Cycling Smith sisters do their club proud

EllIE Smith, Matlock Cyclung Club
EllIE Smith, Matlock Cyclung Club

The British Schools Cycling Association (BSCA) National Mountain Bike Championships took place on Saturday in mild, dry conditions at Dartford, Kent.

Matlock Cycling Club’s Smith sisters travelled down to contest the under 11s and under 9s events. Older sister Ellie took the U11s Girls’ Silver medal. Ellie rode superbly but was unable to close the gap that Maddie Wadsworth of Oxford had built up early on.

Wadsworth was clearly tiring and Smith was closing in all the time, but ran out of laps as Wadsworth crossed the line first to take the Gold medal.

Ellie’s younger sister Libby, competing in her first mountain bike race, finished in a creditable fifth place in the U9s Girls’ race, as she continues to get better and better at all the various cycling disciplines she is competing in. In other news, Lee Shunburne, Peter Colledge and Dom Wibberley took part in Good Friday’s City RC’s (Hull) Open ten-mile time-trial, renowned for being one of the fastest courses in the country.

150 of the UK’s best time-triallists were in the field, as the course proves one of the most popular around, with many riders travelling hundreds of miles to take part.

Shunburne was the fastest Matlock rider to finish, in a time of 20 minutes and 35 seconds. Colledge clocked a 20:40 while Wibberley recorded a 21:17. All three riders were outside of their personal best times, mainly down to the very early start times the trio had meaning they were riding in near freezing conditions.

The event was won by the hugely impressive Jeff Jones of Drag2Zero Race Team who became the third fastest rider in history on a ten-mile course finishing in 18 minutes and 9 seconds, with only Bradley Wiggins and Michael Hutchinson ever going faster.

Meanwhile, in-form Patrick Gould was victorious in both of Matlock Cycling Club’s evening time-trials this week, with comprehensive wins on both the five-mile Ashford, and the 7.4-mile Short Hilly courses.

The Ashford five-mile event was very close as Chris Green pushed Gould all the way. Gould finished the course in 11 minutes and 18 seconds, some 19 seconds slower than the previous week due to the conditions. Green was only six seconds off Gould’s pace as he edged out Peter Colledge by a further four seconds into third spot.

Mike Blair rode the course for the first time on his standard road bike, recording an impressive 12 minutes and 45 seconds to come fifth overall.

With many of the club’s riders taking part in various open competitions on Good Friday, the field was short in terms of numbers for Thursday night’s 7.4-mile Short Hilly time-trial.

Patrick Gould took full advantage though as he dominated the field.

Gould clocked a winning time of 21 minutes exactly – averaging over 21mph on the tough course. Steve Heading was second, finishing in 21:42, while Mike Blair – again riding the course for the first time, finished an impressive third, with a time of 22 minutes and 36 seconds.