Report:  Victor Berlemont Trophy

Isaac Mundy was the winner of the “Victor Berlemont Trophy on Sunday  – report and result from Graham Robins

RST Cycle Clothing & Trigon Bikes

Report:  Victor Berlemont Trophy

By Graham Robins | Sunday 27th August 

Isaac Mundy (PMR @Toachim House) was the winner of the “Longest National B Road race in the UK”! He was in the original break of twelve riders that formed up on the opening lap and despite a couple of changes this group took the race right down to the bell.

The latest running of the Victor Berlemont held on the twelve mile Woodcote/ Goring course north or Reading and on the South Oxfordshire border. The riders had to tackle the course nine times with the challenging Flint Hill tackled on each circuit. The 74 riders rolled away from the Woodcote HQ under clear blue skies with the ambient temperature set to climb throughout the race.

On the completion of the first full lap the group of eight which was swelled to twelve riders as they crossed the finish line and their lead was already up to 33secs over a chasing pack further group of twelve.

The lead group had now fully established their command of the race with the remainder of the bunch already beginning to split and small groups on the road forming.

The twelve leaders were Chris McNamara (Nunn-Sigma Sport- London RT), Dillon Byme (VCUK Velochampion Racing), William Scott (Flamme Rouge CT), Ashley Cox (Nopinz), Joseph Clark (Cycling Sheffield Giant), Christopher Dredge (Spirit Tifosi RT), Isaac Mundy (PMR@Toachim House), Lee Frost VC Equip-Flix), Ben Marks (Morvelo Basso RT), Alexander Richardson (Bike Channel Canyon), George Wood (Richardson Trek) Paul Elcock (GS Henley) and Michael Mottram (Morvelo Basso RT).

On the start of the fifth lap there were now three groups on the road. There were the leading twelve, a chase group of twelve @55secs, a loan rider @1min 40secs with the remainder of the peloton now over 2mins adrift.

With two laps remaining the lead group is down to ten riders, with another group of 13 now @2mins 40secs and the rest all strung out around the course.

… continued after advert


At the bell the lead group cross the line with a lead of over a minute as chasers try to close the gaps. At this point Richardson puts a strong effort to ease away from the leading bunch and despite this he gets pulled back as the race enter Goring at the bottom of flint Hill for the last time.

As the riders came into view of the finish line two had manage to get away these being Mundy and Wood, with Mundy having just enough to hold on by 1sec on the line. Ben Marks brought in the remainder of the front group despite losing one minute plus on that final lap.

Here is Isaac Mundy’s account (thanks to Chris Lovibond for the following)

“Last year, I just missed the vital break, but I chased hard to get back on, only to be dropped with a lap to go. Today wasn’t really any easier: I didn’t feel that good this morning–it’s the end of a long season and I’ve only just come back from Oudenaarde (Belgium) yesterday after riding a criterium there”.

“I wanted to be in a move so I could just tap round and not be in the bunch jumping after things. Because it was going to be a long hot day some people were hesitant to try, so I thought if you just get on with it a bit, sometimes it can come off”.

“There was no big attacks, but near the finish line, a gap opened and we just leant on it a bit. Although we weren’t confident this break could work, it was not until the sixth lap that we saw anyone from the rest of the field, when George Wood and Rhys Howells joined us”.

“Then, the last time along the road towards Goring, George attacked on a little rise, I went with him and we opened a big gap. I wasn’t confident I could beat George, but when it came to the sprint, I think he may have been tired from that chase onto our leading group, and I won it”.

Second placed George Wood said that he missed the original break and was in a chasing group which, at around half distance, seemed to have run out of steam. He formed a partnership with his friend and former team mate Rhys Howells (Team Wiggins) and they successfully attacked this group and working together they caught the leading break within half a lap, joining them on Flint Hill on the sixth lap. Howells ultimately took the fourth place.

Wood seems an irrepressible character: a bad training accident early in 2016 ruined last year’s season, but the experience seems to have had a beneficial and maturing effect on George, who has come back this year to a very successful season with nine outright victories before this near miss. While many of the riders said (with perceptible relief) that the Victor Berlemont had been their last race of the season, George rode again the next day and won at Hog Hill. His season, and enthusiasm, continues into October, demonstrating the enviable resilience of a twenty-one year old.

Wood and Mundy are different physical types, but they have one striking thing in common: they have both raced successfully in Belgium this year, Mundy scoring one outright victory, and Wood two wins, aside from various other minor placings for both.

Third placed Ben Marks (Morvelo Basso RT) had been in the winning break from the beginning. He was suffering on the last lap, but still found enough left to win the sprint for third place, just beating Rhys Howells. He has moved up from ninth place in last year’s event.

Back at the HQ the organiser, Patrick Kavanagh, was keen to point out that his race, at 109 miles, is the longest National B race in the calendar (and it should be remembered that this distance includes nine ascents of Flint Hill which climbs up the scarp slope of the Chiltern Ridge with a ten percent gradient).

But Patrick’s main point was that the race’s existence was dependent on the sixty-three people who had turned out voluntarily to help. It is these anonymous but essential individuals who make road racing a viable proposition in today’s difficult circumstances. Special mention should be made here of the Pedal Club which again provided many of these helpers.

The Master of Ceremonies at the prize presentation was Doug Collins (creator of the winter series in the 90’s at Hillingdon), whose enthusiasm has been responsible for the resurrection of this classic event. This year Doug brought along the winner of the 1955 event, Terry O’Brien, to present the victor’s prize.

Terry’s own victory was in the colours of the original promoting club, the Southern Velo; seeing him this Sunday, it seemed hard to believe that some one old enough to win races sixty two years ago could still be in such good condition.


1. Isaac Mundy PMR Toachim House 5hrs 9mins
2. George Wood Richardson Trek @1secs
3. Ben Marks Morvelo Basso RT @1min 16secs
4. Rhys Howells Team Wiggins @st
5. Joseph Clark Cycling Sheffield Giant
6. Alexander Richardson BIKE Channel Canyon
7. Lee Frost VC Equip-Flix
8. Ashley Cox Nopinz
9. Dillon Byrne VCUK Racing
10. Michael Mottram Morvelo Basso
11. Chris McNamara, Nunn Sigma Sport
12. Luke Ryan Richardsons Trek RT
13. Dylan Thomas, VC Meudon
14. Lawrence Carpenter, Catford CC Banks
15. Jake hales, Spirit Tifoso
16. Paul Elcock, GS Henley
17. Callum Ferguson, Catford CC Banks
18. Andrew Turner, VC Equipe
19. Jonthan Fowles, Chronomaster
20. Tom Fitzpatrick
21. Fraser Carr, Vision
22. Mark Baines, Spirit tifosi
23. Dante Carpenter, Storck
24. Stephen Orbie, Atom
25. Liam Walsh, Vc St Raphael
26. Oliver Maxwell, Richardsons Trek
27. Matt Clark, Canyon UK
28. Matthew Clements, Catford CC Banks
29. Douglas Coleman, Spirit Tifosi
30. Joe Harris, Maxxis
31. Timothy Allen, Vision
32. Oliver hayward, Rhino
33. Charlie Passfield, Spirit Tifosi



Send your results as well as club, team & event news here


Other Results on VeloUK (including reports containing results)

Other News on VeloUK

Tags: , ,