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HWCC Mixed Team- Emma Wood
This year’s Silverstone 9-up Team Time Trial was one of the most exciting and enjoyable events on the calendar! I raced in a mixed team with: Dena Ford, Sarah Pope, Jane Hunt, Juliet Milward, Ed Furness, Sam Hucks, Graham Armit and Toby Ingham. We worked hard for a fortnight before the event, training in on the Longwick 11 mile course. For me, those were some of the best training sessions with HWCC. At first, we struggled to stay together and keep the pace high but before long, each person had picked their favourite wheel to cling on to and we were riding quicker all the time.
On the day, Graham’s experience and focus on the team kept us organised and made sure spirits were high. Sam did an exemplary lead-out, fulfilling perfectly his role to keep everyone calm and together as we left the pit lane and started the three laps of Silverstone race track. Toby and Ed fought hard into strong headwinds, keeping the pace as high as possible. Jane worked strongly on her turns too and used techniques she had practiced in training to bridge onto the back of the group without creating any gaps. Thanks also to Juliet and Sarah who helped increase our pace gradually, without surging, as we ticked off the laps and to Dena and her inner athlete, who managed to ride powerfully despite illness. With all of this together, our team stayed strong with every rider holding a great position that was seldom disturbed as we weaved through the sharp corners. I sprinted for the line and sat up, crossing it next to five others in the team who stopped the clock in 26.16 – a strong time created by consistent form and the sacrifices made by our three other riders.
It wasn’t just the smooth tarmac on the course, or the gentle buzz of teams in the garages as they warmed up, pinned numbers and talked tactics that made the event so good. It was also that feeling of having a team of friends willing to work hard for each other to achieve something for all of us at the expense of individual recognition. I will certainly miss our evening drills around Longwick.
HWCC Performance Team - Ollie Hucks
Friday 10th June was the day of the eagerly awaited Silverstone 9-up team time trial. I competed Last year and it was one of the most enjoyable events of the year so I was really looking forward to this one. The mens ‘performance’ team had the aim of winning the club it's first podium finish in this event.
Our team consisted of Rob Walker,Ollie Blagden,Andy Davies, Stephen Morrell, Lee Goward, Steve Golla, Janes Walker, Myself and Brent Holmes who had taken the day off work especially to travel close to 3 hours to get to the event, commitment!
Before the event, we managed to get in two sessions on the clubs 11 mile time trial course, the emphasis of these sessions was keeping the train smooth, with no surging once onto the front and shorter turns than we think!
The weather on the day of the event was slightly overcast with next to no wind, with glimmers of sunlight at times. We managed to get in one warm up lap to check out the track and then it was onto the turbos for a structured warm up. A few minutes before the start time we rolled down to the start of the pit straight for a team picture and bike check.
The HWCC crowd assembled on the pit straight and one by one the teams set off in sight of their own team goals, ours was the podium! We set off at a quick pace and sustained this throughout, we finished with 8 riders after Andy Davies put in a big effort to pull back a few riders after the train split going around a corner, taking one for the team there, thanks Tall!
We kept pushing all the way round the 3 laps and averaged a very solid 29.2mph. We were happy with how the team performed, with a few minor slip ups with regard to keeping formation but we know that with more practice this would of been wiped out. We then found out we were sat in 2nd position with only a few teams still to go so were very optimistic about that podium position! Sadly two very well drilled semi professional teams set a time of within 35 seconds quicker than ours, resulting in us being pushed down to a very commendable 4th and only 2 seconds of that goal of a podium place!
We were obviously a bit gutted that we came so close to the podium but couldn’t quite make the step onto it but we have learnt a lot from this year and I have no doubt every single on of the 9 will come back stronger and with a point to prove next year!
Thank you and well done to the whole team and HWCC for making the event so successful and so enjoyable!
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