Sunderland Clarion step into the breach to host CXNE cycling event

Paul Oldham. Pictures by Dan Cooke
Paul Oldham. Pictures by Dan Cooke
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Sunderland Clarion played host to CXNE round 11 on Sunday, following the cancellation of the flood-hit planned round in Cumbria.

Despite the move, the weather remained wet, with a muddy course for the racers at Herrington Country Park.

The event also helped raise funds for the Cumbria Community Foundation Flood Recovery Appeal.

The day’s main race saw Paul Oldham, of Hope Factory Racing, using his experience to his benefit to take the victory ahead of Nick Barnes (Hargrove Cycles RT), with Great Britain mountain biker Grant Ferguson (Pedal Heaven RT) coming in third, finishing a further 46 seconds later.

The riders were locked together in the early laps as they battled around the quagmire that several days rain had created under the shadow of Penshaw Monument.

The first Sunderland Clarion rider was Kris Adlington in 13th place.

The juniors and veterans, 40-49, raced together, with Ian Taylor (C and N Cycles) taking the victory ahead of Nottingham Clarion junior Callum Fernie in second, ahead of Blumilk’s Alan Nixon.

In the over 50s veterans race, Kenny Johnson (Scott Racing) took the honours, while the podium was rounded out by Stephen Gray (Derwentside CC) and Wayne Nicholson (York Cycleworks), who were over two minutes behind Johnson.

Sunderland Clarion’s Dave Jackson took 28th place.

The women’s race was won by comfortably by Beacon Wheelers’ Nicola Davies, finishing three minutes clear of second-placed Alison Kinloch (VC UK).

In the youth races, Derwentside CC’s Oliver Draffan won ahead of Hetton Hawks’ Adam Jarps and Daniel Dixon (Gosforth RC).

Hetton Hawks riders took the honours in the under 12s and under 10s, with victories for Benjamin Partridge and Nathaniel Henderson respectively.

Despite the conditions, the event was roundly praised by riders, with special praise to members of Sunderland Clarion who volunteered to organise the event, especially Paul Barrett who organised the event following the announcement of Beacon Wheelers’ events postponement.

Sunderland Council, especially David Purvis, did well to help get the event on at the last minute.