News: 2017 Woolly Mamil Winter Series Review

The organisation of the Woolly Mamil Winter Series at Stourport Sports Club look back at the racing this winter

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News: 2017 Woolly Mamil Winter Series Review

The organisation of the Woolly Mamil Winter Series at Stourport Sports Club look back at the racing this winter
​Wow, some series that turned out to be. The biggest fields of riders we have seen and some of the most entertaining racing we’ve witnessed.

Riders come from all over to compete in this series, some after early points (BC ranking points), some wanting to test their racing form against their forthcoming seasons rivals and some, if our interpretation of your feedback is correct, just because they enjoy it. All valid reasons we think.

This year, along with many from local Midlands clubs, we had riders from Scotland, Newcastle, Devon, Wales, Manchester and Hampshire come to race. Round 3 saw the biggest number of registered riders at 208. What can we say? Thank you.

The standard of riding – technically, tactically and physiologically – has got progressively better every year. You might expect it from the E/1/2/3s but the youth race shows the time and effort these youngsters put in to their training and often rewards those who dare to attack and animate the race. Without question the standard of the women’s and 4th Cat is top notch and the speeds have gone up too.

By way of example, Olly Hacker of Birmingham University CC went from winning the 4th Cat race in round 3 straight through to winning the E/1/2/3 the following week. Like Leicester City Football club. Only better. But with much less money involved. Perhaps the moral of the story is to spend more time contemplating life, the universe and everything whilst studying Philosophy, Religion and Ethics. Well done Olly.

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The E/1/2/3 race gets 40 odd on average but it’s the 4th Cat race where we’d like to do more. The race gets fully subscribed on-line some weeks before the day, the reserve list gets more than fully populated and then we get entry on the line requests. We hate turning people who want to race away but we are, rightly, limited by the British Cycling risk assessment for the circuit.

What can we do for you guys? Another Cat 4 only race? Suggestions on a postcard please.

The Ludlow Brewery Racing Team get a special mention. Some classy rides from those guys this year, showing themselves at the front of the race and always doing it with a smile. They also brought us some beer. You’ll get a mention in these reports if you bring us free stuff too. Especially beer.

Parent points were awarded on an informal basis. There we some good ‘work togethers’ and loads of ‘get on a wheel’s but this year showed an increase on ‘move ups’. Aside from a bit of minor arm waving and a few well aimed wheel bag kicks, it was all good-natured stuff.

Putting a series of races on four weeks on the bounce in a British winter brings its challenges although once again we managed to get all the races going. In the past, we’ve had some delayed starts and a shortened course while the corners thawed out but we managed to avoid that this year with some preventative pre-planned maintenance – yes, salt and a couple of stiff brooms.

The weather mostly behaved itself, round 3 provided some nice sunny conditions, round 4 was a bit Ukrainian and rounds 1 and 2 have been frozen out of our collective memories.

So, Brass Monkey awards to the Commissaires, Dave, Kieran and Mike Jackson. Our thanks for your unobtrusive, low key but effective organisation. Also Simon ‘the Clock’ Fielding and the irrepressible internet sensation that is Ron ‘The Mon’ Ansell. Thanks lads. ‘Dr Rob’ Jackson, our medicine man, is also worthy of a mentioned in dispatches. He patched up a few this year and is a very reassuring presence.

We also need to thank Dave ‘Lord’ Starkey and Deb, Lou and Helen for manning the signing on and making it so slick. A big cheers and ta to anybody who helped us with gear checking or had a red flag thrust in to their hand when they were least expecting it when we were pressed.

Also thanks to our hosts Stourport Sport Club including Fran and Big Dave behind the bar. Our biggest thanks go to you, the riders. We really appreciate you supporting our events, doing so with a smile and bearing with us when we bollocks something up. If you keep showing up, we’ll keep putting then on, deal?

Stay safe and have great seasons

Cheers – Rich, John, Craig and Barry



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