Dromara CC complete a clean sweep at Musgrave Park
The cyclocross season is still only getting warmed up but Dromara CC members have been smashing out the results and this weekend was no different. This weekend VC Glendale CC hosted the second round of the Ulster CycloCross series and with last minute change of venue from Falls park to Musgrave Park it was all hands on deck. The course was certainly challenging enough but mix that with a bit of wind and rain and the course was ready to test all the cyclocross fraternity.
The under 6 race was first off and is where you will find some of the young Dromara stars in training with Kellett, Broome and Hetherington battling it out – winner is based on best smile and clearly it was a draw. The Under 8 girls race would see Aoife Kellett but her tyre on the start line and show that a bit of mud doesnt scare her as she took off. It was a close race for the top spots on the podium and a bit of top quality bike handling would see Aoife take 2nd place.
In the under 10’s girls race it was Lexi Broome’s opportunity to show her skills in the mud and she did not disappoint. In a very competitive field of girls she would give it her all with the dash to the line taking 5th place and agonisingly close to a podium.
The under 10’s boy’s race would once again see the ever improving James Armstrong test out his bike handing skills on a slippery course. He was quick of the line and produced some very impressive and consistent lap times that would see him grace the podium once again with a third place.
The Dromara CC team had to wait for the Under 16’s boys race to see Ben Wilson and Fraser Harrower show some great bike handling and sheer determination to take on the longer course. Ben is just back from international duty for Ulster MTB team but that didnt stop him taking to the start line. Ben and Fraser would both produce excellent times with Ben placing 6th and the ever improving Fraser just missing out on the top 10 with an 11th place.
The MTB Support race is always tough when the ground gets mucky and today was no different but a rejuvenated Lisa Millar would glide through the mud and take the victory in the females event..is this comeback complete? In the mens Derek Minnis on his comeback showed that better never stops as he took a comfortable 9th place.
This would leave the B Race and A Race to cover and it was the A racers who would go first with Graham Smyth, Davy Broome, Barry Kellett and Richard Cowan ready to challenge. The rain had held off and a crack team from Dromara CC would head to the pits ready to clean bikes and work on the perfect bike change. This merry band would be one of the major reasons for the next details. Barry Kellett fresh from his second place last week would have to battle his old foe David Montgomery for the top spot. David make a small gap but with slick bike changes from the Dromara pit crew Barry would end up taking the lead with a lap to go. With his head down and the wind on his back he would take an epic victory at Musgrave Park. Behind Barry Davy Broome, Graham Smyth and Richard Cowan would swap places all through the race and the Dromara Pit Crew would be kept working right through the race. When the chequered flag had finished waving Davy Broome would take 20th, Richard Cowan 22nd and Graham 29th securing the team prize by a mere 1 point.
The racing may have been over for the A racers but that didn’t mean the work was finished as they made their way down to the pits area to get ready to payback the B racers that helped out. In the B race Jack Ferguson would make his first appearance on a cross bike with Neil Armstrong was back fresh from his victory and creating much debate who would lead the line. Coach Broome was in confident mode as he stood in the pits discussing his coaching tactics. When the race started it was Neil who would challenge for the top spots but behind him Jack Ferguson would use his first lap to get to the know the mud better….Im not sure falling off the bike was what Coach Broome meant by getting to know the mud. As the laps went by Jack would move closer and closer to the top positions as Neil held on to second but on the last lap Jack would take a clear lead and strike for home. With no one near him he could enjoy a great victory making Coach Broome debate his coaching rates. Behind it was very much a close race with a sprint for 2nd, 3rd and 4th as Neil would take a third place. The other Dromara CC members taking on the B course didnt disappoint with some epic performances as Adi Booth took 11th and the comback kid John McGuigan claiming 20th place. Mike barton and Robert Davison would trade places all race with Mike taking 36th and Robert 38th. Paul Mawhirt who took on the challenge of completing the race with the tactic of not pitting came in 48th with the ever improving Bryce Hetherington still able to take 57th place after a session in the pits before his race.
Many thanks must go out to VC Glendale and all the helpers who put on a fantastic course that had everything. The food at the end was top notch and will set the bar high for the rest of the season. Also many thanks to the Belgium Project for the photos. Next week is Lady Dixon park where we get to do this all again.