The third round of the Ards/North Down Inter Club League was a road race at Ballygowan promoted by Ards CC this evening. There was another great entry, with 45 riders listed on the start sheet. The weather was perfect, but unfortunately one short stretch of the circuit had received attention from the surface dressers this afternoon – apologies to anyone who punctured.
Following last week’s race, where the groups came together at half distance, the timekeepers decided to extend the gaps. The front group were given six and a half minutes on the middle group with a further two and half minutes back to scratch. This led to a fascinating race, with the spectators debating who could catch whom until the last couple of miles.
- After one lap, the middle group had gained 1:40 (out of 6:30) and scratch had gained 2:20 (out of 9 minutes), so it was looking good for the front group.
- After two laps (half distance), the middle group had gained 3:05 and scratch had gained 4:35, so it was very evenly balanced.
- With a lap to go, the front group still had 1:45 on the middle group and 2:10 on scratch. It was going to be very tight.
Stuart Millar (Ards CC, scratch) decided to split things up on the final climb. But three riders had also escaped from the front group on the final lap, so eight riders contested the sprint for the win, with a bigger group charging in a few seconds later. When the dust settled, Andrew Hedley (AHC Racing) had taken the win, from Nathan Keown (Dan Morrisey) and Stuart.
|1||Andrew Hedley||AHC Racing||1:08:20|
|2||Nathan Keown||Dan Morrissey||1:08:20|
|3||Stuart Millar||Ards CC||1:08:20||20|
|4||Marc Allen||AHC Racing||1:08:20|
|5||Neil McKenna||AHC Racing||1:08:20|
|6||Andy Allen||Ards CC||1:08:20||19|
|7||Stephen Dickson||Killinchy CC||1:08:20|
|8||Kieran McSherry||Clann Eireann||1:08:20|
|9||Luke Joyce||North Down CC||1:08:28||18|
|10||Stephen Irvine||Crossgar CC||1:08:28|
|11||Ben Healey||Ards CC||1:08:28||17|
|12||William Larmour||East Antrim CC||1:08:28|
|13||Michael Boyd||AHC Racing||1:08:28|
|14||Gavin Oakes||Crossgar CC||1:08:28|
|15||Joe Giles||AHC Racing||1:08:28|
|16||Jonathan Taylor||North Down CC||1:08:28||16|
|17||Glen Curry||North Down CC||1:08:28||15|
|18||Stephen Watty||North Down CC||1:08:28||14|
|19||Kieran McNamara||Ards CC||13|
|20||Jon McCready||North Down CC||12|
|21||Dean Bradley||Ards CC||11|
|22||Paul Kirk||North Down CC||10|
|23||Jessica Kerr||North Down CC||10|
|24||Robert McGarry||North Down CC||10|
|25||Kirk Sloan||North Down CC||10|
|26||Ross Blayney||North Down CC||1:13:30||10|
|27||Aaron Fegan||Ards CC||1:13:30||10|
|28||Stephen Cardy||North Down CC||10|
|29||Ian Milligan||Dromore CC|
|Stephen Green||North Down CC||10|
|Tom Henry||North Down CC||10|
|Simon Reardon||North Down CC||10|
|Gareth Boyle||North Down CC||10|
|Ian Carson||Ards CC||10|
|Barry Mitchell||Ards CC||10|
|Barry Greer||North Down CC||10|
|Pawel Cybulski||AHC Racing|
|James Alexander||McConvey Cycles|
|Glenn Kinning||Kinning Cycles|
In the ICL standings, Stuart took maximum points to extend his lead over Luke Joyce. But things are still very close, with everything to play for over the remaining three rounds. Here are the provisional standings – we struggled to place every rider tonight, so if you see any mistakes please let us know.
|1||Stuart Millar||Ards CC||20||18||20||58|
|5||Aaron Fegan||Ards CC||17||15||10||42|
|8||Ian Carson||Ards CC||14||10||10||34|
|9=||Robert Mc Garry||NDCC||10||10||10||30|
|14=||Andy Allen||Ards CC||10||19||29|
|14=||Ben Healey||Ards CC||12||17||29|
|16=||Kieran McNamara||Ards CC||13||13||26|
|18=||Barry Mitchell||Ards CC||14||10||24|
|22||Dean Bradley||Ards CC||10||11||21|
|23=||William Orr||Ards CC||10||10||20|
|28=||Colin Wilson||Ards CC||10||10|
|28=||Michael Rowan||Ards CC||10||10|
Thanks to everyone who helped with marshalling, time keeping and judging tonight. And thanks to the riders – it’s very encouraging to see big numbers.
June is looking busy. Next Tuesday is the rescheduled 10 mile time trial from earlier in the season, followed by the Scrabo hill climb on 13th, the Town Centre races on 21st, our second Trail Quest on 27th and the next round of the ICL on 28th. Looking forward to it!