Cyclocross isnt new in Lincsquad. If you look through the archives there have been occasional forays plus the Youth Academy have put on several Youth CX races and sessions over the years. Recently Mark Clements Pam Challen and Pete Gossop have been racing in the Lincolnshire Cyclocross League and this year several others have thrown their hat into the ring.The 9th round of the Lincs CX Series was at Winterton Showground and given the spread of events in the region fairly local. The course is predominately flat and and on grass so considered more of a “roadie power” course than the more technical course that suit off roaders.
Lincsquad Youths were represented by Jess Stewart and Joel Ogle with a strong race from each.
Lincsquad TT Supreme Mistress Pan Challen has raced for a local CX Club benefitting from their advice and support and we will be looking offer similar sessions under Lincsquad. Heres her words from todays race.
“6 ladies (vets, seniors and juniors) lined up to be gridded under a somber wet sky at Winterton Showgrounds. Protocol sends the senior men off 2 minutes before the ladies’ race. Within these 2 mins the ladies were gridded into 3 rows.
A cyclocross race start is always like taking a hammer to the head and this was no exception as we sprinted from zero to top speed in an effort to get to the first corner. This thinned the line out….the following steady climb either strengthened our legs and improved our positions or destroyed our legs and smashed our placing. The second corner was soon under our wheels and we were deep into the intestines of the race.
Pretty coloured string marked the route and cheerfully waved us on. The colours being a stark contrast to the mud and glar that we were skidding through….
The leaders sped off like Sanne Cant….the remaining ladies knew that we we would have to hurt our bodies for as long as possible. We had to go and go until we couldn’t go any more. We battled like this for several laps….jumping over hurdles…..mounting and dismounting…..carrying our bikes and dealing with off camber turns and hills….. eventually I succumbed to the sprinter legs of the racer behind me….I crossed the line 11th overall and 7th vet…..
The race was all argy-bargy. The final placings came down to individual performances in the last lap. We all wore masks of pain as we skidded and drove our bikes hard through the mud. We all raced into our own personal purgatory dishing out pain to each other….one by one we picked each other off….and the cheering and support from the lincsquadders who had raced earlier in the day, yet hung back to support made me feel like I was in a velodrome…..the noise was amazing and definitely helped in maintaining my “don’t give up……don’t ever give up” mantra.
The lady racers all gather after the race….we all appreciate how much effort we have put in and congratulate each other. I can say for sure that that race is one of my favourites”
As we had over 7 Lincsquadders racing I thought it’d be best to get a short post race comment from each – especially as one of those was Mark Gollings……
“The race lasted 45x mins but my report wud go on and on and on. So I’ll leave this one to you guys . Did enjoy it though. Thanks to Gary for motivating us to turn up.”
“It was great to see lincsquad out in force again..cant believe Dave beat you Peter but then again he would of been worried that I might be catching him up which would of given him extra speed ..can’t believe Golly only beat me by seconds “
Ahhh yes… for the first time this season I managed to edge ahead of Pete Gossop – took a small heart attack to achieve it and still leaves the score at 4-1 in his favour.
Pete took my fluke well
“Great to see a great lincsquad turnout today made a brilliant race well done everyone enjoy the pass Dave it won’t be that easy next time”
Great turn out, good to pin a number on again, I wasn’t last and even had time for a quick lie down half way round, where’s the next one?
“A great afternoon, they’re all mad the way they fly around the muddy slippery course. I was pleased that the leader, on his last lap, came past just after the get off the bike jump things. But I thoroughly enjoyed it and what a workout…..”
Mark Clements is one of the clubs most experienced off road riders and uses those skills to coach for the club on a Saturday morning. Watching him during practice tackle the plank section showed all of us the benefits of getting some technique sessions. Keep an eye out for Off road skills Sessions soon.
So to round this off we should mention Sheehan Quirke. Fresh from the money making of the Woodall round he was suitably bouyant and again put in a good solid ride. Always a good racer and races best when there is someone to chase…and there always is on these events.
Ask any of the above guys and girls and they’ll tell you just how much fun this was.
Hard but fun.
See you at the next one.