Popular spring classic, the Sandie Radford Memorial Road Race returned this weekend to attract a quality field of 48 riders, including past winner Matt Downie (TAAP Cervelo) and Sotonia rising star, Red Walters.
Sotonia fielded a big team of eight riders keen to make their mark on the 45 mile ‘sporting’ course around Nomansland in the New forest.
The action got off to a quick start with club riders James Peckham and Brook Elgie stringing the bunch out and after half a lap, a dozen riders had a 25 second gap on the bunch in a biting cold tailwind on Roger Penny Way. By the end of lap 1, the race was back together but Red was already on the attack in a two man break with Lee Rutland (Bike Jockey). The two forged on, forcing others to chase as a dozen again rode clear of the bunch in pursuit.
By lap three, the lead group, including Red, James Peckham, Tom Budden, Phil Godfrey and Brook Elgie was back together. The winning move came on the final lap as James got a gap and Red quickly bridged to him. With Half a lap to go they had forced a lead of over a minute from the chasing break – any attempt nullified with strong Sotonia teamwork by Tom, Brook and Phil chasing down any attempts to pursue the leaders.
As the road pitched up for the steep final climb of Pipers Wait, Red pulled clear and he crossed the line alone, James taking a fine second place in only his first race of the year and well ahead of the pursuing break. Tom Temple (Primera Team Jobs) rounding out the podium, after pipping Matt Downie in the final dash for the line.
Red: “Just after the bell, James got a gap, I bridged over, we stuck our heads down and the gap grew. Basically E3 Harelbeke!”
So a fantastic and well deserved 1-2 for Sotonia, with Phil, Tom and Brook finishing 11, 12 and 13th after brilliant support work. Our other riders all finished in the pack not far behind – Phil Wilks (23rd), Tim Cooke (25th), and Nick Austin (31st).
Our thanks to Glenn Longland, TLI Cycling league, sponsor Gary Allan, all the marshals, time keepers and helpers for another fine event.
1. Red Walters – Sotonia
2. James Peckham – Sotonia
3. Tom Temple – Primera-Teamjobs
4. Matthew Downie – Taap Cervelo
5. Ian Taylor – Leicester Forest CC
6. Lee Rutland – Bike Jockey CC
7. Oscar Hutchings – VC Equipe-Flix
8. Matthew Norris – Mud Sweat n Gears CC
9. George Smith – Tri-UK
10. Max Moyles – Primera Teamjobs
11 Phil Godfrey – Sotonia CC
12 Tom Budden – Sotonia CC
13 Brook Elgie – Sotonia CC
14 James Horton – VC St Raphael
15 Rowan Horner – VC St Raphael
16 Zak Snell – UK-Biking/Bournemouth Cycleworks
17 Steve Dring – Team Echelon
18 Roland Tilley – Weber Creative Interiors / Bournemouth Cycleworks
19 Grzegorz Gacek – Nowotarski Klub Kolarski
20 Jason Gault Primera-TeamJobs Race Team
Race photos courtesy of Jez Hart: https://photos.app.goo.gl/YKxRxl1KupiRrkH93