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Harley turns on power in record win as Yarmouth club claim team honours

PUBLISHED: 15:27 26 September 2017

Harley Matthews on his way to a new course record at the Godric CC 25. Picture: Dominic Austrin

Harley Matthews on his way to a new course record at the Godric CC 25. Picture: Dominic Austrin

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Great Yarmouth rider Harley Matthews pulverised the course record for the Waveney Valley 25-mile course when he won the Godric CC 25 in 51:37.

Bungay veteran Jim Caplin, seen here in touring mode. Picture: Fergus MuirBungay veteran Jim Caplin, seen here in touring mode. Picture: Fergus Muir

The DAP CC man’s ride left second-placed Mark Richards – winner on the same road the previous day – over two-and-a-half minutes in arrears and led the Yarmouth-based DAP CC to the team prize.

Conditions were by no means perfect, with a rising crosswind on the Redenhall-Bungay shuttle course – which affected Matthews, off late in the starting order, more than most.

There was a remarkable fourth place overall for 55 year-old David Procter (VeloVelocity). His time of 54:38 also won the veterans’ section - only three weeks after suffering an accident in Cambridgeshire.

Topping the handicap awards was Matt O’Brian (54:44, fifth overall) who has come from a triathlon background to make his mark in the Suffolk coast club Plomesgate CC.

Nowich rider Jimmy Piper, seen last season at Ipswich. Picture: Fergus MuirNowich rider Jimmy Piper, seen last season at Ipswich. Picture: Fergus Muir

The Godric club’s veterans proved closely matched with 79-year-old John Pugh fastest on scratch with 1:15:58, while Jim Caplin took the honours on standard, his 1:18:06 beating the standard for his age – 82 - by five minutes exactly, while Pugh’s “plus” was just 4:08.

The VC Baracchi’s 10-miler the previous day used the same Waveney Valley road, but starting from the Bungay end – which made for a tough start, or alternatively got the difficult headwind climb out of Earsham out of the way first, according to which way you looked at it. Organiser Mark Richards started last and won the event in 20:47, 18 seconds ahead of Stuart Fairweather, who in turn was just ahead of his VeloVelocity team manager Paul Jay (21:11).

Norwich rider Jimmy Piper (MS Society), who was 50+ cyclo-cross league champion last season, opened his new account with a win on a dry dusty course at Northlands, Basildon. After initially swapping places with Richard Muchmore (Renvale), Piper opened a gap and survived a contretemps with a fallen back-maker to win by 12 seconds.

Top local finishers in the Senior race were Kieran Jarvis (fourth) and Seb Herrod (fifth). Gemma Melton (XRT/Elmy) took a remarkable second to Elspeth Grace in the women’s race.

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