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The Masters of disaster!

If’s buts’ and maybe’s turned up at the BC National Masters this weekend and they came with would have, could have and should have, for company!!

The 2010 British Masters Track Championships was a frenetic period for the Planet X boys and a splattering of silver and bronze medals didn’t make up for the missing Golden shower.

Short Stop Roberts began the weekend in fine form qualifying as the fastest rider in the Sprint competition during the Friday morning session. Moving through the rounds with ease he quickly progressed to the final.

Up against local knowledge in the form of Cardiff CC rider “sheepskin McGee” he was caught in slightly the wrong place when the action began during the closing 250 meters and despite giving it all he had he had to settle for the bronze medal. “I should have got a better position”

Taking to the track on Saturday morning to defend his National Kilo title, Short Stop Roberts fired out of the blocks recording a time of 1min 10 seconds which was only good enough for Bronze. Not a bad collection for a man who could only just walk a couple of month ago following a BMX accident on Christmas day, breaking his hip.

The scratch races and Points races took place on the Saturday and Sunday evenings as Coops, Clayton, Crouch and The Avenger joined the action.

First up Steve Clayton came home in 4th and just missed the medals in the Category D scratch race. Charging late and from the back Steve missed the medals by less than half a wheel in the closest finish of the weekend. “If only I had sprinted sooner, I would have won it”

Next up Coops “the train” chugged round the velodrome with the C category riders. Starting steady the action was soon coming down the track fast as the race began to spilt. Caught in the wrong place and the break going away Coops put in a big effort to bridge across to the leaders to form a front group of 8. Just as he got across to the leaders, a group of 3 escaped, this left Coops recovering at the back of the second group of five.

The chase continued but the 3 stayed clear and train boy had to settle for 6th spot. “But I was still recovering from bridging when they went clear”

The final event of the night and the fastest event of the night was the A&B category riders combined 15km scratch race. Timed at 18mins and 45 seconds the pace was on from the start. Attack followed attack until 4 riders escaped the main field. Sensing the danger the Ginger Avenger went after them with two others. Crouchy, just failing to get onto the Avenger group as they went was left stranded in the main field with hopes of a medal gone.

With around 15 laps to go the leading group of 4 lapped the main field. This left the Avenger still half a lap down. The pace was lifted as the laps ticked down. Then with 4 laps to go the Avenger finally made the junction with the main field and the lap was gained.

Only 1km remained and the Avenger moved straight to the front of the race. We now had 7 riders who had gained a lap. As they came into the final sprint the pace was high and despite a late charge the Avenger had to settle for the Silver medal. “I could have got round, if I had gone earlier”

The points racing on the Sunday followed pretty much the same script as Clayton, Cooper and Crouch all missed out on the moves that decided the race. They all worked hard and rode well as the standard across the board in the UK Masters was raised again.

The return of National Champions and GB Squad riders James Taylor and James Notley shows the competitive nature of the sport. And the speed and endurance now required at this level.

Our very own Ginger Avenger did collect a second Silver medal on the Sunday night in the Points race closely followed by Short Stop Roberts in fourth. Satisfied with two silver and two bronze medals both the Avenger and Roberts now head to Manchester at the end of July for the European Masters looking for a Golden Shower.

Again Coops, Clayton and Crouch will be there to make up the numbers but don’t expect too much.

Maybe they all need to train harder and stop making excuses!

13 July 2010


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