Joe, Jake and I were in the 2/3 race, David, Tom and Adrian in the 4ths. Our race started fast. Riders at the front were constantly trying to break off and time and again the bunch stretched. I kept near the middle and warmed up. I felt good despite the stiffness from helping shovel the new Alconbury circuit the previous night. Two riders broke away. More tried to follow and I even had a go, but each time they/we were brought back in. And none tried harder to bridge than Jake, but tonight he was a marked man. One of the pair up front was a Rhino and the rest of the team were covering every move Jake made. St Ives, Greenwheel and Welland Valley all had decent numbers and their riders were trying too, but most of the work was being done by Jake. Joe and I each had little digs off the front, but they made little impact.
Just before twenty minutes, the 4th cats were in sight. Jake anticipated the inevitable confusion from when we would catch and launched another attack, but again he was dragged back. After that the pace eased to a more social tempo with Rhino controlling the front. Having caught the 4ths we were now in danger of being caught by them – after the race Adrian said Rowland had been warning them to hold back!
Of course Rhino couldn’t control it forever and the attacks resumed as riders sought to hook up with the pair up front. St Ives’ Lee was the only one who had managed this, but he’d not been able to stay with them. With four laps to go I moved to near the front and sat third in wheel. I picked my moment then attacked. No response from the bunch. Half a lap and Johnny and another rider joined me. We started working together. We completed our first lap, but the bunch wound us in our second. Second claim Wayne, riding for Greenwheel attacked as soon as I was back I n the bunch, but he lasted for less time than my group had. I looked around for Jake only to learn he’d punctured. Then things wound up for the sprint. It was fast and sketchy, I lost my position near the front and found somewhere safer on the outside for the race to he line. I think Joe and I were just outside the top twenty, but it had been a good race.