There may be large numbers of youngsters coming into the sport of cycling, but when it comes to victories it is still the old guard who are leading the way in 2012.
At least that was the case last weekend, with veterans securing victories in several time trials across the country.
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Bath CC’s Rob Pears is clearly a man in form, and the 49-year-old won the Swindon Road Club hilly 23-mile event at Devizes, Wiltshire, with an impressive time of 52-51, beating his younger rival Ben Anstie (Cadence Cannondale) by almost a minute.
Former British Best All-Rounder Ian Cammish (Sonic Cycles) also secured victory, the 55-year-old winning the Bedfordshire Roads CC 25 at Tempsford with 56-52, 19 seconds quicker than his nearest rival, Phil Brown of Didcot Phoenix.
Another former BBAR and now veteran rider, Kevin Dawson won the VTTA (Notts and East Midlands) 10-mile event – both on actual time and standard.
Now riding for Strategic Lions, 42-year-old Yorkshireman Dawson clocked 20-27 and had a plus of 5-42 on his age standard.
In the West Kent RC 10, Kevin Tye (Datateam Allstars) was flying the flag for the older generation, the 50-year-old taking the win with 21-21 for the Harrietsham course to win by 25 seconds from Kent Cycles RC rider Mike Piper. Tye was also named the fastest veteran on standard with a plus of 5-22.
Former Commonwealth Games rider and Premier Calendar winner John Tanner showed his time trialling prowess when the 44-year-old teamed up with Sportscover team-mate Colin Humphrey to win the Ryton Tri Club 18-mile event at Ponteland in Northumberland, clocking 38-43 to win by more than two minutes.
But the veterans didn’t have it all their own way with John Tuckett, the Blumilk.com rider who is a spring chicken at just 31 years old, winning the Bishop Auckland CC SPOCO 32-mile event at Hamsterley in County Durham.
He clocked 1-15-43 to hold off Ferryhill Wheelers rival Keith Murray by 1-15, while Ian Knights (VC Briganti) was another minute off his pace in third spot.
In Lancashire, 38-year-old Tony Greenhalgh (Wheelbase) coped well with a sunny but cold morning at Cockerham to win the Ribble Valley CRC 25 with a time of 56-13 to beat Paul Shallicker (Coveryourcar.co.uk) by more than two minutes.
Greenhalgh’s ride came very close to the course record of 56:00 despite the cold morning.
And over the other side of the Pennines, Jason Bateman (Pendle Forest CC) and Michael Ellerton (Team Swift) paired up to good effect in winning Saturday’s Darlington CC two-up 10 with 22-01, six seconds quicker than their nearest rivals.
The 25-mile team competition record fell to Drag2Zero.com in the VTTA (South Wales) 25 at Glynneath. Matt Bottrill clocked 46-47, Derek Parkinson 48-52 and Mark Holton 48-07, bringing the team total to 2-23-46
That beats the record set by i-ride.co.uk in 2011 by 3-59. Bottrill was also a member of that i-ride team.