Convincing victory for Hitchens

WELL PLACED: Mens race winner Ben Hitchens sits just behind the leaders
WELL PLACED: Mens race winner Ben Hitchens sits just behind the leaders
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Newly-resurfaced roads in north Essex posed a few problems in Cycle Club Sudbury’s Summer road races on Sunday, but that apart both the men’s and women’s races passed off without incident.

“We had two really good races,” said organiser Darren Rule.

“The weather was kind, and we had no accidents, which was the main thing. A few riders got punctures, and some dropped out, but everyone was safe.”

Both races were run over four 13-mile laps of the Bulmer circuit, with Ben Hitchens (Pretorious Bikes) a comfortable winner of the men’s Regional B race (third and fourth Category riders) in two hours 11 minutes and 3.899seconds.

David Warwick (Orwell Velo) was second in 2:12:33.824 with Gary Freeman (Fast Test Racing Team) in 2:13:04.045 taking third place.

The women’s race, which included the Eastern Regional Championship race, was timed over the final three laps following technical problems timing the first lap, and produced a very close finish.

The winner was Sian Botteley (Starley Racing) in 2:08:53.255, with Chanel Mason (Army Cycling Race Team) second in 2:08:53.381 and Jennifer George (Drops Cycling Team) 2:08:53.528 third.

Of the 29 riders who started, four did not finish.

Mason took the Eastern Region medal, with Laura Cameron (Drops Cycling Team) second in 2:08:53.836 (fifth overall), and Gemma Melton (Pedal Power Cycles Ipswich) third in 2:08:56.867 (11th overall).

“We have had some good feedback from the riders, who thought both races were well organised, and that they felt safe,” said Rule. “We also had good rapport with the local farmers. We are right in the middle of harvest. We gave them advance warning, and they really helped by planning their work around our race, so there were no hold ups.”

This was the third year that CC Sudbury have hosted this event, and Rule says he is looking forward to organising again next year. “But I’ll have a bit of a rest first as I’ve had a few hectic weeks.”