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Hempton cyclo-cross course proves a winner for Norfolk riders

21:54 19 November 2014

Kieran Jarvis (Gt Yarmouth CC) on his way to his first cyclo-cross league win at Hempton. Photo: Fergus Muir.

Kieran Jarvis (Gt Yarmouth CC) on his way to his first cyclo-cross league win at Hempton. Photo: Fergus Muir.

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Local riders came to the fore on a technical and rain-swept Hempton cyclo-cross course where youth rider Kieran Jarvis scored his first-ever league victory.

Stephen James and Katie Scotter repeated their wins while Ian Newby, who scored some of his most famous senior victories at Hempton, returned to dominate the Veterans’ 40-49 race.

It was slippery, but still dry overhead in the former sandpit near Fakenham when Jarvis (Great Yarmouth CC) and Adam Colbert (Ipswich BC) fought out supremacy in the Youth race, with Colbert leading at first while Jarvis, who lives in Dickleburgh, came through at half distance to win by 13 seconds. Josun Cole (Iceni Velo) was best Under 14, having recovered from a difficult start to almost catch Colbert on the line.

The 50+ men’s race had just got under way and the women were starting when the heavens opened. Scotter (Iceni) took an immediate lead and, helped by a minor pile-up behind, had 33 seconds in hand at the end of the first lap, a lead that never looked in doubt.

Richard Muchmore (Revel Outdoors) won the 50+ race on mate Mike Bowen’s spare bike after a first lap puncture.

By the time the 40-40 Vets raced, the course was cutting up and getting really challenging – and the more skilful competitors were revelling in the mud. Ian Newby (Diss & District), out of the top placings so far this year, led from the start. Back at the scene of some of his most famous victories as a senior, Newby showed the way round, initially with John Swindells (Iceni) on his wheel, but soon opening a steady one-minute gap on eventual second Paul Groombridge (Iceni) who had Antony Birt (Ipswich BC) in his muddy wake.

The rain eased before the seniors’ race, but climbs that had earlier been ridable became run-ups and the sound of brakes on sand-covered alloy was pervasive. At the front Diss rider James (Renvale) and Matt Webber (Hackney GT) were neck and neck until Webber punctured and unluckily had a long run to the pits – James had a 1:02 margin at the flag. Top Norfolk finisher was sixth-paced Barney Horne.

Iceni Velo’s Dougal Toms went over the handlebars while leading the National Youth Series race at Durham University, but still finished fifth and is third overall at the halfway point of the six-race series.

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