West Buckland Cyclo-cross

There was a one-two for Mid Devon Cycling Club at round 4 of the South West Cyclo-cross series promoted by Taw Velo at West Buckland School.

Andy Parker won the main race ahead of team-mate Oscar Wiessler with Steve Davies, of Hargroves Cycles, third.

Dry weather meant the 1.6-mile course's tight corners, trees, gravel, grass banks, hills and jump boards threw up little resistance to the fast pace of the field of 79 senior riders. Organiser Darren Armstrong said:

"Without any seriously steep sections, we put in some hairpin corners on the long straights to try slowing them down. Natural tree obstacles did the best job of testing their technical skills"

Locals finishing in the top 20 were Southfork duo Steve Sage (10th) and Matt Locke (17th), with Mark Lees, of North Devon Wheelers-Southfork, 20th.

Lees's club-mate Martin Crocker hung on to 31st, ahead of Nathan Dadwell (48th) and Simon Harmer (52nd), of Taw Velo, and Braunton-based Ben Gody (59th).

[flickr_set id="72157649220774820" images_height="150" max_num_photos="8"]

Harry Birchill, riding for Certini, was first out of 22 youths and novices, finishing ahead of George Armstrong, from Taw Velo, and Oli Minto, of Plymouth CX.

Young Wheelers Sid Baldaro and Nathan Adams finished second and third respectively as they were unable to prevent Birchill's younger brother Freddie, of Pilgrim Flyers, winning the 15-strong under-12s race.

"Cyclo-cross has always been respected for the bike-handling skills required, with a reputation for distinguishing the summer road-racing talent. The sport is growing throughout the age groups. It is attracting more youngsters because any falls are likely to be only self-inflicted as there are no drafting advantages to riding in tight bunches"

Max Standen won the under-eight race, which attracted 14 riders, finishing ahead of Taw Velo trio Louis Garnsworthy, Joshua Kyle and Hannah Foster.