Round three of the Freewheelers racing continued with just as much enthusiasm and commitment as we have become to expect from this part of the League. To reflect this coaches and organisers have included full electronic timing (chips on each bike) just the same as the older riders. Racing started with the A group 4 Lap Scratch where the racing was even until Ethan Steinke took a decisive lead which he held until the end of the race. Will Shaw, Ray Lovell and Henry Lewis all gave chase but despite considerable efforts this was the order that they all crossed the finishing line. The B event was a 2 Lap Scratch where Liam Spruce took the initiative as soon as the race started going straight into the lead. Oliver Ward, Josh Wood and Olivia Green all eventually managed to catch him with James Wood taking fifth place.
There then followed two Keirin races with Junior rider Seb Bacon taking the place of the motorcycle. The A riders soon fell into an orderly formation behind Seb who was setting a good pace. He pulled off after a lap leaving the field to race the final lap. It was Ethan Steinke who took the win again and again followed by Will Shaw, Ray Lovell and Henry Lewis. The B event saw another win for Oliver Ward but it was Olivia Green who took second place this time followed by Josh Wood, Liam Spruce and James Wood.
The final Freewheelers event of the evening was the Italian Pursuit which they are well used to at the Friday night track sessions but this time it was for points! The two teams were based around Will Shaw and Ethan Steinke but as there were an odd number of riders it fell on Ethan to race two laps instead of everyone else’s one lap. The first efforts were made by Josh and James and then for the second laps it was Henry and Olivia as Will’s team started to pull ahead. Then it was Oliver and Ray’s turns before Ethan had to take on first Liam and Will and then Will on his own. By this time Will’s team had a significant lead and although Ethan did make up some time it was not enough so it was a win for Will’s team. This has been an excellent evening of racing for the Freewheelers and if this continues, as I’m sure it will, the season should prove to be full of more excitement and thrills for us all.
Wednesday evening at Aldersley Stadium saw the Wheelers Annual Roller Championship AKA as the 'Race to Nowhere'. Normally held earlier in the year, the date was delayed until a substitute set of competition rollers could be found whilst the clubs equipment was refurbished.
With last years Youth and Senior Champions not available to defend their titles, the door was open for new names to make their presence felt.
The youth races saw a wide age range from under 6 to under 16 year old, girls and boys vying for the honours.
After the first round where each rider was timed over a 250m flying start it was under 14's rider Grace Lister who held top spot with 10.72 seconds.
Going into the second round over 500M, Grace held 1.16 second advantage over second placed Will Farmer who was the leading Under 16 boy. In third spot lay Elodie Gage also under 16 but 2.44 seconds back.
Grace was the epitome of style, whilst her legs were a complete blur her upper body remained rock solid. To sustain such a high cadence over the longer distance was very impressive indeed!
Whilst Grace put in even more time into her rivals, Elodie closed the gap on Will but not by enough to secure second spot overall. Thus they retain their positions overall.
Tom White was the fastest under 14 boy & Henry Lewis the fastest under 10 year old.
The diminutive Kyle Crossan, the youngest rider in the field put in a courageous ride for an under 6 year old.
The race for the Seniors, Juniors (17-17 years), Veterans (40+ years old) and Ladies saw a number of new faces tak on the challenge.
These riders competed over 500M and 1,000M respectively. which doesn't seem far - unless you are in complete agony after only half distance!
Times were very quick this year using rollers kind lent to us by Paul Swinnerton of Swinnerton Cycles in Stoke - many thanks Paul.
The opening 500M round saw Jake White break the 20 second barrier with an impressive 19.87s.
In second place after the first round was Steve White 0.75s back - A former Champion and hoping to go one better than runner's up spot held for the last two years. In third place at this point was Seb Bacon, last years Junior champion, 1.26 seconds off the lead.
However the 1,000M test can and did shake things up....
Due to his 3rd place seeding Seb faced veteran Alan Cooper in his 'Head to Head' over one kilometer....
Seb produced a wonderfully measured performance in great style to clock an impressive 45.35 seconds.
The two top seeds Jake and Steve were up against each other in the final ride of the evening....
Both riders started fast but it was Steve who held the advantage as Jake desperately tried to close the gap...
Despite setting two personal best times Steve's total was still not enough to take the title just seven tenths of a second behind the new champion - Seb Bacon.
Jake held on or third spot a mere one tenth of a second further back!!!
All in all an excellent evenings racing - many thanks to all those who assisted with running the event and to the riders for taking part.