GRAVES BACK IN THE TT SERIES
Four years after he last rode the Time Trial Series and seven years after he won three legs of the Series Philip Graves (Clifton CC York) returned to claim victory in the Buxton CC Mountain Time Trial at Longnor, Staffordshire. The International Triathlete took 1-23-26 to cover the 33 testing miles to win by 59 seconds from Tejvan Pettinger (Sri Chinmoy CT) with Brett Harwood (Terry Wright Cycles) at 1-32 in third place.
Graves established an early lead in the three-lap event, taking 26-49 for the first 11 miles against Pettinger's 27-30 and Harwood's 28-02. At this point Matt Clinton (Mike Vaughan Cycles) was in third with his 27-41.
With 22 miles covered Graves led Pettinger by 32 seconds, Harwood by 1-34 and Clinton by 1-58. The final 11 miles saw Graves pull further clear to win his first TT Series event since 2009.
WIN NUMBER 7 FOR 2016
"I've been lucky with my sponsors so it means I've become a full time cyclist this season (this was his seventh win on the trot) while I recover from the injury that has kept me out of Triathlons. I have a torn ligament and Achilles tendon, that has put a stop to running and hence Trithlons. But it has allowed me to concentrate on cycling while the trouble clears up so I have been racing as much as possible, " Graves explained. "Now I'm looking forward to the next two rounds,the Beacon RCC and Border City Wheelers events."
Runner-up Tejvan Pettinger lost time on the last lap. "I lost it on the long climb in to the wind the last time, it was very hard with a lot of wind to fight against." he said. He like Graves will be at the Beacon RCC event.
"I always do a good ride here, I enjoy the course even though it was a hard slog in to the head-wind climb for the first part of the circuit, then it was a side wind followed by a helpfull tail-wind to the run towards the finish," Brett Harwood said. How did he explain his 13th place in last week's Chelmer CC event? "Don't laugh but afterwards I found my brake-blocks had been rubbing."
In the Espoirs competition Jack O'Neil (Mike Vaughan Cycles) took it from last year's Espoirs Champion Christopher Fennell (Thanet CC) and Michael Caley (VeloViewer) with his 1-26-40.
Conditions for the event were good for everyone,even if the head- wind start didn't help, with sunny conditions prevailing all day which no doubt helped bring out the spectators who kept the refreshment stall busy at the HQ in St Bartholmew's Primary School. The three tea-shops in Longnor also had a bumber day.
NUMBER TWO FOR ROSE
With the Podium Ambition powered by Club La Santa team at near full strength, only Katie Archibald (last year's winner) being unable to ride, was it going to be another clean sweep by the team led by multi-World Champion Sarah Storey.
Well with four in the first five they couldn't complain. As in the Chelmer CC event it was Claire Rose who topped the tables, a 1-01-08 giving her victory for the two-lap, 22 miles time trial. It was 25 year-old Elizabeth Stedman (Fusion RT-Fierlan), an early starter, who claimed second place with her 1-03-42 to spoil Podium Ambitions' hopes of a 1-2-3.
Stedman held the lead until Rose stormed home with her 1-01-08. Storey was only five seconds behind Stedman at 11 miles but lost a further 52 on the second leg to finish with a 1-04-39, third.
"Being with Podium Ambition allows me to do full time cycling and this has its advantages," Rose said, who is a junior doctor by profession. Last year she finished sixth to Archibald. Back in 2012, as Claire Greenway. she was fourth in the RTTC National `25` and second in the `10`.
TURNBULL TOP VET
Ther was the usual good turn out of Veterans and it was Mark Turnbull (TORQ Performance) who won beating Round One winner Ian Holbrook (Stone Wheelers) with Jo Le Sage (Rutland CC) third. Turbull clocked 58-59 for the 22 miles, Holbrook 59-35, and Le Sage 59-40. They were the only Vets to beat the hour for the tough course. Turnbull reckoned he felt better "on the second lap." WADDONHolbrook managed to top the Target Time competition ahead of Paul Robinson (Lyme RC) and James Cusick (Dooleys RT).
WADDON GOES FOR RIO
Series regular Rik Waddon (Para T) again showed the way home in the Paracyclists' event taking 1-04-23 for the 22 miles, adjusted to 56-02, with David Murphy (Liverpool Mercury-Dolan CC) and Matthew Robertson (Woolwich CC) completing the podium trio.
"I am really pleased with my ride, the brilliant course suited me. My aim is to get selected for the Rio Olympics, I just missed getting to the Worlds' by 15 seconds," Waddon said.
The Crewe Clarions' James Holmes came out on top in the Junior's 22-mile test, a 59-38 giving him a 35 seconds beating of Sam Walsham (Bikebox-Alan) with Lewis Hartley (Inspire VCUK Youth racing Team) at 1-49.
The next round of the RTTC Classic Series is promoted by the Beacon RCC on 24 April.