Nova Raiders Sporting 10.
Both the Overall and Women’s Course Records were beaten as the first medals in the Friction Hydraulics Series were settled in Round 15, the Nova Raiders Sporting 10. Held on the rolling Cherrington – Newport course, RAF rider Ryan Morley lopped three seconds off Matt Garthwaite’s old benchmark set in June to lower the Overall record to 21 minutes 30 seconds. Morley was in no doubt about the testing nature of the course, which includes the 10% climb of Cheney Bank, and had clearly suffered in attaining that record. He stated: “It’s a tough old course that. I went off hard, pushing on the climbs. I attacked the big climb off the turn and probably went a little too deep. The last few miles I was really suffering. I had no idea what the course record was, so it was a nice surprise when I got back to the HQ. It’s always great to own a course record, especially when taking it of a class rider like Matt“.
Taking County honours was Wrekinsport CC’s Chris Halford, stopping the watch on 22:18. However that victory was a close call as he beat 2018 Friction Veteran’s Champion and Overall Series leader Bryn Davies by three seconds – although Davies had a tale about that. Halford is known for grinding a huge 60-tooth gear and found the constant up and down causing him issues: “I went well, it’s always hard to get a rhythm on this course but strangely enjoyable. Congratulations to Ryan, and the Nova Raiders for ordering the dry weather“! Halford moved into the Overall Top 10 on the strength of his ride and also took victory in the Veteran’s event with a fine +4:09, again beating Davies into runner-up spot but this time by seven seconds when the age-related standards were applied.
Davies meanwhile was left rueing ‘What if’ as he succumbed to an unfortunate traffic hold up near the finish with a vital five points dropped meaning he could not gain Overall Gold, with a strong challenge from Matt Gibbons who took 4th spot on the day in 23:51 to keep the Championship race alive to the wire. However Davies did take the first Championship of the Series as he sealed the Veteran’s title as consolation. Davies explained: “I really enjoyed the race and felt good. I was going well, but unfortunately got held up just before the finish by a tractor turning off which probably cost the County win. However I wouldn’t have got close to Ryan who put in a storming ride. Big thanks to the Nova Raiders for a great event, and as always great support along the route“.
Although Overall Gold and Silver were still in play for the final round Bronze was settled as Hafren CC’s Ian Nisbett was rewarded for a fabulous season. Nisbett wasn’t finished there either as he took Veteran’s Silver to make it a Hafren brace at the top of this Championship. Nisbett has put in some storming efforts this year, all the more apparent due to being unable to complete the maximum 12 counting rides. He stated: “I am very pleased to achieve both results over the season – especially as I wasn’t able to complete the full points count of 12 races. It’s been hard work, but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the close racing and good natured competition“.
Gibbons meanwhile was surprised by the continuing great form of Nova Raiders’ team mate Andy Rose, who has really come good at the tail end of the season. Rose edged Gibbons out by 5 seconds with an excellent personal best of 23:46, coming back strong after recharging his batteries. He commented: “I really enjoyed the race after several weeks break. I was pleased to have broken me course PB by nearly a minute. A very challenging course. As ever thanks to all the volunteers“.
If Morley just lowered the Overall benchmark Jessica Rhodes-Jones smashed her own Women’s record to smithereens, lopping a huge 31 seconds off her 2017 record-breaking effort. Rhodes-Jones hadn’t been quite sure what to expect on first sight of the course a year ago but made no mistake in 2018 with a fabulous effort of 23:59. She commented: “I was very happy to break the record again this year – the near-end of season Nova Raiders 10 has become a good benchmark for performance improvement each year! I was particularly happy with my descent to the turn this year – I knew from last year that you can just go for it – tucking in and keeping pedalling meant I was as quick as Ryan Morley on that section according to Strava! Thank you to the pusher off, timekeepers and all the marshals out on course, it was great to get a cheer at the turnaround“.
Taking the win amongst the County women was Deb Hutson-Lumb, who had double reason to race despite being under the weather. Hutson-Lumb stopped the watch on 26:08, which when converted to Veteran Standard saw her bear Rose by two seconds with a fine +3:01. This consolidated her third spot in both the Women’s and Veteran’s Championships despite a late start – which was clearly part of the plan. She commented: “The Nova 10 has got to be the hardest race I’ve done this season! I was keen to hang on to third place in both the Women’s and Veteran’s Series so it had to be done despite the start of a cold. A fantastic ride by Jessica to take her own Women’s course record. Well done to everyone who took part, and a big thank you all those who gave their time to help run the event“.
Hutson-Lumb wasn’t the only women with her eye on the medals as Jenny York got her first taste of the course – and took Women’s Gold with her 27:25 ride. York knew that the course would be a test, but after initially dreading the prospect of what was to come she totally changed her perspective: “My first time on this course so I was a little worried but I loved it! I was pleased to seal the Gold points medal too so a good day for me! Thanks to the Nova guys and all that helped out run the event“.
In the Friction Junior Series Revolutions Racing’s Henri Bedford kept the Junior title race alive and kicking with a great effort of 25:30 in spite of a strong challenge from Evolve’s George Coombes who finished 19 seconds back. Bedford gave his all and is clearly relishing being back in form after coming back from a holiday illness, recording a big personal best in spite of a familiar problem in the process. He stated: “I managed to improve my PB for the course by 27 seconds from earlier this year. I got held up by the same tractor as Bryn! A challenging course made enjoyable by the weather. Great organisation by Nova Raiders, many thanks to all the volunteers“.
Friction and Hydraulic Services Shropshire Championship Points Series – Round 15
|6||Philip||Gardner||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||V||24:53||35|
|11||Jenny||York||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||WV||27:25||10|
|12||Ian||Carson||Oswestry Paragon CC||V||29:18||5|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Veterans Championship – Round 15
|Vets Pos’n||Forename||Surname||Club||Cat||+/- Vet Std||Vets Points|
|6||Jenny||York||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||WV||+2:26||35|
|7||Philip||Gardner||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||V||+1:57||30|
|8||Ian||Carson||Oswestry Paragon CC||V||-0:46||25|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Women’s Championship – Round 15
|Women’s Pos’n||Forename||Surname||Club||Cat||Time||Women’s Points|
|2||Jenny||York||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||WV||27:25||55|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Junior Championship – Round 15
|Junior Pos’n||Forename||Surname||Club||Cat||Time||Junior Points|
Top Club Award – Round 15
|4||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||45|
|8||Oswestry Paragon CC||5|
Cumulative Standings after fifteen rounds
Friction and Hydraulic Services Shropshire Championship Points Series
|1||Bryn Davies||Hafren CC||V||595|
|2||Matt Gibbons||Nova Raiders||S||570|
|3||Ian Nisbett||Hafren CC||V||445|
|4||Ed Middleton||Nova Raiders||S||380|
|5||Alex Leek||SCCA Private Member||S||300|
|6||Victor Chetta||SCCA Private Member||V||295|
|7||Dan Watts||SCCA Private Member||S||290|
|8||Richard Kay||North Shropshire Wheelers||V||200|
|9||Kirk Vickers||SCCA Private Member||S||195|
|10||Chris Halford||Wrekinsport CC||V||185|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Veterans Championship
|1||Bryn Davies||Hafren CC||650|
|2||Ian Nisbett||Hafren CC||495|
|3||Deb Hutson-Lumb||Nova Raiders||400|
|4||Jenny York||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||375|
|5||William Baugh||Ludlow CC||285|
|6||Victor Chetta||SCCA Private Member||280|
|7||Dave Wilson||North Shropshire Wheelers||275|
|8||Andy Rose||Nova Raiders||255|
|9||Chris Halford||Wrekinsport CC||210|
|10||David Drew||North Shropshire Wheelers||205|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Women’s Championship
|Women’s Pos’n||Name||Club||Best 12|
|1||Jenny York||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||640|
|2||Helen Tudor||Oswestry Paragon CC||500|
|3||Deb Hutson-Lumb||Nova Raiders||440|
|4||Jenny Newton||Nova Raiders||375|
|5||Charlotte Chapman||Nova Raiders||350|
|6||Juliet Suddaby||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||215|
|7||Emma Serjeant||Hafren CC||165|
|8||Sarah Mawhinney||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||125|
|=9||Hetty Niblett||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||120|
|=9||Rebecca Richardson||Hafren CC||120|
Friction and Hydraulic Services Junior Championship
|Junior Pos’n||Name||Club||Best 12|
|1||Kieran Morris||Oswestry Paragon CC||300|
|2||Henri Bedford||Revolutions Racing||260|
|3||Sam Holwill||Hafren CC||165|
|4||Jack Young||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||130|
|5||William Hints||Ludlow Brewery RT||115|
|7||Ronnie Tse||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||55|
|=8||Ben Pierce||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||45|
|=8||Charlie Price||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||45|
|10||Daniel Morris||Wrekinsport CC||40|
Top Club Award
|3||North Shropshire Wheelers||535|
|4||Mid Shropshire Wheelers||550|
|6||Oswestry Paragon CC||385|
|7||Ludlow Brewery RT||335|
|12||Newport Shropshire CC||30|