Report: 2012 Prissick Spring Shield 10th March – Round 2


Simon Baxter in winning form in the Mule Bar/Number 5 Coffee House Elite Race at the Middlesbrough Cycling Circuit last weekend. Report & results from Marcus Smith

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Events sponsored by: Highfield Kitchens of Great Ayton

Mule Bar/Number 5 Coffee House Elite Race
Simon Baxter (Herbal Life – Leisure Lakes threw down an early warning to local and national riders alike with a commanding victory in the ‘Mule Bar/Number 5 Coffee House’ Elite race, part of the Highfield Kitchens 2012 Prissick Spring Shield.

Alex Bottomley (Velo 29), the 2011 National Junior Road Race Bronze medalist rode with intelligence beyond his age to take second spot, with Yorkshire strong man Mark Perry (Dirt Wheels Cycles), arguably disappointed to take the final slot on the podium.

Will Haynes (Blackhawk Bikes) was absent from the carnage at the front, but fought in a chasing trio finishing 8th, leaving him a three point cushion in yellow over Baxter.

It was Field Marshal Haig who used the expression ‘Backs to the wall’ when he wrote his morale boosting communiqué during the Battle of the Lys, in April 1918. “Every position must be held to the last man; there must be no retirement. With our backs to the wall… each one of us must fight to the end”.

Hague would have been proud to have witnessed the ‘Mule Bar/Number 5 Coffee House’ Elite race on the Prissick arena, an hour long affray that was a battle to the end. However, it’s not just strength of muscle and strength of character that makes a champion. This may be good enough for the trenches, this may be good enough for the time trial scene, but on the battle field of Prissick, being as cool as a cucumber and as sly as a fox is just as much part of the racing cyclist’s arsenal. If this were not the case, then strong man Perry would surely have taken the spoils.

The conditions seemed reasonable: the air was warm and the clouds were light, but it was the wind that was to cause so much damage. The two main straights were beset with a rising stiff breeze cutting straight across the track, leaving scant room for precious shelter. It was these conditions that led to the ‘every-man-for-himself’ approach as the long hour of purgatory set in.

Perry showed his strength the moment the flag was dropped; forging the early break with a group of four for a few laps, before his companions wore weary of his strength and company. He then drove on alone, and drove on some more, and took the next two £10 primes together with the ‘Godley’s Bikes’ Sprint Points. The 40 man field was never much of a bunch, more a long weaving line, fracturing, closing and then re-fracturing again, the rapid stretching line of riders cracking down the torturous side-wind straights.

The weak were left little choice – grovel on a wheel in the gutter and survive, or lose the wheel and die. The strong valiantly pushed on; the weak were left to the vultures. The field split, there was a counter attack of nine, including Baxter and Bottomley and also Martin Hopkinson (Fietsen Tempo) – taking the move to the higher categories happily in his stride, but for perhaps 40 minutes, Perry’s show of steely determination held his pursuers at bay.

It was the tactical mastery of Baxter that brought the Perry show to an end. Biding his time, watching Thomas Timothy (Velo 29) take the second spot behind Perry in the ‘Godley’s Bikes’ Sprint, he then launched a huge attack, the only adversary with the legs and presence of mind to sense the danger being Bottomley, but Baxter was too strong for young Bottomley, and too strong for the now tiring Perry.

The Baxter attack swept up the flailing Perry and quickly put him to the sword. Perry was dispatched to the chasing seven, but in a testament to Perry’s strength and tenacity, he still had the legs to take off again to take the sprint for third from the speedy legs of Jack Rees (Velo 29). Bottomley was no match for the imperious Baxter, unable to attack him, nor join allegiance and it was Baxter’s race all the way to the line.

Round 3 sees Haynes hanging onto his yellow tunic from Baxter and strong man Perry taking the Red Sprints jersey from Timothy. Primes were supported be For Goodness Shakes ‘Nectar’ and Godley’s Bikes.

Godley’s Bikes (3rd/4th cat race)
Ed Watkins (unattached) pulled a tremendous bunch gallop victory out the bag in The Godley’s Bikes Stakes, for 3rd/4th category riders. A seventy man field rolled away 45 minutes earlier and despite the best efforts of the Ferryhill Wheelers (Mountain High) attack squad of Paul Stubbs and Ben Hetherington, the bunch remained pretty much intact that led to an exciting big sprint scrap for the podium places and fancy ‘Flowers by Edwina’ and Mule Bar energy pack. Primes were supported by For Goodness Shakes ‘Nectar’ energy fuel.

Podium faces (from left: Will Staveley, Ed Watkins, Matt Rossiter)


Watkins beat last week’s runner-up Matt Rossiter (Durham University) and the young Will Staveley (Ferryhill Wheelers – Mountain High). Rossiter, courtesy of his second spot in the previous round, starts Round 3 in yellow. Ed Garret (Durham University) takes over the Godley’s Sprints Red Jersey, having won all three hot spot sprints. Hetherington, not known for his sprinting prowess was cleverly on the attack before each prime, and picked up three second places putting him on seven points, just two behind Garret.

For Goodness Shakes Stakes (4th cat race)

The 4th category race for novice riders was not short on entertainment. Whilst the speed may not be as high and the attacks not as frequent as the higher category races, there’s always the greater potential for a spot of carnage on the tarmac.

It’s not easy riding shoulder to shoulder, wheel to wheel in the cross winds, the tight bends or when preparing for the sprint. Throw a few primes into the pot to get some variation in speed, and the recipe for testing bike handling skills is set. Craig Smith (Columba) kept out of trouble and unleashed a terrific sprint, to take victory and the ‘Flowers by Edwina’ ahead of Chris Constanti (Gosforth RC) and Dirt Wheels Cycles female racer Brit Tate.

Craig Smith (Columba) taking victory from Chris Constanti (Gosforth RC) and Brit Tate (Dirt Wheels Cycles)

Youth Racing
In the Youth A racing, Joe Mann (Derwentside CC) tops the overall leader board, holding off Matty Whorton (Hetton Hawks) by five points. Mann took top spot in both the time trial and the circuit race, taking the scalps of Nathan Veall (Clifton CC) in the test, and James Morgan (Hetton Hawks) in the criterium. Ben Honeysett (Stockton Wheelers), replete with new helmet, was back to the fray after his crash the previous round taking fifth in both the test and circuit race. Laura Kotch (Cleveland Wheelers) is in a class of her own leading the Girls under 16 category.

Jake Dobson (Newcastle Phoenix) was the best on the day in the Boys under 14s, winning the time trial and the circuit race and now leads the series by four points from Thomas Mein (MTS). Mein took the second place in both events. Richie Allen (Newcastle Phoenix) was fast enough for third in the test but suffered from an asthma attack and pulled out the circuit race. Joe Howard (Cleveland Wheelers) moves up to fourth overall standings with third in the circuit race.

Jess Watts (Tyneside Vagabonds) and Kirsty Boak (Tyneside Vagabonds) shared the spoils in the Girls under 14s. Watts was victorious in the time trial and Boak best in the circuit race. Megan Hopper (Cleveland Wheelers) sits in second overall, nine points behind Boak.

Aaron Preston (Cleveland Wheelers) also scored a double victory, putting him four points ahead of Toby Tanfield in the Boys under 12 GC. Tiny Tanfield managed only second in the test, which was surprising following his dominating victory the previous week. Joe Wilson (Stockton Wheelers) battled for third in both events, placing him third overall, three points behind Tanfield.

Youth C/D/E podium: Joe Wilson (Stockton Wheelers), Aaron Preston (Cleveland Wheelers) Toby Tanfield (Cleveland Wheelers)

Lucy Michells (Stockton Wheelers) beat Rachel James (Stockton Wheelers) in both time trial and circuit race in the Girls under 12, but James leads the GC due to her performance the previous week. Harry Morris (Hetton Hawks) took a double triumph in the Boys under 10, beating Zac Johnstone (Stockton Wheelers) both times. Johnstone leads the GC from Morris and Matti Egglestone (Beacon Wheelers).

Ava Oxley (Wakefield Tri) still tops the Girls under 10, taking victory in the time trial, but losing out to Roisin Lally (One Life Racing) in the circuit race. Daniel Holmes (Tyneside Vagabonds) again took a double victory in the Boys under 8, beating Patrick Kilcullen (Stockton Wheelers) and Samuel Holmes (Tyneside Vagabonds) in both events. Lititia Hay (Hetton Hawks) leads the Girls under 8, posting an impressive time in the time trial matching that of Holmes.

A final thank you to our wonderful sponsors:
Highfield Kitchens of Great Ayton
Flowers by Edwina – 424 Marton Road, Middlesbrough
Number 5 Coffee Shop
For Goodness Shakes ‘Nectar’ Energy Fuel
Arthur Thompson photography


1. Simon Baxter Herbalife-Leisure Lakes
2. Alex Bottomley Velo29-OTR-Vankru
3. Mark Perry Dirtwheels Cycles
4. Jack Rees Velo29-OTR-Vankru
5. Andrew Beattie Infinity Cycles Race Team
6. Christopher Mark Velo29-OTR-Vankru
7. James Anderson Blackhawk Bikes
8. William Haynes Blackhawk Bikes
9. Richard Meadows Velo29 Cycling Team
1 Martin Hopkinson Fietsen Tempo
11. Craig Anderson Blackhawk Bikes
12. Thomas Timothy Velo29-OTR-Vankru
13. Marcus Smith Blackhawk Bikes
14. Alan Nixon Blackhawk Bikes
15. Rob Carter Velo29 Cycling Team
William Brown Blackhawk Bikes
Andrew Cox
Simon Davison Blackhawk Bikes
Tom Harcourt Blackhawk Bikes
Ashley Marshall Aire Valley Racing Team
Andrew Miles Durham University Cycling Club
Daniel Plant Ferryhill Wheelers CC
Douglas Shaw
Neil Souter Private Member
Simon West Cyclesense
Rob Wheeler Blackhawk Bikes
Zack Whitehead Dirtwheels Cycles

1. Edward Watkiss ICycle
2. Matthew Rossiter Durham University Cycling Club
3. William Staveley Ferryhill Wheelers CC
4. Paul Bennett Team Hope Factory Racing
5. Stuart Neilson
6. Michael Sloanes Sunderland Clarion CC
7. Philip Turton Yorkshire RC
8. Master Ben Hetherington Ferryhill Wheelers CC
9. Christian Fewtrell
Paul Cottrell Sunderland Clarion CC
Martin Axon Velo29 Cycling Team
Racheal Bamford Dirtwheels Cycles
Delia Beddis
Andrew Brennan Unattached
Katharine Broadbent Durham University Cycling Club
Scot Bullivant Rock And Road Cycles
Richard Cleathero Yorkshire Velo
Chris Constanti Gosforth RC
Matty Cooper
Jake Cowen Border City Wheelers CC
Edmund Garrett Durham University Cycling Club
Ruari Grant Durham University Cycling Club
Alice Grieve Stockton Wheelers CC
Peter Hale GJS Racing Team
Michael Harcourt Blackhawk Bikes
Simon Hardie Durham University Cycling Club
Andrew Heath Fietsen Tempo
Neil Hendry Dirtwheels Cycles
Stephen Jarmuz Dirtwheels Cycles
Paul Kirby Cestria Cycles RT
Phil Mark Velo29 Cycling Team
Richard McClements Hartlepool CC
Carl Mustill Ferryhill Wheelers CC
Thomas Parkin RWD Brakes Factory Racing Team Finished
Douglas Rae Glasgow Whls Finished
Tony Rees Adept Precision Racing Team/
Michael Rennison Cleveland Wheelers CC
Ruairi Revell Dirtwheels Cycles
Jake Shackleford Durham University Cycling
Douglas Shaw
Philip Speight Adept Precision Racing Team/North
Lee Stenton Dirtwheels Cycles
Paul Stubbs Ferryhill Wheelers CC
Brit Tate Dirtwheels Cycles
Gary Taylor Ferryhill Wheelers CC
Adam Theaker
Iain Turnbull Ferryhill Wheelers CC
Peter Ward Velo Club Edinburgh

4th Cat
1. Craig Smith Colomba Cycle Club
2. Chris Constanti Gosforth RC
3 Brit Tate Dirtwheels Cycles
4. Chris Ranson
5. Adam Theaker
6. Paul Cottrell Sunderland Clarion CC
7. Philip Turton Yorkshire RC
8. David Ranson Infinity Cycles Race Team
9 Racheal Bamford Dirtwheels Cycles
10 Kyle Watts Tyneside Vagabonds CC
Richard Cleathero Yorkshire Velo
Tony Rees Adept Precision Racing Team/North East Healthcare Solutions


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