Six Sudbury cyclists had a memorable day in the Eastern Counties Association Championship with professional Alex Dowsett.
The Maldon-born Grand Tour rider for team Movistar made a surprise appearance at Six Mile Bottom, near Newmarket, to use the event to set a qualifying time for the National Time Trial Championships, which has been won in the past by Sir Bradley Wiggins.
Much earlier in the afternoon, three Sudbury riders broke the 21-year-old 10 mile TT team record.
Fastest and first off, Rob Davies was followed home by Jody Downs and Damon Day to beat the existing record set by Scott Jones, Mark Jay and Graham White by 54 seconds.
Almost 50 minutes later, James Rush bettered Downs’ time by seven seconds, thus increasing the margin to one minute and one second over the previous best to set another new record time of 1.04.09 with Davies and Day.
A large group gathered to watch Dowsett commence his ride and setting off a minute in front of him was Sudbury’s 80-year-old Bob Bush.
Dowsett did not disappoint as news spread he had smashed the British record in a time of 17 minutes and 20 seconds.
That time beat the previous best by Michael Hutchinson by 25 seconds and improved his chances of clinching a Tour de France spot with team Movistar, which starts in Yorkshire on Saturday, July 7.
Having finished competing, Dowsett posed for photos with a host of the Sudbury riders, including Bush, who achieved a very creditable finish, as did Dave Crisp.
Meanwhile, the club TT was won by Matt Shotbolt, on the Brent Eleigh course by Simon Daw and James Rush.