Miller passes strength test at Redgrave

HEAVY rain and cold winds at the weekend turned the already tough Redgrave cross race into a real battle in round 10 of the EADT Eastern Cross League. The course at Redgrave Activity Centre is not naturally scenic but has been developed with some purpose-built features into a varied circuit with tarmac road section and a range of artificial humps and bumps.

HEAVY rain and cold winds at the weekend turned the already tough Redgrave cross race into a real battle in round 10 of the EADT Eastern Cross League.

The course at Redgrave Activity Centre is not naturally scenic but has been developed with some purpose-built features into a varied circuit with tarmac road section and a range of artificial humps and bumps.

It then loops round the village's new community-built teen shelter and twists and turns around playing fields. In Saturday's conditions the grass sections became very heavy going - “Like riding with the brakes on” said Ipswich Bicycle Club veteran Julian Parker.

The senior and veteran's race proved to be a one-to-one trial of strength in which Nathan Miller (53-12 Multisports) beat defending league champion Shaun Aldous (Interbike RT).


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In unrelenting rain and wind, the long stretches of sodden turf were a test of power, and on the day Miller was the strongest.

Aldous, from Bungay, and Ipswich rider Miller were well clear of the rest of the field by the end of the first lap.

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In the tussle Miller, riding on the limit, made several slips, falling at the dead turn on the tarmac road and on a grass hairpin. But the time lost was insignificant compared to gains that could be made ploughing across the playing field. Aldous, who finished ahead of Miller at the regional championship last week, finished 1:22 behind this time.

Consistent Craig Beech (Interbike RT) took third place, while Clive Ling of the promoting club recovered from an early fall to emerge from a battling group to claim fourth.

Jonny Ramsey, also from the Diss & District was prominent in the group early on but faded during the last two laps, letting first-year racer Kevin Wilby from Woodbridge into fifth place. Dominic Schils (Interbike RT) was first Junior.

A new set of pedals helped to launch Tom Castle into a start-to-finish lead in the Youth race. The Ipswich Bicycle Club 15-year-old binned his reputation for slow getaways by heading the field off the line and he soon established nearly a minute's gap on Matt Cook (Mildenhall CC) with whom he had had to fight a race-long battle in September for his first EADT League win at Fakenham.

Twenty-four hours later Castle was competing again, finishing best of the Eastern riders in the National Trophy race at Peel Park, Bradford, ahead of Hugo Robinson and Luke Newby who had missed Redgrave in order to concentrate on the national event.

Third place at Redgrave went to Robert Green, an Ipswich Bicycle Club rider whose racing background was in BMX. Green closed up to Cook towards the end of the race but dropped back on the last lap. Ellen Triggs, (Colchester Rovers) was first youth girl and Jenny Hardwicke (Plomesgate CC) first Under 14 girl.

In the Under 12s Alwyn Newstead (Ipswich BC) scored his first win of the season. Behind, Henrietta Colbourne (Fat Birds CC) and Sophie Holmes (Diss& District) continued their season-long rivalry. Henrietta came though in front on the opening lap, slowed on the second, but pulled ten seconds back on the last lap to finish just five seconds behind Sophie. This result that leaves the pair tied for second place in the Under 12 EADT League, both having 348 points

Hugo Robinson (Ipswich BC) won the Under 14 category at the National Trophy Series cyclo-cross in Peel Park, Bradford, moving up to second in the U14 series standings. Robinson is now six points behind Sam Lowe (Merlin RT) with one race remaining - at Derby on January 13. Six points is the difference between first and second places in any one round, so it will be a thriller.

The course at Bradford included fast technical sections down the side of a valley, but much was very soft and gooey - bikes that were weighed down with mud were constantly being exchanged and washed in the pits.

In the Youth race, U16s and U14s together, Castle finished a determined 8th, having worked his way through from 15th at the first turn. Robinson and Newby finished 11th and 12th respectively.

The finish consisted of a climb of 15 steps followed by a sprint on tarmac. Robinson and Newby arrived at the steps together and it was running up the flight that the nimble Robinson, a footballer as well as a cyclist, made the difference, getting to the line six seconds in front. Matt Cook (Mildenhall CC) was 18th out of the 48 finishers. Castle is top local rider in the current Trophy standings at 9th; Newby is 10th, Robinson 11th and Cook 19th.

David Nichols (Glendene/Biketrax) was 11th in the Junior race to leave him ranked 5th in the table, while Vets 50+ IBC members Tim Butler, 10th in the series, and John Terrell, 20th, were 15th and 17th in their race.

After their efforts at Redgrave the previous day, Miller and Aldous did not compete, but were kept busy cleaning bikes for Jen Ives (Interbike RT) who, though suffering from a cold, finished 8th in the women's race. Jen retains her 7th spot in the series.

This Sunday the EADT League event is at Broome Heath near Bungay, the classic Waveney Valley venue that has hosted cyclo-cross races for over 40 years. Shaun Aldous will meet Nathan Miller again and will be especially keen to reverse the Redgrave result and retain the Broome Heath winner's cup which is a memorial to Aldous's friend and colleague, the late Joe Waller. Promoters are VC Baracchi and the organiser is Patrick Harbord (telephone 01502 562907).

Results from Redgrave

Seniors, Juniors, Veterans, Women

1 Nathan Miller (53-12 Multisports) 10 laps in 1:04:19; 2 Shaun Aldous (Interbike RT) +1:22; 3 Craig Beech (Interbike RT) +4:22; 4 Clive Ling 1st Vet (Diss & District CC) +4:48; 5 Kevin Wilby (Ipswich BC) +5:57; 6 Dave Copland Vet (Ipswich BC) +6:07; 7 Dominic Schils 1st Jun (Interbike RT) +6:22; 8 Gavin Rumbles Vet (Trek VW) +6:32; 9 Jonny Ramsey (Diss & District CC) +6:42; 10 Tim Bonnett (VC Baracchi) +7:28; 11 Julian Parker Vet (Ipswich BC) +7:59; 12 Jim Hardwicke Vet (Plomesgate CC) +1 lap +0:44; 13 Geoff Bores Vet (Ford CC) +1 lap +0:50; 14 Ben Paton (Angliasport) +1 lap +1:36; 15 Gary Wood Vet (Maldon & District) +1 lap +2:51; 16 Chris Guy (Interbike RT) +1 lap +2:54; 17 Stuart Chatting (Angliasport) +1 lap +3:08; 18 Clive Harrison Vet (Ford CC) +1 lap +3:15; 19 Neil Stevens (VC Norwich / Fitt Signs) +1 lap +4:04; 20 Russell Cook Vet (Ford CC) +1 lap +4:55; 21 Kevin Barker (PCA Ciclos Uno) +1 lap +6:00; 22 John Gabriel Vet (Hinckley CRC) +1 lap +6:18; 23 Thomas Walker (Ipswich BC) +1 lap +7:45; 24 David West (Angliasport) +2 laps +0:01; 25 Roger Holmes (VC Revolution) +2 laps +0:31; 26 Kieron Dunlea Vet (PCA Ciclos Uno) +2 laps +0:46; 27 Jon Colbourne Vet (Fat Birds) +2 laps +1:15; 28 David Fraser Vet (Unattached) +2 laps +1:42; 29 Martin Graves Vet (Newmarket Tri) +2 laps +1:52; 30 Colin Newstead Vet (Ipswich BC) +2 laps +2:10; 32 Rachel Moss 1st Woman (Ford CC) +2 laps +2:22.

Youth

1 Tom Castle (Ipswich BC) 4 laps in 21:23; 2 Matthew Cook (Mildenhall CC) +1:20; 3 Robert Green (Ipswich BC) +1:46; 4 William Adams (Mildenhall CC) +2:28; 5 Joshua Green 1st U14 (Glendene CC/Bike Trax) +2:44; 6 Tom Fitzpatrick (Diss & District CC) +5:01; 7 Sam Bores U14 (Lee Valley Youth CC) +5:03; 8 George Wood U14 (Maldon & District) +5:17; 9 Lewis Parker U14 (Ipswich BC) +5:40; 10 Ellen Triggs 1st Girl (Colchester Rovers) +5:46.

Under 12

1 Alwyn Newstead (Ipswich BC) 3 laps in 11:37; 2 Jack Hardwicke (Plomesgate CC) +0:01; 3 Sean Dunlea (PCA Ciclos Uno) +1:04; 4 Tristan Price 1st U10 (Chelmer CC) +2:16; 5 James Arden (Norwich ABC) +2:46; 6 Sophie Holmes 1st U8 (Diss & District CC) +4:25; 7 Henrietta Colbourne U10 (Fat Birds) +4:30; 8 Thomas Adams (Mildenhall CC) +5:47; 9 Joe Pearson U8 (Ipswich BC) +6:00.

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