Multiple national tandem record holders Rachael Elliott and Ian Greenstreet (AeroCoach) added the 50-mile comp record to the list, slicing 1-25 off the previous mark while Mark Smith and Jackie Field were solo winners in the East District Championships staged by CC Breckland in Norfolk.
Greenstreet and Elliott clocked 1-37-47 to set a new mark for 50 miles on a mixed tandem, adding to the records they already hold over 15, 25, and 30 miles.
Their record was all the more impressive given that conditions weren’t ideal.
Early downpours hit the first starters and left the roads wet and slippery. It also washed some sharp stones onto the course which caused several DNFs, and there were around 15 riders who came off on roundabouts.
Hot favourite Dan Bigham pulled his rear wheel out of alignment as he powered away from the start, and did the same again later in the race. With no Allen key, he was forced to stop his effort and was a DNF.
Smith’s winning time of 1-38-51 was a new course record and just two seconds faster than second-placed Mark Richards, the DAP CC rider who led them to the team prize with third-placed Harley Matthews and Nick Esser.
Jackie Field was quickest of the women, the veteran setting a women’s course record of 1-51-27. That gave her the win by more than two and a half minutes from Lizi Duncombe (Full Gas RT), with Bath CC’s Kim Barfoot-Brace taking third.
Smith’s win was his second open time trial victory this year so far, having won the Sussex CA hilly 25 back in early March. He was second in both the Dorking CC 29.9 and Southern Counties CA 21, and since lockdown was fourth in the Sussex CA 50 a fortnight ago.
He is down to ride next Sunday’s National 12-Hour Championships, and will be aiming to go one better than the second spot he secured in the title race 12 months ago.
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1 Mark Smith (Crawley Wheelers) 1-38-51
2. Mark Richards (DAP CC) 1-38-53
3. Harley Matthews (DAP CC) 1-40-00
4. Daniel Colman (Arctic Aircon RT) 1-41-16
5. Matthew Brooke (Full Gas RT) 1-43-23
6. Darran Bennett (Ely & Dist CC) 1-43-44
1. Jackie Field (CC Ashwell) 1-51-27
2. Lizi Duncombe (Full Gas RT) 1-54-03
3. Kim Barfoot-Brace (Bath CC) 1-54-04
Veterans on std:
1. Andrew Grant (Cambridge CC) +42.30
2. David Hargreaves (North Lancashire RC) +41.36
3. David Shepherd (a3crg) +39.24
Team: DAP CC (Mark Richards, Harley Matthews, Nick Esser)
Tandems: Ian Greenstreet & Rachael Elliott (AeroCoach) 1-37-47 (national competition record)