Friday 10 August 2012

Essex Giro

Sarah Storey leads the series
With the European Under-23 Championships and Olympics both grabbing all the headlines this weekend, it's easy to forget that Britain's domestic women's racing scene continues regardless - a pity, because one of the highlights of the National Women's Road Race Series starts on Saturday and finishes a day later. It's the Essex Giro, which usually takes place in Redbridge (but cannot this year because, as BCF put it, "some other little sporting event" is going on down in that part of the world and so instead it's being held at Ugley, near Saffron Walden.

If you've never been to Essex and, as so many do, imagine the entire county to be heavily built-up and full of grey concrete car parks and drive-through burger emporiums, prepare to be very surprised if you decide to see this race - most of Essex is characterised by beautiful rolling farmland punctuated with copses, ponds and attractive, ancient villages, of which Ugley is one (the name, incidentally, is pronounced Oog-lee; but this in no way prevents local newspapers printing stories with headlines such as "Ugley woman marries Nasty man" whenever a resident of the village is wed to one from Nasty, a little over 25km away over the Hertfordshire border).

The event begins at 09:00 with an 8km time trial, this then being followed with a 60km road race at 13:00. On Sunday, the riders face a 120km road race - each event is open to 1st, 2nd, 3rd and Elite category riders, making for a great deal of competition on all levels. It's the sixth round of the Series, Round 5 (Tywyn Crits, Wales) having been cancelled, and the standings to date look like this:

1. Sarah Storey For Viored 180pts
2. Rebecca Heath VC St Raphael Hewitt 136pts
3. Laura Massey Abergavenny RC 97pts
4. Tamina Oliver Abergavenny RC 88pts
5. Penny Rowson Matrix Fitness-Prendas 86pts
6. Molly Weaver Scott Contessa Epic 84pts
7. Lowri Bunn Abergavenny RC 83pts
  Emily Kay Scott Contessa Epic 83pts
9. Lucy Garner Node4-Giordana 79pts
  Nicola Juniper Corvida-Allpress Coffee 79pts
(Full standings)

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