2009 Round 8 Pembrey Country Park
Pembrey Country Park provided a welcome respite from the mud of previous weeks. The sandy ground showed little evidence of all the rainfall and bikes and riders remained (relatively) spotless to the end. Unlike much of Wales, the weather was dry, with the sun even making a brief appearance. The firm and flattish course made for a fast pace and small groups of riders formed, some taking advantage of some shelter from an increasingly strong and cold wind, resulting in several sprint finishes.
There were some welcome new faces from the local Towy Riders club in the U12s race but yet again Abergavenny RC was out in force taking the top 3 places in both the U12 and U10 categories. With the course possibly not suiting her, local girl Jessica Roberts was well off the pace as Teifion Best romped to another victory well ahead of Nathan Ford. Ben Beckingsale held off the challenge from track rider Sam Tillett to finish 3rd while further back Bethan Manley won a ding-dong race for 2nd U12 Girl from Elizabeth Bennett. U10 Joe Beckingsale took advantage of being lapped by Teifion to make his now customary dash for the line ahead of Megan James and Huw Higgins-Worrall and local boy Owain Roberts split the Abergavenny RC pack finishing 3rd U10 Boy.
Matthew Thompson of Maindy Flyers prevented a Towy Riders clean sweep in an impressive field of 27 Youth riders. With William Worrall out in front on his own, it was down to team-mates Owen James and Scott Davies to contest 2nd and 3rd place, first with Geraint Manley and then Thompson, who was initially off the pace. Thompson eventually overhauled first Manley and then Davies to take 3rd behind James and emphatic winner Worrall. Amy Roberts again rode strongly to finish 1st U16 Girl and U14 Emily Haycox made it another victory over Ffion James at the venue. Sam Beckingsale continued his return to form with a win in the U14 Boys.
As with Worrall in the Youth race no-one could stay with Lee Williams in the Senior race; only Anthony O’Boyle and Veteran Ian Jeremiah finished on the same lap. While Williams, O’Boyle and Jeremiah ploughed lonely furrows up ahead, groups of riders formed behind. Williams’ Wiggle team-mate Matthew Page won the sprint for 4th place from the first group and an enthralling duel between the leading Junior riders in the second group saw Luke Cornish take his first win over Sam Anstice in another sprint finish. Laura Williams was 1st Woman.