British best for Malvern Cycle Sport

DAVID CREBER: Riding the rock garden. Pictures: PETER CREBER.

DAVID CREBER: Riding the rock garden. Pictures: PETER CREBER.

First published in Sport

MALVERN Cycle Sport riders enjoyed success on the rocks at Cannock.

The British Mountain Bike Cross-country Series final round was on a treacherous course in Staffordshire with 19 Malvern riders recording a resounding six podium finishes.

Gareth Richards got the club off to a fine start by winning the fun race, despite being one of many to crash attempting a fast route on the new rock-garden section.

In the open event, Tom Harnden was 23rd before the competitive sport race saw James Dickens and Tom Creber improve on previous rounds, finishing 11th and 12th respectively.

The next day's racing began with the youth male event, which saw Ross Harnden manage 11th, closely followed by Stan Pritchard in 12th.

Nathan Rigby-Howard was 21st in a three-way sprint finish blanketed by only two seconds.

Juvenile male Louis Brooks rode the rock garden successfully to gain his best result this year with 10th.

Hattie Harnden finished third juvenile female only 20 seconds behind second spot.

In the junior male category, David Creber pushed keenly from the start to lead for the first lap but was slowly overhauled to finish second 28 seconds behind the leader.

It was nevertheless a superb result and his first national podium this year.

In 11th place, Josh Brooks had a fine race with consistent lap times giving a solid finish.

In confident form after her Great Britain selection for the world championships, Evie Richards executed the rock garden well for her first national level win as a junior.

A fast elite male race saw Malvern Olympian Liam Killeen chasing his first win since resuming racing after injury.

He circulated in a lead group of three with British champion Grant Ferguson and visiting international Martin Gujan.

On the last of six laps, Ferguson pulled away to finish five seconds clear of Killeen with Gujan a further 30 adrift.

In another last-lap battle, masters rider Tom Fowler closed in on the next rider to finish one second behind in third after 95 minutes of racing.

Ryan Milne endured a rock-garden crash and a broken seat to claim 26th place.

Mark Webb showed improving form to finish 27th in the veterans' race.

Greg Fitzpatrick neatly avoided a crashed rider on the rock garden on his way to 23rd in the grand veterans' section.

Malvern were again the best-represented club with a strong contingent of competitors and supporters helping produce fine results.

For more pictures, see this week's Malvern Gazette.

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