The Scottish winter made its presence known overnight with a blanket of frost making itself known across the course.
National Trophy winner Olivia Poole (Deeside Thistle) made sure not to hang about for the Under 14 Female race as the Scot led from the front on her way to victory.
Poole, who is also Scottish national champion, put time into her rivals on each of the four laps of the course, to claim the victory by 42 seconds from Peggy Knox (Verulam – reallymoving.com) in second, with Eva Gibson (4T+ Cyclopark).
The Under 14 Open race was undoubtedly race of the day, as it was the battle of the Scots with Rhuaridh Fulton (West Lothian Clarion) and Guy Rorke (Peebles CC) fighting out for the win.
The duo swapped the lead a few times with Fulton leading at the end of lap one, but the positions swapping on the second of four tours.
It was, however, the penultimate lap that made the difference with Fulton coming off at the “Slip and Slide” which allowed Rorke the opportunity to secure the victory, which he went on to do in the final lap. Crossing the line with his bike aloft of his head and celebrating a lá Pidcock.
The Scot said afterwards,
“I’m so stoked, it’s amazing to wear the jersey for an entire year. It’s such a good course, I just felt great today. It’s amazing because this year I’ve only had one National Trophy podium, to win the National Champs is just amazing.”
Fulton’s effort throughout were enough for the local rider to come home with the bronze.
Peggy Knox (ViCious Velo) was in imperious form in the Under 16 Female race as she doubled up her National Trophy success with the British title. Aelyn Davies (TORQ Performance) made a bright start and was briefly leading in the early stages of the race but managed her effort well to take the silver medal.
Freya Mowbray (Scotia Offroad RT) produced an excellent ride to take the bronze, and the bragging rights of the top Scot, with Melanie Rowe (Deeside Thistle) and Daisy Wilkinson (Scotia Offroad RT) in fifth and seventh place, respectively.
There was also delight for Scotia Offroad RT who took home the team prize.
A tense under-16 open race saw Milo Wills (GKR Racing) cling on to the national title after a late crash saw him lose 40 seconds. Wills was the quickest off the line, and clocked a blistering first lap to be 20 seconds up on the field. Jody Mills (Inspire Racing Adaston Scape) was chasing behind, but couldn’t get close to Wills. A gaining Noah White (Mid Shropshire Wheelers) overtook Mills to sit in the silver medal position in the third lap.
Despite a crash in the final lap, which saw his handlebars snap, Wills was able to compose himself and still finish 40 seconds ahead of White, who put in a valiant effort ahead of Mills in third.
Paul Oldham (Hope Tech Factory Racing) led from the off in the over-40 veteran open race, finishing 30 seconds ahead of a closing Lewis Craven (Wheelbase CabTech Castelli), while Adrian Lansley (Pedalon.co.uk) took the bronze after a fantastic ride.
Kate Eedy (Team Empella) also demonstrated her dominance in the over-40 veteran female race, leading from the first lap to take an incredible solo win. Helen Jackson (Kendal Cycle Club) crossed the line second to secure her place on the podium, while Jennifer Andrews (Cycle Club Ashwell) came home in the bronze medal position.
In the combined over-50 and 60 veteran female race, Alison Kinloch (Shibden Cycling Club) crossed the line first to take the title ahead of Reifen Racing’s Lucy Siddle, with the two working together throughout the race, and Kinloch just pinching the win in a sprint to the line. Helen Pattinson (Montezuma’s Race Team) finished third to round off the over-50 podium, while Nicola Davies (www.cyclocrossrider.com) took the over-60 title. Sally Reid (Magspeed Racing) and Elizabeth Clayton (RT23) claimed silver and bronze respectively after battling the cold conditions.
Scots too were on the podium in the 55-59 Veteran categories with Tracey Wilkinson Begg
(Vanelli-Project GO) and Alison Brown (Stirling BC) picking up silver and bronze.
A massive congratulations to the team at Falkirk Junior Bike Club for organising an excellent event, and to the commissaire team and army of volunteers for making a such a special weekend for Scottish Cyclocross possible.