[T]he 2018 Lakes RC Ulverston Summer Road Race took place on the 15th July 2018 and was a great success.
The Lakes Road Club event brought amateur road cycle racing back to the Furness area for the first time in several years, and the event created a real buzz in the north west cycle racing community with the event being hugely oversubscribed.
The 55 mile race took place last Sunday in good conditions, dry but windy, and that strong wind did play its part in what was a tough and attritional race on a course that is tough at the best of times.
60 riders from all over the north west – and some from further afield – signed on early Sunday morning, and the race left Ulverston Sports Centre at 9:50 for a neutralised ride for about 2 miles to the Start / Finish line at Birkrigg, where the race proper got underway.
There was an attack fairly early on in the first lap, and a break of 10 riders formed – creating a gap of 20 seconds by the end of the first lap, and it turned out that this was the break from which the eventual winner Adam Hartley from Team 100% ME, would be selected.
This break did contain a lot of the race favourites and once a reasonable time gap had been achieved, this proved impossible for the chasers to bridge the gap.
There was a strong wind blowing in off the sea and this meant a headwind all the way up the long drag from Ulverston to the start / finish line at Birkrigg, making it difficult for the riders. During the course of the race a number of riders got dropped from the leading break and other riders pinged off the front of the main bunch in what ultimately proved to be a fruitless effort to get across to the break. Other riders got distanced from the main bunch during the race, and so there were riders spread over about 20 minutes by the end of the race.
The latter stages of the race saw a number of solo attacks off the front of the break, with local riders Dave Huck (Barrow Central Wheelers) from Dalton-in-Furness and Michael Hall (TBW Bottechia Wigmore Race Team) from Ulverston both attacking but failing to stay away.
The last mile or so of the final lap saw Adam Hartley (100% ME) attack and hold off Michael Hall (TBW Bottechia Wigmore Race Team) for about 5 seconds for the win, with Adam Macrae (Crimson Performance RT) a further 8 seconds back for third place.
There were a good number of cycling fans, as well friends and families of the riders watching the event all round the course, with plenty of people around the Fan Zone at the Start / Finish area.
Event Organiser and club member Richard Dixon commented “We are pleased with the reception that the race had and the atmosphere around the Fan Zone was really good, and a lot of riders commented on what a difference having some good support round the course made.”
Local Riders Making an Impact
Local riders make a big impact in the race, with the winning break containing three local riders; Ulverston rider Michael Hall (TBW Bottechia Wigmore RT) who rode a brilliant race to eventually finish second, Tom Martin from Kirkby (Wheelbase Castelli MGD) who finished in 6th place and Dave Huck from Dalton (Barrow Central Wheelers) who came in 10th, after making a big attack to try and get away from the break on the last lap.
The top 15 places were filled as follows:
Pos Race No. Name Team
1st 26 Adam Hartley Team 100% ME
2nd 25 Michael Hall TBW Bottechia Wigmore Race Team
3rd 38 Adam Macrae Crimson Performance Race Team
4th 22 Jamie Fletcher Ellan Vannin CC / Appleby
5th 23 Ben Granger Kendal Cycle Club
6th 41 Tom Martin Wheelbase Castelli MGD
7th 20 Sam Fairhurst Bill Nickson Cycles Race Team
8th 10 Richard Butler Kendal Cycle Club
9th 51 Jimmy Smith Specialized Racing
10th 28 David Huck Barrow Central Wheelers
11th 12 Jake Cowen
12th 15 Simon Deplitch Team Chronomaster
13th 30 Samuel Jackson
14th 14 Alan Dean Edinburgh Road Club
15th 5 Robin Atkinson Shetland Wheelers
As well as the overall race, two spot prizes, known as Primes were provided by Mountbarrow Service Station for the first across the line on laps two and four, and these were also won by Adam Hartley on lap 2 and Michael Hall on lap 4.
The event took over 50 volunteers to put on, including a 7 strong race committee, over 30 marshals and helpers from the Lakes Road Club, 8 British Cycling Accredited Marshals, 3 Race Commissaires and their assistants and 3 Motorbike Marshals from the National Escort Group. Dixon said “I’d like to say a huge thankyou to everyone who got involved and made such an effort and gave their time to help out the event on, it is really appreciated. We’ve had great feedback and the race officials from British Cycling and the NEG said it was one of the best marshalled events that they’d been to.”