central Region Champion, swirls his back wheel round a tight muddy corner at Welwyn.

Richard Jones, Central Region Champion, swirls his back wheel round a tight muddy corner at Welwyn. Picture: FERGUS MUIR - Credit: Archant

Disconsolate because although the Diss rider’s stamina and determination had enabled him to pick off rivals one-by-one on what was becoming a muddy slog of a course, Richard Jones was still ahead of him.

But it turned out that though Jones races for the Suffolk-based Renvale RT, his home is in British Cycling’s Central Division and Jones had won the Central Championship, while Jarvis (Team OnForm) was King of the East at this joint promotion by the two regions.

In a topsy-turvy race, the early leader was Seb Herrod (ROTOR RT), who usually takes a lap or two to get firing on all cylinders.

Herrod was overhauled by Jones and Cam Hurst of XRT/Elmy. Eventually Jones forged ahead with no-one able to hold his wheel while Herrod found his saddle slipping and had to change bikes.

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By now everyone was running the uphill switch-back that had been ridable earlier in the day. Over the last two laps Jarvis was gaining on Jones but not quickly enough to catch the Midlander. Cam Hurst took the Eastern silver medal and Seb Herrod the bronze.

Earlier in the day conditions were much brighter and the subtleties and virtues of the course more apparent. Particularly clever were the small pair of logs about 200 metres before the finish line, which about a quarter of the competitors could clear astride their bikes.

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It was here that a well-judged effort by Charlie Johnson (Stowmarket & District) got him away from the small group that was chasing lone leader Joe Keily (Welwyn Whs) to take the Under 16 Boys silver medal.

There was a fourth place for Alex Dale ahead of Iceni’s Joseph Smith and Callum Laborde.

After one lap of the Women’s championship Gemma Melton (Pedal Power Ipswich) led Elspeth Grace (Welwyn Whs). Watchers wondered if the distractions of a first term at Cambridge University might have affected Grace’s training.

In fact she revealed there has been time for one training ride a week, plus lots of running. It was enough for an eventually convincing win from Melton with Imogen Chastell third and top Junior.

Florence Barnett (King’s Lynn CC) came home first Under 14 Girl in a large field of Youth riders. Older sister Bethany battled all race with Ellen Bennett of Welwyn Wheelers, eventually missing out of the Eastern U16 Girls Championship by just two seconds.

Central Region men dominated the Vets 50-Plus, where the Eastern Championship went to John Jones of the Verulam CC after Jimmy Piper (Renvale RT) had an “Off” close to the end. Piper took Eastern silver with Richard Muchmore on bronze.

West Suffolk Wheeler Peter Golding put in an exceptional ride to take the Over 60s silver medal. Racing early in the day – in sunshine – Golding was second to Andrew Roberts (GS Vecchi)

Molly Cutmore of the Hadleigh-based TPH team was bronze medallist in the Eastern Junior Women’s Championship.

Oliver Stockwell (Welwyn Wheelers) won the Junior Men’s race which was dominated by Home Counties riders. Top Suffolk finisher was Jack Parrish who was fifth, just four seconds in front of Angus Toms (Iceni Velo) with Fred Gill (CT OnForm) next.

- This weekend National Trophy cyclo-cross is coming to Trinity Park, Ipswich – the Suffolk Showground.

For weeks Steve Grimwood of Elmy Cycles and his team of helpers have been preparing the course and the marquees are now erected. It is a more compact course than last year which should make it more spectator–friendly.

Racing starts on Saturday with the events for the Over 40s, beginning with the Women at 12 Noon.

On Sunday the Juniors are first off at 10.15am and racing continues until the one-hour race for Senior Men, starting at 2.30pm, concludes the weekend.

It is free for spectators and should be well worth a look – postcode IP3 8UH.

RESULTS - Eastern Region Champions (selected) :

WOMEN: 1 Elspeth Grace (Welwyn Whs), 2 Gemma Melton (Pedal Power Ipswich), 3 Connie Hayes (LIV AWOL).

SENIOR MEN: 1 Kieran Jarvis (Team OnForm), 2 Cam Hurst (XRT/Elmy), 3 Seb Herrod (ROTOR RT),

JUNIORS - MEN: 1 Oliver Stockwell (Welwyn Whs), 2 Joseph Bennett (Welwyn Whs), 3 Max Bolton (Lee Valley Youth); WOMEN: 1 Imogen Chastell (LIV AWOL), 2 Ellie-May Pledger (LVYCC), 3 Mollie Cutmore (TPH Racing).

VET MEN 40-49: 1 Matt Webber (Forest Side Riders), 2 Ben Lewis (FSR), 3 Neil Ellison WDMBC).

VET MEN 50-59: 1 John Jones (Verulam CC), 2 Jimmy Piper (Renvale RT), 3 Richard Muchmore (Renvale).

VET MEN 60 + : 1 Andrew Roberts (GSVecchi), 2 Peter Golding (West Suffolk Whs), 3 Geoff Bores (Ford CC).

UNDER 16 - BOYS 1 Joe Keily (Welwyn Whs), 2 Charlie Johnson (Stow & Dist) , 3 Euan Woodliffe (Welwyn Whs). GIRLS: 1 Ellen Bennett (Welwyn Whs) 2 Bethany Barnett (LIV AWOL) 3 Iona Moir (Welwyn Whs).

UNDER 14 – GIRLS: 1 Florence Barnett (King’s Lynn CC), 2 Abigail Miller (WXC), 3 Millie Coleman (Welwyn Whs). BOYS: Mark Lightfoot (Welwyn Whs), 2 Robin Steer (CC Hackney), 3 Dylan Starkey (Welwyn Whs).

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