Lance races in front of sell out Derby Arena Crowd!

On Saturday I raced at Derby Arena in the Youth A Support races for the Women’s and Men’s National Omnium finals. It was an amazing opportunity to race in Thanet RC colours in front of a sell-out Derby Arena crowd and our races (as well as the men’s and women’s) were even live streamed on You Tube!

We travelled up Friday night, mum and I and stayed overnight at the Holiday Inn down the road. I have ridden at Derby Velodrome before when I helped mum coach Madison to the LVRC riders with Dad last year so the track being on the second floor wasn’t new to me but after signing on at 8:30am, gear checking and then warming up it was clear that today’s racing would be a little different to usual youth races. I shared my warm up pen with Alistair Rutherford in the next pen was Harvey McNaughton, 3 pens down was Tom Rotherham (with Matt Rotherham as his trackside aide) and as I warmed up Laura Kenny CBE walked past me pushing her baby Albert in a buggy to warm up at the end of the row.

I was in Youth A group 1 certainly a tough group with Joshua Giddings (The MI Racing Academy), Thomas Lord (Eastlands Velo), Robert Donaldson (Mossley CRT) and Adam Mitchell (Sportcity Velo) being among the fastest riders in our group. I was pleased (thanks to my Dad) to be able to ride a Corima disc and Planet X 80mm deep section front which certainly didn’t look out of place amongst the riders in my races or the adult races! We got a track warm up with 40+ riders allowed on track to warm up. My events were a 20 lap Scratch, 25 lap Tempo race, Elimination race and 40 lap points race spread throughout the day from when racing started at 11am until my last race of the day which started at 6:20pm so managing my food, drinking and warming up sufficiently for races was a challenge.

First race was the scratch and our average speed (on a restricted gear of 49 x 15 (6.93m or 88ins)) was 31.6mph I was pleased to finish in the bunch in 17th. The Tempo race was my first experience of riding this race format basically it’s 25 laps for us (5 are neutralised where the pack ride together) then the first rider across the line each lap gets a point and a group of riders rode off the front including Tom, Robert, Jack, Tom Pughe-Morgan and Joshua and they drove the group hard, hoovering the first across the line points and by the end of the race they had lapped over 11 riders including me. I finished 16th in my first Tempo race.

Each race start was gridded so if you are further down the standings you start further down the track either lined up on the top rail or with a holder on the black line. In the Elimination being towards the back isn’t a great place to start but my goal for the race was to ensure I wasn’t first out and despite getting pretty tired by this point after taking part in some really hard racing I dug deep and stayed in for 4 eliminations, disappointing but hoped an early exit might help in the points, it did mean I’d cooled down on the rollers ahead of the ladies Elimination race in order to watch Laura Kenny CBE compete in the race, the noise of the crowd was amazing just like at six-day. I really enjoyed watching her ride and her move through a gap “to get out of the box” in that race was just a master class! Mum and I were cheering from track centre!

Points race was the last event of the day and I knew riders would be gunning to try and string it out to either prevent riders gaining a lap or attacking to gain a lap or sprint points. I know some of you even watched this one on You tube Live stream (Dad was and screaming at the screen so Leo told me!) I almost went on the break with Emile Alexander (Lichfield CC) but knew Tom Lord was on my wheel and if he came with us we’d get caught so I swung up and then regretted maybe not digging deep to get away as Emile (thanks to the crowd supporting him) managed to get 10 points in 2 sprints and jump himself up the standings in the final race. I managed to ensure I finished with the second group thankfully not getting lapped.

Overall I think I finished about 19th which I was disappointed with but the experience of riding at such an amazing event in such an atmosphere is something I am really glad I have been lucky enough to participate in and hope that maybe I can do it again next year. I am a first year U16 so many of the riders are already 15 even 16 and so racing this year is about learning from each race and my positives from yesterday are having experienced the atmosphere and experienced a Tempo race and learnt a bit more about tactics of racing omnium events.

Next Saturday is the 2nd Icebreaker race over in Newport and all these are gearing up towards the National Omnium races which I am hoping to ride in April/May.

Thanks to Mum for all her support at these events and mainly for being my taxi service to get me there! I really couldn’t do these races without the support of all my family! Thanks 😊

Report by Lance Childs

Posted by Andy Mccall

Sent from Outlook


Lance at Track RSR 3 at Lee Valley Velodrome

Monday of half term was the 3rd track RSR at Lee Valley, another great opportunity to learn new skills (like riding lumps and bumps on track on my TT extension bars, little scary but really perfected steering with my hips) and develop other skills (like doing the longest lap, so track standing on the boards but rather than being on the straights trying to push our limits to track-stand in the banking!)

For this RSR we had to take our road bikes as well as track bikes and set these up on our turbo trainers we had to bring along and the first exercise of the day was we had to video our position on the road bike on the turbo which we later on in the classroom session used to evaluate our riding position and bike set up which was really interesting and I have changed my saddle height and am experimenting with stems and saddles to try and get the bike set up and effectively as possible.

A favourite of John Scripps and Rob Sharman (and step in coach Iain Cook) was up next, the wheels out, wheels in challenge where we have to un-bolt front and rear wheels from the frame, lay them down on the floor and then replace everything as soon as possible. It’s great practice and I am certainly getting quicker and more confident changing wheels, cogs, even had a go at changing a chainring the other day too!

On track from 10am we did some warm up drills including taking a lap on the bunch before we had to change our bars for our TT extensions and then we did a few sessions getting used to using the TT extensions. That included lumps and bumps which on TT bars certainly felt different but after a few laps we were carving up and down the track as we would on normal dropped handlebars. We then did some Team pursuit drills which felt really quick and lead on really nicely from Sunday’s cluster session where I’d practised a 1km TT (The distance I’ll have to do in the National Omnium qualifiers in April and May). I learnt a lot about how to handle the bike in the TT position.

Quick change back to dropped bars and then we had some “Longest lap” race practice which means track standing the bike on the track, when the coaches knew we could do it well we had to challenge ourselves to push further and further into the banking which was trickier but I really enjoyed trying to push myself to do my best.

The classroom session was based on bike set up, as a pre session challenge we had to bring along a photo of a bike rider whose position on the bike was in our opinion good and I’d chosen (along with many others) Bradley Wiggins in the hour and then we looked at our own position videos and critiqued our positions and our coaches gave us tips to improve our position. That was a really useful session and I hope to use those tips to improve my position ready for the road season and even for TT’s. A core and fundamentals workout was next followed by the final block was a group turbo workout which really got us sweating.

I am really proud to be representing Thanet RC as the only rider riding at this track RSR level and I really feel it has improved my track riding and bike mechanics on the track bike especially. It’s a great day but a long day spreading from 8:30am to 5:30pm and I have made many new friends and learnt so much.

Report by Lance Childs

Posted by Andy Mccall

Sent from Outlook

The sad loss of Frank Randell

Dear All,

It is with great sadness that I have to inform you that Frank Randell passed away last night. Frank was one of the club’s founding members, a legendary racer, who will always hold some of the club’s place to place records. He was a precious friend to so many of the club’s members and dearly loved by his extensive family. Funeral details will be posted later.

Posted by Andy Mccall

Sent from Outlook

Charlie gains 3rd Cat road licence

Great start to the season for TRC Race team junior Charlie Burgess continued this weekend with 5th at the Lee Valley road circuit to follow up on his 2nd place at Cyclopark a couple of weeks ago to gain enough points for his 3rd Cat licence, great reward for some hard winter training. Other TRC race team riders have also been in race action in 2018 Alex Ashman 8th and Tom Lowther 8th and 12th in recent races.

Post by colin Robinson

TRC Social Night: Tuesday 6 Feb 7.30-9.30: Bell Meadow Recreation Ground, St Nicholas-at-Wade

TRC Social Night: Tuesday 6 Feb 7.30-9.30: Bell Meadow Recreation Ground, St Nicholas-at-Wade

A classic night of low-fidelity, retro fun with The Lew Maxted Cycling Slide Show

Lew raced with club during the 70s, winning numerous events from hill climbs to 12-hours whilst breaking many club records. A keen tourer and pro race spectator, Lew also entertained club members with his slide shows. Highlights include Mercxx, Poulidor, Pingeon at the TdeF; the 1971 World Champs at Gap, iconic cols like the Izoard and Galibier, as well as club runs and TTs.

Posted by Andy McCall

Lance at Icebreaker 1 at Newport Velodrome

My mum and I drove to Newport on Friday evening ready for the Newport Velodrome Icebreaker 1 race. I felt nervous as well as excited, I knew the racing would be tough, this was my first track race as an U16, on U16 gearing and up against riders many of whom are 2nd year U16 and those that aren’t are on the ODA already on knocking on the door!

Our hotel in Newport was evidently the hotel of choice because the hotel dining room at breakfast was full of other riders and their parents. We gear checked, signed on and started warming up, chatting with riders that I have made friends with at either these races last year or at the track RSR’s. Track centre really is like a big family everyone seems to know most people. It is always daunting being the only rider from Thanet RC at an event especially as on the track often clubs race as a team even though commissaires discourage it!

First event was the 16 lap Scratch heat, the pace was strong, I’d chosen not to race with my Garmin on as for big races I don’t like the distraction but it felt faster than any other race I’d competed in. I dug in and despite another rider who’d been lapped trying to catch back on the group rather than staying out of the way and in doing so blocked my line. I pushed hard in the final lap and finished in the group but missed the top 12 positions in order to make the Scratch Finals.

Second event was the 32 lap Points heat, I had hoped/planned to try and make a break early to go for the first sprint but so it seemed did many of the other riders and as the pace built I dropped off the back of the pack and got lapped (I’d never been lapped in a points race before) I tried hard even accelerating to try and unlap myself but just couldn’t manage it.

Third and final event for me was the Devil my goal (after a day of learning just how tough U16 track racing could be) was simply not to be first out in the Devil and I am pleased to say I achieved that goal and stood track centre at the end cheering on Tom Lord and Innes Harvey who came 1st and 2nd respectively.

I have learnt a lot from racing this weekend and hope to improve on my performances in the races at the Icebreaker 2 and 3 at Newport in February and March as well as racing at Derby in February in the support races for the Men’s & Women’s National Omnium. I was disappointed with my performances but I now have an idea of just where I need to be and look forward to working with my coach to get stronger and faster throughout the season.

Report by Lance Childs

Posted by Andy McCall

Sent from Outlook

Thanet RC Weekend Race Round-up

A busy weekend for Thanet RC’s riders

Thanet Road Club’s youth riders endured a busy weekend, with the first road race of 2018 and the last cyclocross event of the 2017/18 season on the same weekend.

Eight riders made the trip to the Redbridge Cycling Centre in East London on Saturday, a £5m London 2012 legacy facility including the infamous Hog Hill, which averages 8% over 300m with a maximum 10.5% near the summit.

The LVYCC Youth Races, hosted by Lee Valley Youth Cycling Club, attracted a very good entry across all age groups, despite awful weather conditions with the temperature at four degrees and continuos heavy rain throughout. Many riders failed to finish, suffering from the cold or from punctures caused by flints washed on to the course.

Best placed Thanet rider was Emily Heasman who finished fifth in her first U16 Girls race. She found it difficult riding in the bunch because of the spray coming off other riders’ wheels, so Emily attacked off the front of a very good group but was chased down and stayed with the group for a fine finish. George Pittock used similar tactics, winning a bunch sprint in the second group for an excellent ninth place in the U16 Boys.

The heavy rain cleared overnight and in time for the final round of the East Kent Cyclocross League, hosted by VC Deal at Betteshanger Country Park on Sunday, but ground conditions were very wet and the already technical course was even more challenging.

Emily Heasman again came out on top, second in the U16 Girls race behind Charlotte McGreevy of Liv AWOL who won every round of the series and recently placed eighth at the National Trophy Series. George Pittock was unlucky to crash on the final lap, losing third place and a podium place to finish fifth in the U16 Boys race.

In the senior races Thanet RC had 2 competitors on a course that was becoming very muddy. Firstly Nicola Goodban in 13th in a competitive women’s race and Shawn Manning 9th in the Vets Mens 40+.

Head Coach Colin Robinson said “This was a great turnout and some impressive results from all of our riders. The weather conditions on Saturday were probably the worst I have ever seen for a road race, and then to turn out and do it all again on Sunday shows real commitment. Chapeau to all of our riders!”

Thanet RC results:

LVYCC Youth Races, Saturday 20 January

U16 Boys – 9th George Pittock, 14th Lance Childs, 24th Jack Hill

U16 Girls – 5th Emily Heasman, 12th Catherine Morrell

U14 Girls – 6th Freya Cook

U12 Boys – 8th Lughaidh Cook, 9th Max Robinson

East Kent Cyclocross League, Sunday 21 January

U16 Boys – 5th George Pittock, 9th Jack Hill

U16 Girls – 2nd Emily Heasman

U14 Boys – 7th Charlie Hart

U14 Girls – 3rd Freya Cook, 4th Tallulah Butcher

U12 Boys – 7th Lughaidh Cook, 10th Max Robinson, 14th Benjamin Hutton, 15th Luke Hart, 20th Thorsten Cook

Vet Men – 9th Shawn Manning

Women -12th Nicola Goodban

Post by Colin Robinson

(Photo – Nicola Goodban)