(The full results from all races are available here. There are also lots more photos and videos on the club’s official Facebook page here and on our gossip page here. And Martin Grimley’s report, and lots more pictures from the Belgian Project media squad here.)
Ards hosted the Ulster Mountain Bike cross country championships at Whitespots Country Park today. The numbers were down a bit compared to the Irish round we hosted back in April, but there was plenty of enthusiasm and talent present in all categories.
First up were the Under 8s on the smaller lap.
The Under 8s get under way.
Although one rider “did a Pogacar” at the first corner..
The under 8 boys podium – Elijah McClintock (Lisburn BMX) first, Oliver Gunderson (Killinchy CC) second (not present) and Logan McAreavey (Cuchalain CC) third
Top under 8 girl was Ciara McCool (Square Wheels)
The under 10s were next, taking on 5 laps of the shorter course
The under 10 boys charge into the first corner
The under 10 boys podium – Jake McKee (VC Glendale) first, William Sunderland (Lisburn BMX) second and Noah Kelly (Lisburn BMX) third
The under 10 girls podium – Lucy Baxter (Lisburn BMX) first, Lila Rosa McAuley (Lisburn BMX) second and Emily McClintock (Lisburn BMX) third.
The under 12s used a slightly bigger lap, with more climbing.
The U12 girls race into the first corner
The under 12 boys podium – Darragh Murphy (Rostrevor) first, Rory McCool (Square Wheels) second and Kealan Doherty (Foyle CC) third
The under 12 girls podium – Sophie Baxter (Lisburn BMX) first, Skye Spence (Shimna Wheelers) second and Carmen Buchowicz (Team Caldwell) third
It was great to see some of the early winners helping out at the later races..
The under 14 podium – Curtis McKee (Scott Bright Motor Group) first, Caleb McGreevy (Apollo CC) second and Adam Matt (Banbridge CC) taking the bronze.
Visitor Kartel Pruijn (on holiday from the Nederlands/Spain) actually crossed the line in third pace in the U14 race but wasn’t eligible for a medal.
The under 14 girls podium – Lacey Aiken-Johnson (North Down CC) first, Maeve McCool (Square Wheels) second and Elisa Sunderland (Lisburn BMX) third
Harry Hobbs (VC Glendale) won the under 16 race from Danny Copeland (Unattached Ulster)
And first under 16 girl was Aliyah Rafferty (Island Wheelers)
After lunch it was the turn of the Junior and Senior riders
The juniors and senior head into the first corner
Travis Harkniss (VC Glendale) was a dominant winner of the Junior race, but second placed Adam Ewart (Apollo CC) deserves a special mention for completing the last lap and a half on foot after his chain broke.
Sean O’Hara (Roe Valley) was first senior man (Apologies for the poor photo)
The Master30 riders head off
The M30 podium – Glen Kinning (Kinning Cycles CC) first, Sean McIntyre (Team Caldwell) second and Michael Gordan (Unattached Ulster) third
The Master 40 start. PJ Hynes (Cuchulainn CC) is already at the front and took first place.
The M40 podium – David O’Neill (Inspired Cycling) first, Paul Hamilton (Dromara CC) second and Yesten Smith (North Down CC) third. (PJ wasn’t eligible)
The master 50 class was the final race to start
The M50 podium – Kieran McKenna (Omagh Wheelers) first, Jason Henry (Inspired Cycling) second and David McKee (VC Glendale) third
First woman was Caroline Martinez (Chain Reaction Cycles)
- Chris White for organising the event, and to his merry band of helpers for marking it all out from first light on Saturday morning, and taking it down again afterwards..
- All those who helped out with sign on, marshalling and timing.
- Martin Grimley – MTB commissaire for all his help in advance and on the day.
- Northern Ireland Sports Medics (First Aid team).
- Ards and North Down Borough council for the use of the park.
- Dany Blondeel and the Belgian Project for PA, and overall support.
- Last Lap Cafe – food and snacks can solve any problem.
- All competitors and supporters from near and far – see you all at another Ards CC event soon!!
David McVeigh (Belgian Project media team).