Mountain bike racing is in full swing now, with both the National XC and the Southern XC Series getting underway in the last week.  At the Nationals, held at Sherwood Pines near Mansfield, there was bad luck for Vets pacesetter Paul Hopkins (Merida UK) as he had to pull out of his race with a puncture after two laps.  Andy Parsons (Offcamber) was also competing in the Vets race and did well to finish 26th, around six minutes behind winner Ian Jeremiah (Cardiff Jif) after four laps of racing.  Kim Little finished 27th, this time in the 5 lap Masters Male category, Kim was eight minutes behind first-placed Geoff Beetham (Retrobike).  Emma Bradley stepped up to the Elite class after a couple of very successful seasons at the Masters level, racing for her new team WXC.  Emma finished in 16th place at the end of the 5 lap event.
Full results here

This weekend saw the first Southern XC event, at Checkendon near Reading, with Andy Parsons going well again to finish 8th in the Vets race, ahead of Nigel Brown in 13th.  Kim Little was 9th in the Masters race with Julian Chown in 27th while Emma Bradley was 4th in the Elite race.  In th eJuniors’ race, Tom Brown was 12th ahead of Josh Day in 14th.  Results here

The WTTA Hardrider time trial championship continued with events run by Bath CC and the WTTA itself.  The 24 mile Bath CC course, running through Maiden Bradley, Mere and the Deverills, saw Rob Pears (Bath CC) continue his incredibly fast early season form, winning with a time of 57.48, which matched the course record.  Simon Rouse did really well with a time of 1.06.25 for 12th overall while Grahame Red was 32nd with 1.14.12.
At today’s 23 mile WTTA event, held at Tormarton, Simon was again well placed with 13th and achieving his target of getting round under an hour with a time of 59.38.

Vince Hounsome was the sole GDW representative at round two of the EDCA tt series, after both Don Tanner and James Chant had to withdraw due to various maladies.  Vince matched his result from round one, coming home 15th with 1.00.34 for the 24 mile Wimborne-Horton-Blandford-Wimborne course.  Adam Topham (High Wycombe CC) was the clear winner with a time of 52.47.

Yeovil CC held their first club tt of the season on Thurday evening, giving the riders the choice of one or two laps of their picturesque but tough 5.25 mile Sparkford-North Cadbury-Sparkford course.  Simon Rouse was the fastest GDW rider present, finishing third with laps of 13.30 and 13.13 for 26.43 for the 10.5 miles.  James Chant was 6th on 27.20 (13.39, 13.40), Chris Mullett 13th with 30.39 (15.11, 15.28).  Ebby Easby elected for the one lap option and was very pleased to beat three riders with her time of 18.31.  Junior riders ruled the roost on the evening, Jack Plummer (Somerset RC, 25.28) winning from Chippenham Wheelers’ Ashley Martin (26.24).

Omega RC held one of their regular circuit races at Thruxton last weekend.  In th e4th cat race, Josh Day put in a good ride, just missing out on a points finish with 13th in the as-expected sprint finish.  Mark Geddes, Chris Mullett and James Chant all finished comfortably in the pack.  James Gray was one of a massive field of 100 3rd cat riders, and like Josh just missed out on some points as he came home in 14th.

Jane Pritchard has been in duathlon action, competing in one of the DB Max evetns at Castle Combe.  Jane won the ladies’ Supervet prize, and was particularly pleased with the bike section of her race, which left her starting the final run as third placed lady.  Jane eventually slipped down a couple of places in the final 5k, finishing 5th placed lady competitor overall.