Brilliant Benians in fine form for Wanderers
Joe Benians continued his scintillating spring form in the Southborough & District Wheelers come-and-try-it time trial.
On a warm and sunny evening he scorched round the 11.72-mile course comprising almost three laps of an anti-clockwise loop starting and ending just south-east of Groombridge in 28min 47sec.
If not for a dropped chain and a puncture he would have clearly gone even faster.
And it took a new course record from the last man off to demote him to runner-up spot.
Fellow Lewes Wanderer Graham Faultless rode strongly to finish 12th of 31 entrants in 34:43.
On the same evening, but back on the more familiar time-trial environs of the A22, Peter Baker placed eighth of 21 starters in round two of Eastbourne Rovers’ series of events.
It was similarly dry and sunny, if somewhat colder, for the East Sussex Cycling Association (ESCA) 10-mile event.
Benians continued in the same vein in terms of performance and misfortune as he suffered another flat tyre, but reduced his personal best for the distance by 1.01 to record 21:46 and come 15th of 76 finishers.
Among the Lewes contingent, however, he still had to give best to Rob Rollings, who took eighth with a time of 21.12, and Nick Dwyer, in 14th with 21:41.
Sally Turner, racing for trainSharp, was second fastest female and 29th overall in a fine 22:49, with Lisa Davis (DRAG2ZERO) fourth and 45th in 24:17.
Kate Parrish (eighth and 58th in 25:47) narrowly got the better of clubmate Kate Thomas who was ninth quickest female from 12 to compete and 59th out of 76 overall to finish.
It proved to be a very similar story the following morning for the corresponding ESCA 25.
Once again Benians set a new personal best; this time taking more than two minutes off his previous best as he stopped the watch after 56.19 of effort to claim 15th place.
On this occasion however sixth-placed Dwyer (54:22) edged out Rollings (55:06) who had to settle for ninth position from the 67 finishers.
Benians wasn’t the only Wanderer to set a PB on this day however as 29th-placed Paul Fletcher (trainSharp) broke the hour mark for the first time with a 58:48 and Gavin Richards in 35th improved by almost half-a-minute to 1:00:55.
Turner (trainSharp) was third fastest female and 27th overall with her time of 58:26, while Parrish came 52nd and fifth of the 11 female competitors in 1:05:54.
by PAGET COHEN