(We let him write his own headlines. We know we shouldn’t, but we can’t help ourselves – Ed)
Under threat of rain and darkening skies another good turnout on Monday night saw a long night of action, mainly behind the red Palmer Park Derny’s, with everyone sharing the spoils.
The Senior started their evening with everyone starting from the home straight for a 10 lap Scratch race. Multiple attacks from many riders came to nought until with 4 laps to go Steve Legg, rolling his vast 100 inch gear, blasted off to open a comfortable lead on the pack, and although hoping that someone would join him to share the effort, soldiered on to win comfortably from a fast finishing Felix English, with Harriet Owen finishing third overall which was an equally great result and Donal Linehan taking the best placed B rider placing.
Steve Legg winning the 10 lap opening Scratch race
The Derny’s then trundled onto the track for the heats and this saw some great battles as riders competed for Finals selection.
The Womens race was a straight final though and saw Harriet Owen power away comfortably , followed home by Under 16’s rider Natalie Hill with Jayne Paine third.
The A Category Finals of the Dernys saw a dominant display of riding from 16 year old Matt Gittings and he easily won the final by over half a lap from a chasing Bryan Taylor and Sam Sturgeon.
16 year old Matt Gittings, paced by George Gilbert, convincingly wins the A’s Derny Final
The B’s final saw a battle of the Under 16’s as Cam Swarbrick and Frazier Carr rode absolutely on their limits, side by side for two of the last three laps with Swarbrick finally breaking the deadlock but having to hang on to his derny in the last 60 metres to stay clear of Carr, with Donal Linehan mopping up the third placing.
Cam Swarbrick, paced by George Gilbert (again – must be good eh!), flying round the final bend to win the B’s Derny Final.
With so much time taken up with Derny heats there was only time for half the normal 20 km AW Cycles Endurance race, so 10 km was the distance and boy did it increase the speed and attacking nature of the race.
Attack after attack saw small groups escape only to be bought back again and again, with the cord finally breaking between the field and a very select group of fastmen with 8 laps to go.
This didn’t stop the chasers but they did end up being spectators as Bryan Taylor wound up those high speed legs to hold off Matt Gittings and Felix English. The B’s best place man was Gavin Spiers and the first Women home was Jayne Paine.
Bryan Taylor leads home the fastmen in the AW Cycles 10 km race, from Matt Gittings (obscured), with Felix English (on the red line) holding onto third
The Youths had a full program of events including their own Derny Race heats and finals, 1 Lap Handicap, Unknown Distance, 5 lap Scratch and with William Macke winning all of the Under 16’s, George Withers three out of four in the Under 14’s with Joseph Linehan and Reg Pay sharing two wins apiece in the Under 12/10s, it was a good nights racing for all the youth riders. Biggest cheer had to go to Euan Macleod – who at 6 years old, hung on like a trooper to the derny in his heats and looked like he was having a thoroughly great time behind the derny of experienced pacer Sean Bannister.
On the inside line in blue, Ex-National Derny Pacer champion Sean Bannister (with Vicki Pendleton) pacing 6 year old Euan Macleod in his 6 lap Derny heat.