Cycle duo’s Bradford battle

Boneshakers' rider Edwyn Oliver-Evans. (S)
Boneshakers' rider Edwyn Oliver-Evans. (S)

With the cyclocross season drawing to a climax, riders from Boneshakers Racing Team competed in the fifth round of the National Trophy Cyclocross Series at Peel Park, Bradford.

First race of the day was the 70 strong veterans event for competitors over 40 years of age.

Steve Smales started the event from the back of the starting grid and settled into a smooth rhythm on the technical and muddy course.

With a large crowd spectating on the notorious descent, the usual carnage ensued with around a third of the field falling in the treacherous conditions of the first lap.

Despite the challenging conditions, Smales stayed upright and was able to finish in 32nd place on the same lap as the winner James Bryan.

After missing the previous two rounds of the national series, Boneshakers’ Edwyn Oliver-Evans had to settle for poor gridding position in the Junior race.

However, the junior rider took little notice of this and was soon in a small group of riders, in about 15th position.

Oliver-Evans eventually finished in 17th place, after crashing, on the final lap on the same notorious descent that caused such problems in the veterans event.

With the National Trophy event behind them, the duo moved on to compete in Sunday’s round of the Yorkshire Points Series at Thornes Park, Wakefield.

Following a hard frost, the course rapidly changed as subsequent races softened the ground with the racing line changing virtually by the hour.

In the 80-strong veterans event, Smales suffered his usual poor start but was in robust mood and was able to make rapid progress around the technical woodland course.

Despite a heavy crash which broke his helmet, the Nidderdale based rider managed to move up into seventh place and maintain a comfortable gap on the chasers to score a rare top ten placing.

Ted Sarmiento, of Harrogate Nova CC finished in a respectable 48th place in conditions that tested even the most committed riders. Next up was the senior mens and junior race.

By this time, the course had thawed out and had become even more challenging.

After a poor start, Oliver-Evans made his way up through the field to finish first Junior category rider.

The performance is particularly impressive given that Oliver-Evans was just seventh rider across the line, despite competing against seasoned senior riders of a high quality.