THE Fulford Cycles Evening Time Trial League began last week.
With 2010 and 2011 Champion Ian Fairweather announcing last year that he wouldn’t be defending his title in order to concentrate on the higher-level open scene a number of riders had spent the winter training hard in the hope of taking the series of best nine events of 18.
The event itself played out in terrible conditions with roads covered in water.
Twenty five riders braved the nine-mile course from Farnham to Knaresborough Golf Club, through Ferrensby to Minskip, Staveley and back.
Former top-level racer Paul Lamb of Nova broke the veterans’ course record with 21:43, a time that ended up being third quickest.
Nova’s Dave Morris training is paying off with a massive improvement over his personal best but 21:44 meant he missed a podium by a single second.
The real story of the night however was the battle for the top two places.
Making a rare league appearance Boneshakers-Trek top man and arguably the area’s best Timetrialler over the last decade, Steve Smales, was astonishingly pipped to the win by Nova’s Duncan Mullier by six seconds, in a new veterans course record of 21:07.
Mullier professed it was the greatest ride of his life.
In fifth place came TT rookie Mike Worden (22:22), while for sixth ex-Boneshakers Glen Turnbull (22:48) narrowly beat Edwyn Oliver-Evans of Boneshakers-Trek.
Oliver-Evans now holds practically all the School-Boy records and has now made a start on the Junior records, having gone up an age category, with 22:58.
Nova newcomer, Simon Cave debuted with eighth place in 23:02, three seconds ahead of team-mate Rob Senior who was 11 seconds ahead of Nova’s Chris Mawer.
Tommy Buckle was the fastest school-boy in 23rd overall with 29:52.
The ladies event was won by Alison Sarmiento in 28:00.
The Open scene has had a busy period with two local riders travelling to Lake Bassenthwaite for the third round of the Cycling Time Trials Rudy Project Series.
In the over 40s category, Paul Lamb of Harrogate Nova CC produced 35:12 to achieve fifth place.
Steve Smales of Boneshakers Trek gave everything to finish second overall 33:52. On the same day in the Otley 25 mile TT Nova’s Rob Senior broke the magic hour/25 mph barrier with 59:10.
Fastest local rider was Duncan Mullier with 55:52, Nigel Goscinski of Yorkshire Velo scored 57:02, with Tony Kent of Nova clocking 57:51 and Yorkshire Road Club’s Mike Shacklock of Yorkshire Road Club 58:18.
Nova’s Lady League Champion recorded her first open TT win in the ladies event with 1:05:21 in what were far from perfect conditions.
Boneshakers-Trek’s Steve Smales didn’t have long to wait for a chance to put Wednesday’s reversal behind him and he took it is superb style in the Hull Thursday 10 mile TT on Humberside. The conditions were difficult with a strong gusting wind, but Smales recorded the fastest time of the local riders by some margin with 20:19. Yorkshire Velo’s Nigel Goscinski recorded 21:32, while Duncan Mullier was unable to repeat his heroics of mid-week to record 22:15. Nova’s Tony Kent fought through the wind to a season’s best 22:26, with team-mate John Tiffany also improving with 26:08. Tim Evans competed in the NY Mountain Biking Orienteering League in Blanchland in the Northern Pennines. Tim was heading for a top three finish until a navigational error meant the loss of twenty minutes. He eventually came home in 11th place, 4th vet. Full results on www.harrogatenova.com, @harrogatenova.