Somers blasts into A4 after a long winter. Cycleways cup A4 report.

Thanks to Eric Davis

Sunday the 8th saw the rescheduled running of the Cycleways cup by Navan Road club. Team Orwell were well represented by a total of 8 riders ( Jonathan Coffey, Killian Doyle, Nick Appleby, Barry Greene, Ian Devlin, Eric Davis, Gary Somers and Martyn Holmes) The course was a revised and shortened 74.8k route with some tight turns and long leg burning drags that would ensure a tough race. 110 riders started in the bunch and soon after the start the pace was taken up by both Ian and Barry as they launched attacks off the front on the two main drags in an effort to blow the bunch apart. Unfortunately, the drags were neither long enough nor steep enough to get a break clear so all attackers were mopped up quickly. At this stage the peloton collectively decided that the race was going to finish in a bunch sprint.

The sprint for the finish - photo thanks to John Hammer

The pace during the middle section eased allowing for some chat and even a suggestion of a coffee stop by Barry G. On the second lap the main bunch was trimmed down to around 40 riders as the pace was pushed on our final pass up the inclines. All Orwell’s were present in the main bunch except for Killian who had to pull up due to ill health. As the bunch approached the final few kilometres the bunch shook with nerves as riders closed in on each other jostling for position and trying to avoid being stuck on the front. Some close calls and typical A4 remonstrations followed as we ramped up the pace and closed in on the final 500meters. Ian and Nick were well positioned with myself, Jonathan, Barry and Martyn boxed in on the left. Gary emulating a Manx missile began wheel surfing to get to the perfect position to launch a devastating sprint (clipped in on one side only) that saw him just pipped for first place. Ian and Nick finished strongly for 6th and 7th place meaning we had 3 Orwell’s in the top 8. All others finished just behind the points scorers in a messy and close finish

IVCA RACE – Summerhill

A good number of Scott-Orwell Wheelers made the trip to the IVCA race in Summerhill on Sunday the 8th of April. Glorious sunshine and a lack of wind was the reward.

Racing was fast for one of the early season openers but Orwell managed to get in the points in two races. Club President, Paul Tansey took 6th in race 2 and Patrick Malone 6th in Race 3.


Paul Tansey on the way to 6th - photo thanks to Brendan Culloton


photos and reports on: Photos and Stage Reports - Orwell Forum

This was the first year Scott Orwell Wheelers has entered teams in the Youth Tour of Scotland. Led by Team Managers Gen Sheridan and Gilllian Baker and with mechanic Terry Reilly a team of 4 girls and 4 boys headed off on the ferry on Friday in high spirits

Scott-Orwell Wheelers YTOS - Photo thanks to Gillian Baker

The Youth Tour of Scotland is a residential stage race, taking place in the beautiful Perthshire countryside. This four day event welcomes youth teams from across the UK and further afield to compete across four stages to gain the top position and sought after jerseys in general classification, points, king and queen of the mountains, team and Scottish rider competitions.

The event has a very high standard of racing with International teams and top UK racers taking part.

STAGE 1: Girls, 10:15: 5 laps (33km) Boys, 12:45: 9 laps (60km)

The morning of Stage 1 of the Scottish Cycling Youth Tour of Scotland dawned with bright skies and snow still sitting on the surrounding hills, a reminder of last weeks weather.

In the girls race Clara come down in the first corner and needed a replacement helmet but she was quickly up and back into the racing. Katie suffered with her back during the tough stage but battled on to the finish. Annie was first home in 43rd position. The girls finished day one in 20th place in the team competition

43. Annie Roche
58 Caoimhe May
76 Katie Reilly
77 Clara Rock

The boys racing was equally fast and furious with an extremely high level of racing. A group of 6 established an early break and with 7 laps to go had a gap of min 20 seconds with a hard working pack trying to make the catch. First in of the Scott Orwell Wheelers was Andrew Ryan in 57th place. In the team competition the boys were in 17th place.

57 Andrew Ryan
64 Ronan O'Connor
66 Conor Murphy
80 Dylan Baker

STAGE 2: Team Time Trial Girls: 1 lap (6.9km circuit) Boys: 1 lap (6.9km circuit)

Another beautiful, blue sky morning in Scotland for the start of the TTT.  The girls finished in 20th position and the boys in 17th. Spirits were high in th team and a great team spirit saw each team at the start line to support their team mates and hold each others jackets.

Happy Team Time Trial Teams

STAGE 3: Girls: 5 laps (34.5km) Boys: 9 laps (62km)

Sunday was a tough day of racing! After the TTT in the morning both teams were back in action in the afternoon. From the flag drop the pace was hot in the girls race and the bunch strung out quickly. Zoe Backstedt (Wales) and Eve Barrow (BC North West) worked together to form a breakaway and quickly gained a 36 second lead on a determined chasing bunch. The pair secured the QOMs and fought off the pursuing peloton for the remaining laps. In the Team competition the Scot-Orwell Wheelers girls moved up into 17th position. The finishing positions for the Scott-Orwell Girls were:

45. Caoimhe May
66. Annie Roche
75. Clara Rock
76. Katie O'Reilly

The General Classification for the girls team going into the final stage on Monday:
57. Caoimhe May
60. Annie Roche
76. Katie O'Reilly
77. Clara Rock

Annie & Caoimhe in action

The roads of St David’s were on fire as the boys race burned through the country lanes. It was an epic race with constant attacks attempting to go clear and the bunch reeling them back. This constant assault on the peloton led to riders being shelled early on.

Chief Commissaire Paul Mullen was thrilled with how the boys race went, “it was great to see the peloton being so active, a fantastic example of cat and mouse with breaks trying and the peloton responding.”

With just 3 laps to go, 5 riders eventually managed to get a gap and work together. Matthew Kingston (Lichfield CCC) won in an brilliant sprint to win the stage. Max Poole (BC Yorkshire) and Adam Michell (Sportcity Velo) following.  The Scott-Orwell boys finished as follows and are in 19th in the Team competition:

62. Andrew Ryan
63. Conor Murphy
71. Ronan O'Connor
77. Dylan Baker

The General Classification for the Boys race is now:
63. Andrew Ryan
65. Conor Murphy
69. Ronan O'Connor
78. Dylan Baker

Scott-Orwell Wheelers leads the way!

STAGE 4: Girls: 10 laps (25.5km), Boys: 16 laps (41km)

10 laps of the Kermesse was what was in store for the girls and 16 laps for the boys on the final day of racing at the Youth Tour of Scotland with it’s short, narrow circuit. The steep hill, averaging 11% served as an early selection for the peloton but all the leaders stayed up front marking each other. The pace was quick, with the first lap being within seconds of the lap record.

Spectators enjoyed a thrilling race from start to finish. All riders put in an incredible effort as they were cheered up the hill and worked to close gaps on the descents.

Winning the girls race in spectacular fashion was Eluned King (Wales), Imani Pereira James (SC South West) second and the third spot on the podium was taken by Sophie Lewis (BC Eastern).

The honour of the Peter Clarke award was given to Clara Rock (Scott Orwell Wheelers) who showed brilliant resolve and determination, completing the race despite falling off the pace early on.

49. Annie Roche
59. Caoimhe May
75. Katie Reilly
76. Clara Rock

57. Caoimhe May
58. Annie Roche
75. Katie Reilly
76. Clara Rock

Team Competition: 20th

The final stage of the the boys race in the Youth Tour of Scotland promised to be eventful and it did not disappoint. The boys set an aggressive pace from the second the flag dropped and several crashes ensued. The lead bunch battered round the course, bunny hopping speed bumps and taking corners at a pace testing their bike handling skills.

The boys dig deep in Scotland

The stage was won by Willian Corkill (RL360 Isle of Man), second was Ben Bright and Daniel Barnes (Lichfield CCC) third. Wales took the Team stage win with Scott-Orwell Wheelers boys finishing in 17th.

53. Ronan O'Connor
56. Conor Murphy
58. Andrew Ryan
72. Dylan Baker

59. Andrew Ryan
60. Conor Murphy
64. Ronan O'Connor
73. Dylan Baker

Congratulations to all the riders and a very special word of thanks to the Team Management who traveled to Scotland with the boys and girls - Gen Sheridan, Gillian Baker and Terry Reilly, without whom we would never have been able to send teams to this fantastic event.

Event summary thanks to Scottish Cycling. Scottish Cycling Event Report