Report: Newton Longville Road Races

 Melissa Lowther and Jake Alderman winners at the Newton Longville Road Races on Sunday  – report from Chris Lovibond

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Report: Newton Longville Road Races
(report & pics from Chris Lovibond)

The National Women’s Grand Prix
(17 laps of 4.3 miles – 73.1 miles.)

A long shot break which almost worked gave excitement to this excellent ladies’ race.

However, it was the confident and powerful finish of Melissa Lowther (Team Breeze) that won the day from Joscelin Lowden (Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire) who had worked so hard in that break. Series leader Elizabeth Banks (Storey Racing) took third place, just three seconds down. This trio were 21 seconds clear of the bunch which was led in by Jennifer Holden (Fusion RT/Fierlan).

The significant break came with about six laps left. There had already been a few other forays off the front, but it was Lowden with Amy Roberts (Wiggle/High Five) who really opened up a gap, extending at one point to 1 minute 20 seconds. Surprisingly, Joscelin hadn’t set out to get away and said she had gone to the front simply to take an energy gel, but as she did so Amy Roberts came past her, she looked behind, saw a gap and decided to seize the day.

This partnership worked well enough until Lowden unintentionally dropped Roberts who was quickly reabsorbed by the peloton; undeterred she pushed on alone and at the start of the bell lap still had 26 seconds in hand. Chanel Mason and Lizzy Banks (both Storey Racing) managed to close this gap and it looked as though it would be them contesting the sprint, but out of the final corner a perfectly judged effort by Melissa Lowther, who seemed to come from nowhere, carried off the victory.

Melissa commented that she had judged it best to play a waiting game once she was aware that the partnership of the break had failed and this proved a shrewd decision. At twenty-one years of age she already has seven seasons behind her, including considerable international experience, and is becoming familiar with the top place on the podium, this being her second major victory in July alone. Her ambitions lie in international success, and has she just been selected for the GB team for the UEC Road Championships in Denmark: on current form a good result there seems likely.

Although Joscelin Lowden may be disappointed with second place, her show of stamina in hanging on at the finish after so many miles alone was truly impressive. Lizzy Banks said she had come to the race to defend her overall lead in the series, and she made a good job of doing just that.


1 Melissa Lowther Team Breeze
2 Joscelin Lowden Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire
3 Elizabeth Banks Storey Racing
4 Jennifer Holden Fusion RT Fierlan
5 Sian Botteley Cycle Team OnForm
6 Madeleine Gammons Team Vision Innovative Leisure
7 Elizabeth-Jane Harris Storey Racing
8 Emma Cockcroft Bianchi Dama UK
9 Julie Erskine Cycle Team OnForm
10 Lauren Murphy Liv Cycling Club – Epic Coachi…
11 Alicia Speake Cycle Team OnForm
12 Alice Sharpe NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli
13 Savannah Morgan Team 22
14 Amy Roberts Wiggle High5
15 Bethany Crumpton Storey Racing
16 Karla Boddy Team Corley Cycles
17 Gabriella Nordin SunSport Velo
18 Jessica Finney Portsmouth North End CC
19 Josie Knight
20 Charlotte Colclough Bianchi Dama UK
21 Stephanie Mottram NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli
22 Georgina Panchaud Bianchi Dama UK
23 Charmaine Porter Team Ford Ecoboost
24 Chanel Mason Storey Racing
25 Amy Hill Cycle Team OnForm
26 Melissa Brand Team Ford Ecoboost
27 Tamara Davenne Team Vision Innovative Leisure
28 Molly Patch Fusion RT Fierlan
29 Anna Henderson Cycle Team OnForm
30 Abigail Dentus Team Breeze
31 Gemma Sargent Cycle Team OnForm
32 Rebecca Johnson Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire
33 Monica Dew Storey Racing
34 Kelly Murphy Team Ford Ecoboost
35 Jennifer Powell Team Ford Ecoboost
36 Louise Scupham Team Jadan-Weldtite
37 Lucy Davies Arctic Tacx RT
38 Alice Staniford Team RGB Building Supplies
39 Fiona Turnbull Speedflex Race Team
40 Georgia Bullard Team Jadan-Weldtite
… continued after advert


Men’s National B Race (77.4 miles)

The Saint Piran team justified their long trip from Cornwall with first and second places.

Jake Alderman (Saint Piran) clearly had most left at the end and was far enough ahead of his rivals to be able to raise his arms in victory salute thirty yards from the line. His team mate, Matt Langworthy, who had helped to position him in the final leading group of six riders, took second place.

This race had been fought out over eighteen laps of a new 4.3 mile circuit based on Newton Longville. Although there are no big climbs, there are almost no flat sections and the seventy seven miles proved a tiring experience for most of the field.

Riders started testing the bunch even on the first lap, but what turned out to be the significant move came on the tenth lap when Paul McGrath (Verulam Really Moving) and Frazer Rounds (Team KTM) got clear and rode together alone for a couple of laps but were eventually joined by a dozen others. However, with six laps to go McGrath was again at the front with just one companion, but this time it was Antony Moye (Spirit Tifosi RT). With two laps left this pair were joined by Alderman and Langworthy with Charlie Passfield (Spirit Tifosi) and Sam Henning (Richardson Trek).

Coming up to the finish the group expected decisive action from Spirit Tifosi, but in the end it was the Saint Piran boys who dominated.

Matt Langworthy and Jake Alderman are still in the under 23 category, so are both showing great promise. Alderman says his favourite quote is: “I’m not here to take part, I’m here to take over.” A dangerous thing to say, but it certainly worked for him this time.

It’s worth sparing a thought for Paul McGrath who, at thirty eight, was the second oldest in the field. He started this season as a third cat. comeback rider. Although he may have looked a bit tired on the podium (see photo, right hand side) he had certainly done more work than anyone else and still managed third place. There’s more to come from this comeback!

With racing as good as it was in both these events, it’s easy to be taken up with the glamour of victory and to forget the work that has gone into creating the day. Wayne Thomas and his team have far exceeded the normal heavy work load necessary to put on a race at this level, particularly by working successfully at establishing good relations with the local residents. His view is that he is only prepared to put on races if he can do it to “the high standards that I wish to set”. There’s no doubt we all agree that a very high standard was duly achieved.


1 Jake Alderman Saint Piran
2 Matt Langworthy Saint Piran
3 Paul McGrath Verulam – reallymoving
4 Charlie Passfield Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
5 Samuel Henning Richardsons-Trek RT
6 Anthony Moye Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
7 Jake Hales Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
8 Oliver Maxwell Richardsons-Trek RT
9 William Scott Flamme Rouge Cycling Team
10 Josh Rock Finchley Racing Team
11 Matthew Webster Catford CC Equipe/Banks
12 Jack Waller Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
13 Laurence Kirby Catford CC Equipe/Banks
14 Matthew Exley Flamme Rouge Cycling Team
15 Frazier Carr Team Vision Innovative Leisure
16 Charlie Bratt St Neots CC
17 Edward Clemens Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
18 James Hedley-Smith Verulam –
19 Marcus Burnett Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
20 Michael Cripps Army Cycling Race Team (ACRT)
21 Andy Lyons Richardsons-Trek RT
22 Duncan Heywood Saint Piran
23 George Clark Catford CC Equipe/Banks
24 Cameron Woolsey Spirit Tifosi Racing Team
25 Oscar Hutchings VC Equipe – Flix
26 Fraser Rounds Team KTM
27 Ross Holland Bikechain – Ricci
28 Timothy Allen Team Vision Innovative Leisure
29 David Reece Saint Piran
30 Jamie Francis London Dynamo
31 Joshua Avery Team Vision Innovative Leisure
32 Neil Edwards
33 George Aldridge Army Cycling Union
34 Martin Galpin Icknield Road Club
35 Nawfal Demnati Wills Wheels Cycling Club



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