Super Nicholls wins National Trophy

CYCLO CROSSCHELMSFORD rider David Nichols took his first ever National Trophy win after an eventful junior race on the shores of Rutland Water.

Fergus Muir

Cyclo-Cross - Suffolk & North Essex Riders at National Trophy, Round Five

By Fergus Muir

CHELMSFORD rider David Nichols took his first ever National Trophy win after an eventful junior race on the shores of Rutland Water.

Feeling the cold after a delayed start, Nichols crashed on the first lap. By the time he was back on his preferred bike, Sam Harrison (Cwmcarn Paragon) had the lead. Nichols gained some ground by making a wise choice to run on a loose surfaced climb and took the lead over the top. However, having passed the pits for the last time he punctured his front tubular tyre. There was nothing for it but to keep riding. Bashing the bike along the shingle beach of the reservoir, Nichols managed to keep control, and the lead. He thus took a confidence-boosting win and looks forward to the National Championship at Bradford on the January 10.

EADT League Juniors Luke Newby (Diss & District), Matt Cook (Mildenhall CC) and Tom Castle (Glendene/Biketrax) finished ninth, 13th and 21st respectively.

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The event was based at a sailing centre on the 3000 acre lake. As well as that beach and the loose climb, the continental-style course included tarmac, grass, woodland, steps and a bridge like the one used in round three at Ipswich. The going was muddy, slippery and waterlogged and mud and leaves were quickly building up on gear mechanisms.

Helen Wyman's parents travelled from East Anglia to see their daughter, now ranked seventh in the world, score a clear win in the women's race. She was glad of both her spare bikes, swapping machines every other lap. Best placed Eastern League rider was Rachel Moss (Ford CC) who was ninth, 7.58 down.

Ford CC clubmate Geoff Bores had his best National position this season, finishing ninth in the race for veterans over 50.

The youth riders were the first to race. With the mud yet to build up, there was less need for skill and more for power, which did not favour Ipswich BC's Hugo Robinson, who is among the most youthful of the National Trophy contenders in this class. He finished eighth, 1.22 down on winner Joshua Papworth (Wyre Forest), runner-up when Robinson won the previous round at Mallory Park.

Best Eastern Senior was Nathan Miller (Lotto/Interbike) 6.08 down on winner Paul Oldham - but 4.14 up on Ben Roach, who won the recent EADT League race at Fakenham. This was the last event on the card and the mud was really building up. Miller was glad to come into the pits three times for a freshly washed bike.

Things should be different at this Sunday's (December 21) EADT League cyclo-cross which is on the usually well-drained surfaces of Broome Heath near Bungay, first race 11am.

The details of the East District Cycling Association's time trial prize presentation have been announced. The date is Sunday, January 18. The venue is Carbrooke Village Hall, near Watton.

There will be a 50km Reliability Trial at 10am, the actual presentations at 1pm.

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