A race report from the second LWR 2017 crit/RR league crit race, hosted by Westerley CC as part of their Spring Crits programme. Report from Hannah Nicklin (who also took the photos). Full results including non-LWR members are on the BC event page, and league standings will be up ASAP on the crit/rr results page. View a Twitter Moment of the tweets from the day here.

crit02-2017 (24 of 29)Saturday saw the second race in the LWR crit/RR league calendar, at Hillingdon in West London. The day was dry, and not too windy (though Hillingdon does always manage to collect wind from somewhere), and clouds that had greeted the men’s races earlier in the day began to clear in the afternoon, getting ready to bathe the women’s 3/4 crit in a little welcome Spring sunshine.

crit02-2017 (4 of 29)The event was hosted by Westerley CC, and a good EOL turn out boosted numbers to around 25 on the start line. As the commissaire asked how many were racing there for the first time, almost all the field raised their hands, which is a great sign for the hard work Westerley and LWR did to promote the race, as well as great work on the part of all those riders getting out there and giving it a go!

crit02-2017 (20 of 29)The course was being run in a clockwise direction, and many of those who weren’t new to the course, were new to that configuration of it, so the first few laps were cautious, as everyone got used to how it rode. Hillingdon is a reasonably flat course, with nothing much in the way of difficult corners, so it takes a lot to break the bunch up. The pack stayed together, for the most part, only occasionally shedding a rider or two on the corners and the short climb into the straight back to the clubhouse. Team Jadan Weldtite rider Georgia Bullard and a couple of other riders were often seen on the front, driving the pace, and forcing the bunch to work hard to stick together.

crit02-2017 (29 of 29)In the final laps, the pace ramped up even further, with 2 to go there was almost a break at the front, as the pack stretched out after the short drag out of the winding corner at the top of the course. However, the race culminated in a long bunch sprint, coming out of the final corner into the straight. Bullard, and CCL rider Mareike Suesse quickly broke away from the main group, sprinting hard in the last 100m to the line. Suesse just beat Bullard over the line for first place. The bunch followed behind, with Rapha CC’s Kitty Pemberton-Platt pipping Dulwich’s Emma Fudge for third place.

A full album of photos from the day are on Facebook (tag yourself, and feel free to use the images as you wish) Full results are on the BC event page, and updated league standings will go up on the Results page ASAP.

In the meantime, QUICK! Sign up to the fourth race in the series, the incredible Crystal Palace Crits 2/3/4, which opens for entries at 21:15 today, and will sell out very quickly. A more complex course than Hillingdon, and a thrilling atmosphere. You can’t beat it!


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