Image courtesy of Susanna Stables.
“With the weather looking better than promised, a full field of riders turned out for today’s event. From the beginning attacks were frequent, with at least 20 riders trying to get away at some point. With the climb tough and the decent technical, the only flats were met with a strong headwind, making it very hard for any attacks to stay away. However, despite this the pace remained high, especially over the top of the 11km uphill drag.
Taking advantage of a lull in the pace, Southampton University’s Andrew Lockwood jumped at the base of the main climb, quickly opening a sizeable gap whilst the chasing group were reluctant to attempt to close the gap. Towards the end of the penultimate lap, Lockwood came back in sight of the peloton, who had now closed the gap to roughly 300 metres.
With Lockwood in sight, James Hywel-Davies of Gillingham and District Wheelers made a last bid for the win with 11 miles to go. Hywel-Davies caught the university man half way up the climb, where they continued to work together. However, the pair got split up just 2 miles from the line shortly turning into a strong wind, which was gusting up to 35 mph. The peloton were now rapidly closing on the 2 escapees, but it was too little too late as the pair were now battling up the punishingly steep final climb. Hywel-Davies swung into the final bend to take the win by roughly 50 metres over Andrew Lockwood, who was closely followed by a hotly contested sprint finish.”
MEN. 53 miles
1. James Hywel Davies (GILLINGHAM & DIST WH)( SPRY MEMORIAL TROPHY WINNER)
2. Andrew Lockwood (SOTON UNI CC)
3. Tim Prowse (MID DEVON CC)
4. Josh Croxton (EXETER WH)
5. Joe Saunders (PLANET X- NORTHSIDE CYCLING)
6. Gareth Bushell (MID DEVON CC)
7. Daniel Wellings (SOMERSET RC -THE BYCYCLE CHAIN)
8. Phil Borrett (CHARTERBANK POTBURYS RT)
9. James Cartlidge (PLYMOUTH CORINTHIAN CC)
10. Giles Greening(TRI UK)