CYCLING: Spalding duo reverse last year’s top spots

Helen Wallis at the start of Drop Bar Challenge.
Helen Wallis at the start of Drop Bar Challenge.
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A busy week for members of Spalding Cycling Club was top and tailed by presentations to members of the Go Ride section, Kieran and Caitlin Taylor.

On Tuesday, before the start of the evening event,Go Ride co-ordinator Jo Kendall presented Keiran and his family with a cheque for £200 on behalf of the club in support of the fund for his treatment in the US later in the year.

Despite his condition, Keiran is a keen, active member of Go Ride. Club members wish him well and hope the treatment is successful and that he will be able to return to enjoy Go Ride fully fit and healthy.

Following the presentation, the Taylor family stayed to watch some of the racing.

Friday evening was Caitlin’s turn to receive an award – this time at the rugby club after the Go Ride session.

In 2016, Caitlin was voted by the Go Ride committee - Shane Norton, Jo and Megan Kendall - as Best Go Rider of the Year, recognising her regular attendance and skills improvement, a fine example for her fellow Go Riders to follow.

Fittingly, the presentation, made by Shane Norton, was made at the end of a Go Ride session with the Go Ride group.

The Drop Bar Challenge saw 19 starters – 15 club members and 4 guests - racing over the 10 miles using standard machines, with multiple gears, or fixed and single free speed.

Some good times were posted and, in the case of those who usually ride the standard road bike, consistently close to their other 10 mile results. Last year, it was Ben Moore who topped the leader board with 24:37 and runner-up was Matt Ellis with 24:46 – this year the positions were reversed, with Matt on 23:41 and Ben on 24:40. Frazer Wallis was just inside 26 minutes with his 25:58.

Using a standard road bike to time trial effectively, Sophie Wright and Helen Wallis both posted their season’s best times of 32:23 and 32:33.

Simon Wright put in a fine ride, taking just 26:23 to finish – a big improvement over the 28:05 recorded for 2016 - while a ride time of 26:59 for Ross McGivern was just two seconds slower than his 26:57 from 2016.

Riding a slightly low gear on his single freewheel bike matching his club kit, Andrew Gurney chased Ross all the way, eventually finishing on 27:03, just ahead of Tom Wright in 27:22.

Mark Hills 28:43 was a bit slower than his 2016 time but his bike was built in the 1980s and a bit reluctant to work well. Simon Hare posted 29:34, while Brian Johnson finished with 32:05. Out of the competition, Andy Bowser rode deep section wheels to finish with 25:37

This more relaxed event also offered Adrian Thurston and guest rider and ex member Chris Ward of Team Swift the opportunity to test their legs after a long period off the bike.

Choosing to ride fixed gear, Adrian had a steady ride to record a time of 35:14, while Chris posted 27:17.

Of the other guests, all Velo One riders, Josh Wallis used a TT bike to record 22:18 while Neil Palmer and Adam Ellis finished in 24:12 and 25:16 respectively.