Thruxton Circuit Race - 18th March - 4th Cat Frustration and a Fifth Place Finish

Photo Courtesy of Neil Andrews
Today was my first race of 2012, my first road race ever!
It was at Thruxton Motor Racing Circuit - a great venue for a first race; wide, traffic free tarmac with a few chicanes thrown in to challenge the bike handling.

Sam and I sped up to the venue from the ferry to make the start at 10:15, with just a few laps of the paddock for a warm-up. Luckily the start was fairly sedate for the first lap around the 2.3 mile circuit.

By the start of lap two (out of ten), the pace had ramped up, with an average of 23mph. Attacks started going off the front, but no-one could stay clear. Sam and I tried on lap three to make a break, but once they saw two yellow Wightlink Jerseys off the front, the field was quick to reel us back in.

From lap three to lap eight, the race remained much the same; attacks would go, I would chase a few, we would get a little gap, then no-one would work together and the bunch would catch up.

On lap eight there was a crash in the final chicane, luckily Sam and I were both ahead of it, but it brought down a few riders, one of which had to be stretchered off! Hope he was OK!

On lap nine, I was sat near the front, around position three or four; there were a few riders up there that were doing some decent work, so I tried to encourage two of them to come with me on a break on the final climb of that lap. But when it came, I went, they followed, then they never came through when I pulled over once I started red-lining. So, to my frustration it appeared that it was going to come down to a sprint finish - not ideal for me!

So on the last lap Sam and I got our positions; I was a few riders back from the front going into the last 800 meters, just before the chicane. Someone jumped just in front of me, so I kicked as well and went with them, I went through the last bend in about eighth, then was able to just about kick again to pull myself up to fifth for the line.

So fifth place! Not bad for my first road race in a field of 66 riders. It gives me a few points and I only need to do the same again next week and I'll be out of 4th Cat. That really will be a result! Don't get me wrong, I loved every second I was on that bike, but I'm not a sprinter, I need others to work with me in a break-away. The legs are there, but I just need a mutual breakaway companion, either that or obtain a time-trialling ability to go off the front at 28mph and sustain it....don't think that's really going to happen! ;-)

So a great first race really, a little frustrating at times, but I learnt a huge amount. Do the same next week and I'll be out of 4th Cat and have a better chance of making my breakaway dream work in the 3rds hopefully.


  1. Nice write up of the race Tim. My boy, Harry Veale I-Team CC, got the win and will be racing 3rd Cat now. I videoed the finish and think I just have you crossing the line as I lower my phone. Good luck next week.

  2. Awesome stuff! Congratulate Harry for me, what does the I-Team CC kit look like? Was he active at the front of the race much? Hopefully I'll be joining him in the 3rds after this weekend, perhaps he would be willing to try a breakaway ;-)Did you get any photos? it would be great to put a few on the blog. Cheers.

    I think that's you crossing the line. My pictures are on my facebook page (Neil Andrews. If you see any pictures you want I'll send them on.
    Harry is always up for a breakaway.

  4. The photos are fantastic Neil! If you don't mind sending a few over just for me to use on the blog that would be amazing, I will put a full link to your site and include a reference in the text. If you're ok with that send one of Harry winning! and 0164 and 0165 if it's possible. My email address is Many Thanks!
    p.s. I'll look out for Harry when I move up to the 3rds, hopefully we'll get a 1,2 in a race soon :-)

  5. Those photos are not mine that you are referencing but you can buy them directly from Chris Rhymer as hard copy or downloads but you would need to ask his permission to use them on your blog I reckon. I only wish mine were that good of the race. Accept me as a friend on facebook and we can talk further.

  6. Sorry hadn't clicked about them being Chris Rhymer's. Can't seem to add you on facebook, might be your privacy setting. Mine are public, so if you add me: I'll accept and we can sort out a few pictures. Thanks

  7. Hi Tim

    Were you in the yellow kit? The leader took off from the chicane and was never getting caught (congrats Harry), at least he won't be there this Sunday !! The guy at the front of pics 164 and 165 is in third place if you were unsure.

    The photos by Chris Rhymer are really good quality. What you are looking at on have been resized to show on the site so have lost some of the quality.

    Results are up !!



    1. Hi Darren,
      I was indeed the one in the Bright Yellow Kit :-) Congrats on the 7th Darren (Are you Chris' son?) Cheers T

  8. lol Yeah I am !

    Send Chris an email using the contactUs on and ask him if you can use a watermark image with full links. Or just buy it !!



Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Recipe – The Ultimate High Energy Flapjacks

SwissStop Disc Brake Pads Comparison Test Review – Are All Disc Brake Pads Made Equal?

Review – Victorinox Bike Multi Tool Kit

Review – Selle Italia SLR Boost Gravel Superflow Saddle S3

Best Gravel Bike Cycling Routes on the Isle of Wight