Race Reports from Raleigh riders Kerfoot-Robson & Barnes


Race reports from Nick Barnes and Dylan Kerfoot-Robson riding one of Raleigh’s new cyclo-cross RX bikes in the recent National Trophy Milton Keynes round 

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Dylan writes… “I was feeling a bit under the weather but I knew I still had a good chance I just had to be careful not to go too far into the red to early in the race as I knew I wouldn’t recover.”


“So off the start, I deliberately took it a bit easier than normal but I knew I still needed to be in a good position. I was about 5th at the end of the start straight but after the first couple of corners and avoiding a crash, there was a group slipping away at the front of the race, so on one of the short steep climbs I just squeezed on a bit and all the way through the transition to put myself in that lead group.”

“Once I got there, things seemed to ease off as no one wanted to take up the front; it was kind of a track sprint with a lot of riders keeping their powder dry. I knew that I didn’t want to tow a group of about five around so I squeezed on and dropped a few riders until there were only three of us left”.


Dylan, left of picture, has a steady start

“We then shared the work load pretty equally for the next few laps, although once again this started to break down again about 2 or 3 laps from the finish. This allowed the 4th place rider to very nearly catch us, once I saw he was only a few seconds off our group, I put my head down and rode off the front with Jack. We then extended our lead all the way until the line.”

“Coming into the last lap, Jack was leading and was trying to put me under pressure by squeezing it on the steep ramps up, so I just had to remain calm and stay on his wheel. The RX Race was perfect for these steep climbs where the light weight meant it was a dream to cruise or sprint up each of the hills. That was very helpful during this race as there were lots of these sort of hills every lap so it helped save a lot of energy over the course of the 40 minutes.

“Also the geometry of the RX Race gave me lots of confidence to ride every corner quickly but safely and still have plenty of speed on the way out, meaning I didn’t have to accelerate like a mad man out of every corner, which again was essential today as if that would have been the case I would have been fighting for 4,5 or 6 place, not the win.

“Coming into the run up a set of stairs on the final lap, Jack I think knew I was going to beat him if it came down to a sprint so I think he was quite cunning in his dismounting. It left me with nowhere to go so I hit the only tree on the course which was extremely frustrating but that’s racing I suppose.”


“By the time I was up the stairs and back on the bike, Jack had 5 or 6 seconds on me and as there was only a couple of minutes racing left and the gap between me and him filled by a couple of slow back markers it was all he needed to ride away and take the win.”

“I was quite annoyed to see him 100 metres further down the finish straight with his hands in the air but I knew there wasn’t anything else I could have done and I just have to learn from this and move onto Bradford in two weeks.”
To view the Raleigh RX Race bike that Dylan is riding visit Raleigh’s Cyclocross page at Raleigh.co.uk


Nick Barnes National Trophy Race

For Raleigh / Zepnat U-23 rider, this year is one for stepping up in class and competing against stronger and more experienced riders. However, youth counts for a lot and Nick has already scored notable wins this season. Nick reflects on a mixed Milton Keynes National Trophy race:

“The course at Milton Keynes is good one in my opinion; it has plenty of elevation change, a bit of running and some rather tough flat sections. At the start of the race I tried to ride my own race as much as possible and not immediately go into the red. It paid off for the first 15 minutes and I established a good rhythm.”


“At about 20 minutes in I put in a dig to reach the back of the leading group and I managed to stay with them for a lap or so. Unfortunately one of the top riders had a stumble which held me up and it took a little more effort from me to regain contact. When we hit the major climb of the course the pace was too much for me and I dropped off the group.”

“I tried to push on but was slowly dropping back. However, I still had a goal to keep pushing forwards as Adam Martin (early leader of the U23 series) was behind me. I eventually caught a group and managed to stay with them for the last 3-4 laps of the race. In the last lap Lewis Craven decided to run a slippery corner and I chose to ride it, just managing to get beside him before the next corner so he couldn’t block me out. I opened enough of a gap to hold him until the finish, coming in fourth U23 and around 13th overall.”

“It was an ok race however there are bits I could have done better. Hopefully I can rectify these for the remaining trophy events and national championships.”

Nick competes on the Raleigh RX Comp cyclocross bike and is one of six cyclocross riders Raleigh is supporting in the 2013/14 season.


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