However the Oxonian CC had laid out a challenging course on the school playing fields linked by some technical wooded sections and connected to the upper and lower fields by some very steep banks. The course even dried a little in the wind although some of the grass corners where a little slippery, not surprising after 49 riders in the U12 race and one of them was 3rd place local lad Rowan Turner (Poole Wheelers) who put in a brilliant ride from a large entry. Also 29 riders in the youth race, not to mention the 87 in Vets, Women and Junior race and all had lap the course many times over. So the course was well run in for the main race of the day containing 50 Senior riders.
The start of the senior race was a fast affair with Ben Sumner (Beeline Cycles) taking off at the head of the race at a very rapid pace closely followed by Luke Gray (Trek Cyclo-Cross Collective), and within less than a minute the U23 pair had gapped the rest of the field headed by Mike Cotty (wheelbase Cannondale) and Crispin Doyle (Hargroves). Doyle who for the second week running had opted to race the senior race after yet again winning the Vets race.
On the first accent of the step bank next to the pits it was Ben in the lead and first to quickly run the up the bank. Once over the top and back on his bike, he took a quick glance over his shoulder and was surprised to see Luke on his bike almost touching his rear wheel. Luke made quick work of the bank staying on his bike and was one of the few riders able to ride the bank and the only one to ride it every lap. Behind the leading pair Mike Cotty and Crispin had started to pull away from the main field leaving Matt Woods (Hargroves) heading the main charge.
Somewhere round the second lap and after repeated attacks Sumner managed to gain a small gap on Gray, while the chasers had also split leaving Doyle on his own ahead of Cotty. Halfway into the race Ben had a 30 second lead on Gray with only a dozen seconds back to Doyle, Cotty was now a long way back. In the meantime Cotty's brother James (Cannondale Racing) was running to the pits for a bike change with a rolled tub on his back wheel.
In the last two laps Gray slipped off on a tight slippery grass bend trying to over take a backmarker loosing some time to Sumner, but was now quite ahead of chaser Doyle. Come the last lap Sumner blasted in to take the win from Gray by just over a minute, who in turn was nearly a minute in front of the last podium position man Doyle, where the top 3 riders all chose to use dry tyres which proved to be a wise choice in the end.
Thanks to Rob/Luke Gray
1st Ben Sumner Beeline Cycles
2nd Luke Gray Trek Cross Collective @1min 07secs
3rd Crispin Doyle Hargroves Cycles @1min 55secs
4th Michael Cotty Wheelbase Cannondale @2mins 15secs
5th Matt Woods Hargroves Cycles
21st Tim Mcdowell Bournemouth Jubilee @ 1lap
1st Crispin Doyle Hargroves Cycles
2nd Mike Simpson GS Henley @50secs
3rd Lewis King Beeline Cycles @1min 38secs
4th Keith Sheridan Cotswold Veldrijden @2mins 0secs
5th Sean Williams Wightlink Offshore @ 2mins 10secs
40th Simon Meadwell Bournemouth Jubilee @1 lap
1st Claire Smith Cotswold Veldrijden
2nd Sarah Barber North Hants RC
3rd Anna Cipullo Dame Cycling
1st Joseph Andrews Fareham Wheelers
2nd Mike Ponzo Swindon RC
3rd Jack Saunders Cotswold Veldrijden
1st Chris Rothwell SCRA
2nd Ed Gronbech Oxford City RC
3rd Elliott Lassiter Cotswold Veldrijden
4th Tom Sewell Cotswold Veldrijden
5th Thomas Timberlake Dyson Cycles
22nd Rebbeca Hurst Poole Wheelers Y
27th Lucy Gadd Poole Wheelers U14
1st Maddie Wadsworth Beeline Cycles Under 12 Girl
2nd Anna Wadsworth Beeline Cycles
3rd Rowan Turner Poole Wheelers Under 12 Boy
4th Jed Smithson Oxonian Under 10 Boy
5th Emily Conn PPV
6th Madeline Cooper Chapel Tri stars Under 10 Girl
10th Max Meadwell Bournemouth Jubilee