Lancaster University Criterium: 11th Place In A Fast Early Season Race

On Saturday afternoon I traveled up from Wilmslow where we were staying for the weekend to Lancaster to ride in the early season crits at the Salt Ayre Circuit.

On arrival I had the chance to catch up with now Catford Banks Rider Matt Webster. I also found that a lot of the field had also turned up from the classic early season race, the Eddie Seons Memorial, which was held earlier in the day.

This meant that a lot of people were going to be keen. It proved to be true and after 15 minutes of riding the race pace was touching 30 mph average! With breaks going and being rode back it was a busy first half of the race. Just after 30 mins I put an attack in myself. Going into the cross tail wind and then making the circuits full 180 degree turn at the bottom I came back out into the cross head wind with a large gap that was bridged over to by another rider. With two of us working we increased the gap very quickly and after a couple of laps a Brother NRG rider bridge over. At this moment we were catching the lead rider of the race and their was an acceleration of speed which I failed to jump on the back of. Missing the wheel and with the lead riders only accelerating I could not get back on the wind despite a good effort to do so.

It was a busy moment with a couple of other riders bridging at that time. The outcome was that there was a group of four up the road and two of us accepting we would be caught later in the race. Having been caught the break which looked to split up could now be seen coming up the opposite direction of the circuit. 

With the race being so fast, I went back to the bunch preferring over the option of staying out with the strong liklyhood of getting caught. With five away coming to the end of the race, the bunch sprint was for 6th place which was taken by Harry Tanfield. I was able to take 11th place. Robert Smail of Brother NRG Driveplan won the race.

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