Normal service resumed after the Christmas break with a much milder day, with the gloom being overcome by the enthusiasm of the 4th cat men and women. Lillian Choy of London Dynamo kicked things off leading the early laps but it was Judith Burne (GS Henley) who was the most aggressive and subsequently awarded the Look Mum No Hands! combative rider prize.
Lillian Choy led again at the bell but in a really close sprint Emily Bates (700cc) narrowly edged her out from Jessica Finney (Portsmouth NE) and Jan Scott (Eton Tri Club) who could not be split by the photo finish.
Emily Bates can look forward to hands on from Nicole Oh of Peloton Physio and Queen of the Mountains socks.
The 4th cat race was all action with Mark Aldred leading and riding with intent, leaving a trailing wake of riders hanging on. He continued attacking but the group wouldn’t form and the race ended in a sprint with Bob McGlue (High Wycombe CC) winning from James Ferguson (SD Racing) and Paul Brooks. Five riders shed their 4th cat skin this week Emily Bates (700cc), McGlue , Ferguson, Brooks and Joe Kirton (VC Norwich)all taking well deserved Ryders Eyewear glasses to match their new licences.
In the E123 race the wind played a part with the still conditions encouraging riders to push on, notably Chris Burn (TMG Horizon), Damien Clayton (Mono CC), James McCarthy (Twickenham CC) and Barnabas Purbrook (Nuun-Sigma Sport-London RT). With 8km to go two riders pressed clear, Ieuan Woods (Catford Banks CC) and Arlen Vartazarian (Regents Park Rouleurs), and although their lead hovered at around 10 seconds they persisted and with a few laps to go the bunch relinquished the chase, only to pick it up on the last lap – but too late! Woods took the win from Vartazarian, each winning their respective categories with series leader Tom Hargreaves ( Nuun-Sigma Sport-London RT) in third.
E/1/2 winning sprint and Bunch finish
Quick Vid of some of the racing from Saturdays Imperial Winter Series. $th cat, women, E/12, and 3rds. No music, no verbal, just the sound of the tyres.