Thrilling battle unfolds in two-up team cycling time trial

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LAST Sunday saw a thrilling battle unfold in the ESCA two-up team time trail.

This discipline demands a sympathetic symbiotic understanding from the pairings. Ideally both riders should be of equal ability and pace each other around the course, each taking turns to lead, with the other rider taking shelter and recovering in the draft. If the workload is equally shared, the mutual benefits to each rider will be significant.

Unfortunately this egalitarian state seldom exists, for in most instances one rider is stronger than the other. In such cases team work and continual communication are vital, for if the stronger rider is not aware of his fellow rider’s weaknesses the elastic will snap and the pair will not perform to there fullest potential. Unfortunately for the Lewes squad, several riders were hit by a mystery virus, which caused last minute withdrawals. The rules of time trialling are such that when the field has been set, no alterations can be made, so no permissive partner swapping is allowed here! John Mankelow and your correspondent were allowed to ride the event as solo competitors. John completed the course in a creditable time of 1:08:52 with your correspondent clocking a 1:01:52. Natasha Fuller also ended up riding solo in a time of 1:05:34 as the unlucky Chris Martin was forced to withdraw halfway through the race due to illness. It was pleasing to see the Wanderers supplying teams in all classes. Sisters Helen and Sarah Dwyer completed the course in a creditable time of 1:17:53, whilst promising Juniors Callum Middleton and Dan Gardner put aside their friendly rivalry to form a formidable pairing enabling them to fly around the course in a time of 1:01:02.

The top three pairings on the day all had incredible rides and were only separated by the finest of margins. In third place were the perennial bridesmaids in this event, Nick Dwyer and Rob Pelham, with a blistering time of 53:48. In second position was the Eastbourne Rovers pairing of Iain Brogden and Matthew Woods (53:17). Coming top of the pile, with an absolutely brilliant ride were the dynamic duo of Pete Morris and Tom Glandfield, who won the event by a close, but telling, seven-second margin. The two-up battle continues this Sunday with the running of the SCA event, which will undoubtedly attract a class field of competitors. More details of all these rides plus further club activities can be found at www.leweswanderers.co.uk