Jody Downs took first place from last season’s winner Jonathan Weatherley to claim his first Cycle Club Sudbury Club Championship victory.
Held in glorious conditions on the 10-mile Lavenham course last Thursday, it was always going to be a close-run event with a host of riders heading into the event in top form.
One of the pre-event favourites, Darren Rule, was not able to take the start after sustaining injuries from a fall during a criterium race only days beforehand.
But Downs beat last year’s champion Jonathan Weatherley by a mere four seconds for a time of 22 minutes 50 seconds.
Downs has recorded some great rides during the year and his improvement from last season has been nothing short of sensational.
Third quickest on the night was Rob Davies with 23.08, and, considering he missed most of last season through injury, he is another rider who is finding his best form again.
There were 25 club riders taking part and many were hampered by slow-moving farm vehicles during their rides, including Weatherley, who felt he lost precious seconds during his effort.
Weatherley was also pipped into second place in the veterans’ category by winner Davies, with Downs claiming the bronze position.
The handicap category also had a new name to go on the trophy with relative newcomer Ian Millard getting the top spot with an excellent ride on the night of 27.01 with Damon Day and Graham Buckles taking the silver and bronze positions.
Young Patrick King, taking part in his first-ever TT, found himself the winner of the junior section with an excellent 28.47.
In contrast, one of the club’s founding members — Harold Raymond, nearly 60 years older than King — made a rare appearance in the event to commemorate his first ever TT exactly 60 years to the day.
He was sadly plagued with mechanical problems and was disappointed with his 35.47 time, but it was great to see him return to the TT scene all the same.
Barbara Law took the ladies’ trophy as she continues to improve after a nasty fall during an earlier event this year.
On the Open TT scene, both Day and Rush took part in 25-mile events recently with Day riding the Diss course and Rush the Bungay course, but bizarrely both set the exact same times of one hour and three seconds for their respective rides.