The Knowle at Edge Hill enjoys a well-deserved reputation in cycling circles as a tough climb due to its length and severity, approaching 16% at its steepest point. And so it was the scene for Banbury Star Cyclists’ Club Wednesday time trial with competitors riding two laps of a 7.5 mile course, each time riding up the hill. The route also took them down the 15% hill on the B4100 at Warmington to provide a much-needed, albeit brief, rest where speeds of 45mph are possible.
Although many of the club’s racers were resting as part of their preparation for other races, seventeen riders took part in the time trial and enjoyed cool conditions which helped with their times.
Will Davey rode his first time trial with the Stars last week and enjoyed it so much he returned once more. Time trial riders set off at one minute intervals and his fast time of last week meant he started at the back end of the field but it wasn’t long before he caught his minute man and completed the first lap in an incredible 18m11s, almost 1.5 minutes faster than Team Cherwell rider Dan Peabody.
Competition amongst the women riders was as strong as ever with Banbury Star member Naomi de Pennington also enjoying a fast ride, a combination of her improved fitness in conjunction with a new time trial bike as her first lap stopped the clock at 21m02s, ahead of Team Bottrill rider Denise Shepherd by a healthy lead of nearly 2 minutes.
The second lap demonstrates who is capable of managing their energy levels to at least maintain the same pace, Will Davey was judging his ride to perfection with an even faster time, finishing the 15 miles in a new course record of 36m19s so breaking the previous set by local rider Jon Simpkins in 2017 and averaging almost 25mph in the process which is no mean feat given the hilly nature of the course. Roger Foster was the first Star rider to finish with a personal best time of 41m44s. Not to be outdone, Naomi also broke her own women’s course record with her second lap matching the time of her first, to set a time of 42m04s.
1. Will Davey 36m19s (new course record)
2. Dan Pebody 39m39s
3. Darren Alexander 40m37s
1. Naomi de Pennington 42m04s (new course record)
2. Denise Shepherd 45m30s
3. Ila Pearson 51m32s
Next Wednesday’s time trial is a return to the 20k course, details will be posted on Monday.