The day after Danielle Hanley snatched the Guernsey 10-mile time trial record from proven star Karina Bowie, Maddie Wilson overcame both those riders at L’Eree yesterday to seal her second road race victory of the young season.
Mike Serafin took outright honours yesterday, chalking up his first road win of the season, in a race featuring great depth for both genders.
Serafin was just one of many key protagonists at the first lap point – 7.8 miles in – of a near 20-strong Division One/Two bunch.
Near windless conditions thwarted the hopes of any meaningful breakaway. And a blockage from some moving cows shortly after the second Imperial Hill climb was the sole impediment to the brisk pace.
Overall, it was more a case of riders dropping from the back than escaping off the front.
A mechanical dropped Jack English from contention, yet nine riders were still in the hunt at lap five of six.
After a fast final lap, Serafin pinched the sprint in 1hr 52min. 56.3sec. for circa 47 miles as Sam Reed, James Roe and Marc Cox followed within the next half sec.
‘It was good, but it was a hard race,’ said Serafin of a race where Division Two riders Andy Gibson and Jack Reed surprised by making the top seven.
‘No wind makes it even harder, as you can’t really gain an advantage anywhere when you’re off the front by yourself.
‘I got off the front on the fourth lap for half a lap but once the group start working together, it just comes back quickly.’
Over four laps, a huge bunch sprint proved instrumental to deciding the Division Three pecking order.
Leon Ogier won the divisional honours but the women came in thick and fast, Wilson edging out Hanley and Bowie for that top spot.
Former triathlete Chantal Green took close fourth, and later arrived Island Games veteran Ann Bowditch, plus, on the other end of the scale, teenagers Hannah Brehaut and Kylie Vaudin.
A grinning Wilson backed colleague Hanley’s observation that women’s cycling has grown a lot in the last year.
As for the previous day’s 10-mile ‘TT’, both Hanley and Bowie profited from the same near-ideal conditions.
Bowie had improved her mark to 23-52.6 only the previous week and went another 10sec. faster this weekend, yet she didn’t even win.
Hanley stole her thunder with a 23-41.3 clocking – coming from a rider who started the season with a best just under 25min.
‘I never thought I’d beat “KB” to be completely honest, so to get a record as well is great,’ added Hanley.
‘This season, I reckon the record’s going to keep coming down, because it’s quite competitive. We’ve got Chantal and Maddie as well and they’re flying on the bike, so we’re all just pushing each other and I don’t think this is the last of the records you’re going to see.’
Marc Cox took Saturday’s overall honours with another PB of 20-19.1.