CYCLING: Bronze for world champion Roach

Phil Roach
Phil Roach

British cyclo-cross championships in Wales

Last weekend it was the World Masters Cyclo-Cross Championships in Switzerland. This weekend it was the British Cyclo-Cross Championships at Abergavenny, South Wales.

World Masters Champion and reigning British Champion Phil Roach always knew it would be a tough battle to retain his title.

The Team Jewson-MI Racing-Polypipe rider led from the start, and was joined by two former professionals Tim Gould and Chris Young, both multi national champions in the past,

At the start of the second lap, Roach lost the lead when he fell on a tight bend on the road section. With tyres at 22psi to suit the muddy conditions, he lost it on a very tight bend, which was all his rival needed to attack.

From then on it was a battle to keep the gap from increasing and at the same time to prevent former champion and fellow World Master Steve Davies from catching him. This he did in brilliant style to claim the bronze medal. Not the one he wanted, but nevertheless a place on the podium .

Roach led his team into third place in the team competition, with Pete Smith coming from the back of the starting grid to a very impressive 23rd and 5th in his age group. Wellesbourne’s Tim Stowe finished 28th, and 6th in his age group. Coventry’s Pete Busby was 34th after a very promising start. And 67-year-old Barrie Mitchell from Marton finished in 67th place and 5th in his age group.

In the championship for riders 40-49 years the evergreen Steve Knight led his Jewson Team to second place, with a brilliant ride that this former British champion often produces.

Possibly one of the fastest riders on the circuit, he forced his way up into a brilliant 10th place. Team mate Mark James, who for much of the race was around the top 10 position, finally finished 15th and Midland series Champion Phil Blacker finished 20th, a brilliant effort from all three riders. Knight finished 6th in his age group and James 8th.

l Next weekend the riders are in battle again, this time in the LVRC National Championships at Misterton Hall, near Lutterworth, starting at 1pm.

It is expected that the team will once again dominate the championships. It is hoped that both of their World Masters Champions, Roach and Ives will be riding.