SUNDAY saw the opening round of the Lewes Wanderers time trialling season with the running of the eagerly anticipated circuit of Laughton.
The 12.46-mile course is one of the flatter circuits on the club calendar, though it is not an easy ride by any stretch of the imagination. Predicted heavy rain persuaded may of the original entrants to take a ‘duvet day’, preferring the comfort of home as opposed to getting thoroughly soaked and half frozen to death on a bleak early Spring morning. After the push off, competitors had a short run up Shortage Lane to turn left and head down the Broyle. The slippery roads forced riders to ease up when turning and the blustery cross winds caused a few wobbly moments as the racers sped down the Broyle at breakneck speeds over 30mph before slowing for Kennel Corner. Another gruelling lap of the circuit brought the riders back to Laughton to cross the finishing line all but spent after 30 minutes or so of eyeball popping effort. It is a credit to the starters that they all safely navigated the course and exercised the necessary degree of caution required for the prevalent conditions. Among the non-starters was defending champion Nick Dwyer, leaving the race wide open for the three main contenders on the day. Pete Morris, in a fine time of 29:01, just edged Tom Glandfield (29:28) to take the honours, with Mark Frost having a top ride and finishing with a time of 30:05, fast enough to secure third place along with top spot in the veteran’s competition.
The handicap event was won by Horry Hemsley (42:30) closely followed by Alan Stevens (33:41) and Tony Sinnett (34:29). The remaining two Veterans awards go to Micky Turner (31:49) and Chris Martin (32:53).
Other notable performances on the day were Junior rider Dan Gardener (31:56) and Anne Locke, the only Lady rider brave enough to test herself on such a miserable day, who completed the course in a creditable time of 44:09.
The whole event was splendidly organised by Martyn Crawford and his team, who all deserve special medals of their own for braving the foul conditions to ensure that the event ran as smoothly as it did.
More details of all club activities can be found at the club website: www.leweswanderers.co.uk