A FULL field of 120 riders contested Rugby RRC’s ten-mile time trial in baking conditions on Saturday – just a week before the National 25-mile Championships – and Mike Vaughan Cycles of Kenilworth had four riders competing, including current course record holder Matt Clinton with 19:25.
Also lining up for the Kenilworth bike shop would be Jack O’Neill and Mark Powell, both aiming to lower their personal bests on the A45 course. Current Midlands Women’s TT Series leader Liz Powell rounded off the team.
Liz set a new PB as she set a superbly fast time of 22:15 (27mph), winning the women’s category by 58 seconds and taking 33rd overall in the event.
However, things did not go so well for Mark as a mechanical on course cost him some time, although he still managed 23:38 (25.4mph) to take 62nd overall.
A rare Open TT appearance from O’Neill saw him missing his start time by a handful of seconds. Forced to wait until the next available slot, he unfortunately received a 15-minute penalty, obscuring his new PB of 20:38 (29mph), which would have placed him sixth overall.
Vying for the win, Clinton was the first rider to crack 19 minutes, taking 35 seconds off the existing course record to clock 18:50 (31.9mph), just ten seconds short of his PB.
It would be hard to beat this time on this tough course but, less than ten minutes later, Drag2Zero’s Matt Bottrill – probably the best time trialist in the country at present – took another 25 seconds off Clinton’s time to finish in 18:25 (32.6mph).
With good results all round, the Mike Vaughan Cycles team finished second in the team standings, behind Drag2Zero who placed first, third and fifth overall.
This good form stands the riders in good stead as Liz rides the Women’s National 25-mile Championships on Saturday in Staffordshire, while Clinton and O’Neill will be lining up in the men’s event in Cumbria on Sunday.