The 2009 Masters National Track Championships kicked off with the 200m Sprint qualifiers, match sprints and the Cyclists With a Disability (CWAD) 200m title.
Pictures from the event can be purchased from swarbrick.com
Pictures from the event can be purchased from swarbrick.com
The women were divided this year into 30-34 and 35+ age categories. Fastest qualifier in the 35+ age group was Janet Birkmyre (XRT elmycycles.co.uk) with a time of 12.54 seconds. Alison Chisholm (Edinburgh RC) was second with 12.61 and Siobhan Mullan (AKO Ducati Corse ECT) third with 13.05.
Birkmyre beat Arja Scarsbrook (Team Echelon) in the first of the heats to progress to the Semi Finals, with Chisholm taking the second ahead of Jeanette Baxter (Yatsumitsu Schlapp) and with the third heat also going to form – Chisholm taking the win from Cheryl Owens (GS Metro), the final place in the Semis was decided with a Repechage featuring Owens, Baxter and Scarsbrook.
It was Baxter who took the fourth and final place in the penultimate round after an early attack from Ownes. Her reward was a match-up with Birkmyre, with Chisholm and Mullan in the second semi.
It was Birkmyre who secured the first medal of the competition – guaranteeing herself at least a Silver with a comfortable win over Baxter . In the second Semi-Final, Mullan took the initiative and jumped first, but Chisholm came around her in the home straight to take the second Final place.
In the final, Chisholm took the lead from the start and controlled the race, dictating the pace from the front and taking the initiative just before the bell, winning comfortably in the end despite a strong charge from Birkmyre. Mullan took the Bronze.
In the 30-34 age group it was Sarah Storey (VC St Raphael) who took top spot in the time trial with a 12.896, ahead of Caroline Gammell (XRT elmycycles.co.uk) with 13.659 and Kate Butler (Dulwich Paragon CC) at 14.350.
With only four competitors in the age category, it was straight to the Semi-Finals and Sarah Storey took the first spot in the Final with a controlled performance against Fiona Walker of Walkers CC. The second spot was less straightforward, with Butler just holding of Gammell to secure her place.
In the Final, Butler tried to control things early on, but Storey used her experience to jump her opponent and pull out an enormous lead which Butler couldn’t do anything about. In the 3rd-4th place race it was Gammell who took the final medal.
In the men’s 70+ category, Roland Crayford of San Fairy Ann CC clocked an impressive 13.484,half a second ahead of Brian Dacey (DeLaune CC) – 13.926 with Laurie Rissbrook (BC Private Member) a further half second back on 14.466.
Round one saw one two up and one three up heat with Crayford booking a Semi-Final place by despatching Derek Smith (Yatsumitsu Schlapp) and Dacey joining him, winning comfortably from Laurie Rissbrook (BC Private Member) and Michael Reay (Welland Valley CC).
Smith, Reay and Rissbrook lined up for the Repechage and it was Rissbrook who progressed, opening out a good lead on his closely matched opponents by the last lap.
With no realistic chance of challenging Crayford in the Semis, Rissbrook rode a tactical race – letting Crayford go and saving himself for a 3rd-4th ride-off against the unfortunate Reay who couldn’t get close to Dacey in the other Semi. Reay crashed twice in the heats, causing Dacey to somersault over him on this occasion, before the heat was restarted. The tactic worked, too, with Rissbrook easily securing the bronze against the bruised and battered Reay.
The final was somewhat closer. Crayford lead it out and was a couple of lengths clear at the bell, but Dacey closed on him to finish on his back wheel.
Still going well following his move to the 65-69 category, Sherwood Pines Cycles’ Geoff Cooke set a time that would have seen him on top of the 55-59 category – 12.521. Lance Ravenhill of Kenilworth Wheelers also scraped under 13 seconds with a 12.927 and Peter Smith (Teeside Clarion) was third on 13.437.
Drawn against Mike Wolstenholme of Macclesfield Wheelers in the first round, C
ooke overcame a 20m deficit at the bell to take his place in the semi-finals. Ravenhill joined him, coming round John Mason of Ayr Roads CC on the home straight to win the second heat. The third place available in the first round went to Smith – ensuring that the three fast qualifiers would all make the final – with the Teeside man winning comfortably in the end, after a good tussle with Richard Lacy of Bedfordshire RCC.
Lacy joined Wolstenholme and Mason in the Reps and clinched the last Semi-Final spot on the line from Wolstenholme. As expected, Cooke booked his place in the final – again coming from a long way back against Lacy to take the win comfortably. Smith won the other Semi by half a bike length from Ravenhill to complete the Final line-up.
Again, it was his opponent who took the initiative, but couldn’t stop Cooke from powering through to take another comfortable win. Ravenhill took the 3rd-4th ride-off to join Cooke and Smith on the podium.
Ed Demery (Bush Healthcare CRT) headed the 60-64 timesheets with a 12.667, edging out Geoff Brandt (Birkenhead North End CC) – 12.986 and Max Pendleton (Mildenhall) who clocked 13.528.
All three first round heats reflected the 200m qualifying times, with Demery pulling out a big advantage over Doug Conroy (Redmon CC), Brandt comfortably disposing of Chris Streather (VC St Raphael) and Pendleton edging out Sandy Wallace (Sandy Wallace Cycles).
Wallace went in to the Repechage with Conroy and Streather as clear favourite and didn’t disappoint, taking the last Semi-Final spot by a couple of bike lengths from Streather.
Wallace’s reward was a place in the Semi-Final against fastest qualifier Demery, but he was unable to over turn the form book with Demery taking the win by a couple of bike lengths. The other Semi-Final was much closer with Pendelton and Brandt neck and neck throughout, but it was the Merseysider who joined Demery in the final.
The Final was equally close, with nothing to choose between Demery and Brandt. Brandt cut inside Demery at the bell to take the initiative, but it was Demery who pulled ahead to take the title. Wallace took the Bronze by a wheel.
Closest finish of the evening was – without question – the 55-59 final. Andy Laing (Musselburgh Roads CC) was the fastest qualifier with a 12.549 second 200m time. Steve Davies of Ferryhill Wheelers wasn’t far behind with a 12.790 and the third quickest in the category – also sneaking under 13 seconds with a 12.808 – was Barrie Bailey of VC St Raphael.
Laing eased through the first round, taking a comfortable win from the charismatic Jim Robertson (BC Private Member) and Davis joined him in the Semis with an almost equally emphatic victory over Martin Bush (Bush Healthcare CRT). Bailey ensured yet another first round followed the pattern set in qualifying – albeit with a much narrower margin over Neville Smith (PCA Ciclos Uno).
Despite that, it was Bush that took a narrow Repechage win over Robertson and Smith – after some very close racing.
Qualifying was proving a remarkably good predictor, though, and the Semi-Finals again went to form with Laing easing out Bush in a close fought race and Davies comfortably seeing off the challenge of Bailey.
Bailey would pip Bush for the Bronze, but it was the final that proved to be one of the highlights of the day’s racing with Davies leading out a hard charging Laing with a lap to go. It was Davies, though, that took the Gold – by the width of a tub.
The 50-54 Category saw only four riders take to the track, with Mark Zaschke (City Cycle Centre) the quickest of them at 12.202, just a fraction ahead of Keith Williams (Port Talbot Wheelers) – 12.225 – and David Smith (Brereton Wheelers) not far behind with 12.592.
John Coltman (Chippenham & District Wheelers) had been a further 3 seconds behind, so it was no great suprise when Zaschke booked his place on the podium with a controlled performance. Smith took the initiative in the second Semi, but it was Williams who came through on the last lap to join Zaschke in the Final.
After his trademark face-slapping warm-up, Williams set off in pursuit of Zaschke in the final, but the man in black controlled the race perfectly and took Gold by half a bike in a frantic finish. Smith took Bronze.
Jim Varnish (Halesowen C & AC) was quickest of the 45-49 category – and one of four riders to break the 12 second barrier – with an 11.464. Even with three younger age categories left, it was clearly a very quick time and, indeed, would end up being the 4th fastest time of all.
Martin Stephens (VC Rutland) was next up with 11.639 and right behind him – with an 11.644 – was Ivor Reid of Clachnacuddin CC. Eddy Sobieralski (sports-coaching.com) was the fourth man under 12 seconds, stopping the clock at 11.880.
With 10 riders in this category – equal biggest with the 40-44s – the competition was run as 4 heats (two 2-up and two 3-up) with two repechages, 3 Semi-Finals and a 3-up final.
Varnish, Stephens and Reid and Simon Schmidt (VC Londres) – made it through to the Semi-Finals, with Iain Young (Scunthorpe Poly CC), Sobieralski and Mike Brampton (TM Racing) making up the first Repechage and Brian Fudge (i-team CC) and John Horton (BC Private Member) the other.
Young and Fudge made it through to the Semi-Finals to join the members of the 11 second club, with Young drawn against Varnish, Fud
ge against Stephens and Schmidt against Reid.
Young gave Varnish a run for his money, but the big Halesowen rider held him off to claim a medal – colour to be determined. Stephens overhauled Fudge to join him in the final and Reid comfortably took the third spot from Schmidt.
The final saw Reid jump first and build a commanding lead, but he was reeled in by Stephens and Varnish, with the Halesowen man – now usually known as Jess’ Dad – adding another National title to his collection.
There were 10 riders in the 40-44 category, too, but only one of them – Varnish’s Halesowen team mate Andrew Tranter – would go under 11 seconds. His time of 11.529 was half a second better than his nearest rival – John Saysell of PCA Ciclos Uno who just missed out on joining the 11 Second Club with a 12.005. Paul Askey (Lichfield City CC) was third fastest with 12.087.
Tranter beat Scherrit Knoeson (Twickenham CC) to reach the Semi-Finals, with Saysell finishing ahead of Paul Gittins (Ferryhill Wheelers) to join him. In a rare example of qualifying not reflecting match sprint performances, Askey could do no better than 3rd in his heat behind Tony Brooks (Brooks Cycles) and Rob Drinkwater (Twickenham CC). In the last of the heats, yet another Twickenham rider (and regular trackcycling contributor) David Jack qualified for the Semis, leaving Elliot Davis (GB Fire Service CT) and Dave Dentus (Team Quest) to battle it out in the Reps.
Dentus took the next available slot having faced the Twickenham duo of Drinkwater and Knoesen to get there – getting the jump on reigning Masters Time Trial Champion Drinkwater and controlling the race from the front. Davis took the last remaining spot from Askey and Gittins.
Dentus tried a similar tactic in the Semis but couldn’t repeat the performance, Tranter securing his place in the Final. Saysell joined him thanks to a narrow victory over Davis and the third place went to Jack who used his power to time trial away from Brooks and guarantee at least a Bronze medal.
And Bronze it was to be. Although he got to the front, as he had done in the first round and the Semis, this time Jack was unable to hold his rivals off. Saysell and Tranter powered past him with a lap to go with Tranter easing past Saysell on the last lap to clinch the title.
As the 35-39 category commenced qualifying, Jim Varnish’s 45-49 200m time still topped the overall leaderboard. Two more riders were about to go under 12 seconds. John McClelland of Agiskoviner.com couldn’t quite match Varnish’s time with an 11.861 but Lee Povey of Team Terminator could. His 11.450 shaving a hundredth or so off the fastest time of the day.
Third fastest of the four riders in the category was Marlon Moncrieffe of Oakwood Racers CT with a 12.372.
Straight in to Semi-Finals and Povey dropped Paul Butler (Sydenham Wheelers) with two to go to guarantee at least a Silver. Moncreiffe made McClelland work a little harder, taking the initiative and holding the lead until the last 50 metres, before having to settle for the Bronze medal ride-off.
Moncreiffe took the Bronze, but the final saw Povey shadowed all the way to the bell by McClelland, before the big sprinter from Brighton (and trackcycling coaching columnist) pulled away to wrap up the title.
The final category, the 30-34s, saw another four riders dip under 12 seconds. Indeed, one of them – Bruce Croall of City of Edinburgh RC – came close to dipping under 11. His 11.077 was the fastest of the day by some margin. Next up was Ben Elliot of VC St Raphael with 11.387 and his team mate Jamie Streather with 11.851. Just scraping in to the exclusive club with an 11.956 was Rhys Thomas of CC Cardiff.
Croall moved through to the Semis with a win over Kyleigh Manners (VC St Raphael), whose hopes of progression now rested on the 4-up Repechage. Elliot joined Croall in the penultimate round with a win over Neil Withington (Andersons Racing) and Streather also made it through, beating off Thomas and a hard charging Miles Stovold (Dulwich Paragon CC), who might have done better if he’d started charging a little earlier!
The Repechage was won by Thomas, who completed the Semi-Final line-up. Against the flying Croall, though, there wasn’t much he could do and the Scot won comfortably to move through to the final. Elliot joined him, after an altogether cagier match up with his team mate Streather.
Streather couldn’t match Thomas for pace in the Bronze medal ride, so the Welshman would join a Scot and an Englishman on the podium. And it would be a Scot on the top step – in Newport if not at Wimbledon – as Croall pulled away from Elliot to take the win and the title.
Running alongside the Masters competition is the CWAD National Championships. Today it was the CWAD 200m Time Trial competition, run for different categories of athletes and decided using a combination of actual times recorded and an equivalence factor which are combined to give a points total. The Bronze medal went to the tandem pairing of Barney Storey and Neil Fachie with a time of 10.799 seconds and 96.398 points. The Silver went to another tandem – this time ridden by former shot putter and weight lifter Dave Readle and Simon Jackson. Their time of 10.729 converted in to 97.027 points.
The title, though, went to Jody Cundy. His time of 11.371 clocked up 100.765 points and was a new World Record.