The B-side: a closer look at National B road racing
42-year-old Yanto Barker (Le Col) rolled back the years to win the 38th edition of the Jock Wadley Memorial road race on Sunday (13 March), the longest national road race of the year so far. The win capped a dominant performance from Barker and his teammate Alex Richardson, who crossed the line together, well over a minute ahead of their nearest challengers.
73 riders lined up for the start from the Paxman Academy, with the racing beginning as they reached the village of Layer de la Haye for 12 laps of the Abberton Reservoir circuit. The weather was overcast with a strong wind from the south making for a tough race.
During the second lap, five riders had formed a breakaway, which included eventual winner Barker, together with Sam Asker (Richardsons-Trek DAS), Jordan Peacock (Spirit Bontrager BSS Rotor), Matthew Clements (Kuwait Pro CT) and Matthew Lord (Hart Performance Coaching). Ole Bang-Andreasen (Le Col) later bridged across to make it a group of six.
Behind, the wind and intermittent cold rain showers was having an effect; as the laps passed the race splintered, much more so than in recent editions of the race. A crash in the peloton on the reservoir road after about 90 minutes of racing, involving about 20-30 riders, also served to whittle things down.
With around five laps to go, Alex Richardson was part of a counter-attack, accompanied by his Le Col teammate Richard Todd, our former journal contributors James Jenkins (Richardsons-Trek DAS) and Tom Portsmouth (Mini Discar Cycling Team), James Ashcroft (Nopinz Motip RT) and Jack Freeman (Meuden Pedal Heaven Le Col RT).
Once the gap between the leading group and the counter-attack was down to around 15-20 seconds, Richardson attacked, taking Portsmouth with him. they made contact with the leaders.
By the 10th lap, Barker and Richardson had distanced the other leaders, sharing the pace to build up a lead of over a minute by the time they reached the finished. Portsmouth, meanwhile, led home a group of five chasers to finish third.
Farley Barber (Spirit Bontrager BSS Rotor) remains at the top of The British Continental national road race rankings after the weekend’s races.
|3||Tom||Portsmouth||Mini Discar Cycling Team|
|5||Samuel||Asker||Richardsons Trek DAS|
|6||Jordon||Peacock||Spirit Bontrager BSS Rotor|
|7||Matthew||Lord||Hart Performance Coaching|
|8||James||Jenkins||Richardsons Trek DAS|
|9||Jack||Freeman||Meuden Pedal Heaven Le Col RT|
|10||Matthew||Clements||Kuwait Pro CT|
|11||Charles||Ager||Stolen Goat Race Team|
|12||Clay||Davies||Spirit Bontrager BSS Rotor|
|13||Chris||McNamara||Nunn-Sigmasports London RT|
|18||Zeb||Kyffin||Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling|
|19||Frazier||Carr||Spirit Bontrager BSS Rotor|
|21||Joe||Staunton||Whitelink/White Mountain CRT|
|23||Matthew||Houlberg||Meuden Pedal Heaven Le Col RT|
|25||Tim||Allen||Team LDN-Brother UK|
|26||Callum||Riley||Richardsons Trek DAS|
|31||Joseph||Smith||Tofauti Everyone Active|
|35||Oliver||Hurdle||Stolen Goat Race Team|