Race Report for the EMEG, Nottinghamshire Round for 3+4 cat over 45 miles on the 4th August 2012, words by WLM RTs Tom Sutton.
A 13 mile circuit was used and 63 riders completed the 3.5 tough laps. The circuit had a 1.5 mile climb at the end of each lap which was expected to split the field apart. Despite being small splits over the first 2 laps there were still around 35 riders left in the bunch with the weaker riders being dropped. On the third climb a stronger pace was set with a further 10 riders being dropped.
A number of riders tried to get away before the final climb to get an advantage and by the bottom of the climb only Andrew Stuart of Nottingham Clarion CC remained ahead with a lead of around 15-20 seconds. In the last half a mile Leon Wright of Naked Bikes, Paul Cox of Team Pedal Power and Oliver Wilson of Birmingham University Cycling Club broke away to claim 2nd, 3rd and 4th place respectively narrowly behind Andrew Stuart. I had to settle for being at the back of a chasing group of 7 riders with everybody on the limit.
At this point the rider 2 in front of me let the wheel go allowing 4 riders to get a gap on 3 of us. Having broken away from the other 2 other riders I tried to close the gap before the short false flat to the finish knowing that if I caught them before the false flat I could gain a few more places in the sprint. Despite sprinting for the line and catching the group of 4 drastically on the short false flat to the finish I couldn’t quite catch them and finished 9th. This was definitely the hardest 3rd and 4th cat race I’ve ever ridden.