The anticipated wind may have tried to spoil the party but Otley CCs Open 10-mile TT held on the V212 course was a resounding success.
In recent years, although 120 riders are allowed in an event we’ve not had that many entering. Not so this year. Ably organised and publicised by Christine Bell and assistant Trevor Hatib with support from our Women’s Development Officer Liz Hills the event was oversubscribed. However, with some entries returned places were allotted to reserves, some of who were TT first timers, and fortunately all were able to ride due to some entrants not riding on the day.
The V212 uses the A168, the old A1, running parallel to the A1(M). Previously used also when it was the A1 and known colloquially as the Red Wall because of the infamous slight uphill drag heading north past the red brick wall around Allerton Park and Allerton Castle, it lived up to its reputation, made harder because of the wind. With much of the first 4.7 miles slightly downhill riders were helped on their way by a substantial cross tailwind, with the obvious consequence that riders suffered on the way back, particularly on the Red Wall section.
First away we’re the tandems, John and Julie Smithies (Cyclesense CC) on the first, with Ilkley CCs John and Katherine Rigby-Jones on the second. Unfortunately, it turned into a one horse race as the Smithies punctured close to the turn. Not usually carrying a spare, they were doing this time – there’s a lesson here – so we’re able to continue back by bike once changed, although it did require the use of some tools from a certain motorcyclist to effect the change. The Rigby-Jones pairing powered to a time of 21:57.
No such drama with the solos. All got away and returned to the finish timekeeper without mishap, although the wind didn’t abate making the drag back to the finish difficult. Claire Jessop summed it up in one word ‘horrible’ although it’s worth remembering that Claire had ridden the City RC Open 10 the day before too.
Once back at the HQ, Arkendale Community Hall, riders and helpers were treated to a warm drink and lots of cake, most of which had gone by the end of the day. Cyclists and cake, always a happy combination!
The event was won overall by Philip Graves of NOPINZ in 20:25, 2:09 slower than his third place ride the day before in the City RC (Hull) 10 on the V718, with Maria Mulleady (Team Swift) fastest woman with 25:47. Junior Toby Kitching was the fastest Otley rider, and 1st Junior Boy, in 23:44. Thank you to Shared Access Limited for sponsoring the fastest rider prize.
Other Otley rider times as follows.
Chris Yates 24:40 (1st Veteran Man 60-69)
James Cullen 24:57
Harry Hunt 25:16 (3rd Junior Boy)
Gary Purchon 26:14
Carl Sherratt 26:20
Helen Goldthorpe 26:52
Greg Jessop 27:02
Claire Jessop 28:22
Christine Thwaite 28:44 (1st Veteran Woman 60-69)
Rachel Crowther 29:51
Trevor Hatib 30:52
Teejay Jones 35:05
Julie Robson 37:05
Full results on the CTT website:
Christine has already had messages from several riders and comments have been made via social media about how good an event it was and everyone concerned endorses that. We’ll done to Christine and to Trevor on their superb organisation. And thank you to the timekeepers, everyone who helped on the day and of course to all those who rode. A fantastic day for all.
Thanks to Carolyn Nelson, who spent a lonely two hours opposite the Red Wall photographing the riders, and to Siobhan McNamara at the start for use of their photographs.