Spalding’s Five-Mile Time Trial Championships was an exceptional event in terms of conditions, the make-up of the field and quality of racing.
Compared to the cold and windy 2015 race which had a field of eight, last week’s sunny and cool dry weather encouraged 22 members and 15 guests to line up for timekeepers Sharon Fensom, Nicky Ellis and Jo Bellars.
From the entire field a total of seven families were represented with two or more members riding.
Of those four were from the Wright family while the next biggest group of three – the Gurneys – included Ed making his time trial debut in the under-14s category under the watchful eye of his dad. Ed put in a great ride finishing with 18:47 in 21st position.
Due to the size of the field the usual gap of one minute between each starter was reduced to 30 seconds and with favourable conditions that led to fast and close racing with six riders posting times inside 12 minutes and a new course record of 11:01 being set by guest rider Max Williamson of the HMT team.
In the Club Championships, Ben Moore – enjoying some fine early-season form – was fastest Spalding member and the only club rider inside 12 minutes, recording 11:31.
Matt Ellis, riding as a second claim member, took both second place and first under-16 with his 12:17.
Ross McGivern made up the podium with 12:36 just 11 seconds quicker than Simon Wright and Mark Hills who tied on fourth place with 12:47.
Jake Norton and Will Gurney made up the under-16 category with ride times of 13:38 and 14:59 respectively while Tom Wright was best under-14 on 16:17.
The ladies competition was headed by second claim member Tilly Gurney who stopped the clock in 10th place with a personal best time of 13:58 – almost two minutes quicker than her 2015 time.
Natasha Tooley posted 14:41 for second place while Sophie Wright crossed the line on 17:08 to complete the podium.
Andy Barnard, in a return to time trialling, produced 13:25 to claim sixth overall while Gary Bentley (13:55) was just 10 seconds slower than his 2014 time.
Other Spalding times: Derek Chamberlain 13:19, Shane Norton 14:35, Richard Flatters 14:53, Paul Kendall 15:36, Barry Drew 16:14, Nicole Flatters 17:50, Super Vet Bill Wood 18:10, Katie Wright 18:59.
Using their experience on this course as recent Spalding members, guest riders Neil Palmer (Velo One) 11:20 and Chris Ward (Swift RT) 11:28 were second and third overall.
Best lady guest rider Sian Botteley of Starley Racing posted 13:26 followed in by Louise Day of Swift RT with 14:37.
Other guest times: Josh Wallis 11:34, Anthony Gough 11:36, Adam Ellis 13:15, Dan Carr 21:30, Adam Botteley 12:38, Bryn Richards 13:10, Gareth Richards 13:17, Lee Thomas 14:35.
Unattached riders: Jason Booth 13:22, Frazer Wallis 13:55.