Cheshire Classic Women's Road Race | 26th April 2015

Cheshire Classic Women's Road Race

Sunday 24th April 2016

Part of British Cycling's National Series. Organised by Weaver Valley Cycling Club.

Cheshire Classic 2016 Cancelled

We are sorry to announce that the 2016 edition of the Cheshire Classic Women’s Road Race has had to be cancelled. A suitable course which met both the Cycle Racing on the Highway Regulations Act 1960 and a British Cycling risk assessment could not be found.

This is not a decision that I, Andy Wood, as Organiser, or my peers at Weaver Valley Cycling Club, have taken lightly. We (Weaver Valley Cycling Club) tried everything possible to make this year’s race happen. We are disappointed to publish today’s announcement.

In July 2015 we learnt that Cheshire Police would not approve races where the course did not meet Cycle Racing on the Highway Regulations Act 1960. There are a number of considerations that we need to take account when this rule is enforced however the main points are:

·        A circuit has to be 10 miles or more in length

·        The race must not spend more than 1.5 miles in a 40mph zone or less

·        The race must spend no more than 3 miles in total in a 40mph zone or less

The current Cheshire Classic Women’s Road Race course in Acton Bridge does not meet these regulations. Previously the Cycle Racing on the Highway Regulations Act 1960 had been waived on the discretion of Cheshire Police, allowing us to use shorter courses and extend the speed restricted areas depending on full assessment by British Cycling & Cheshire Police. Cheshire Police are now strictly enforcing the Cycle Racing on the Highway Regulations Act 1960 with no exceptions. This has affected other cycle races in the area not just the Cheshire Classic Women’s Road Race.

Producing an approved circuit for racing in Cheshire is becoming very difficult, not least because we are working with a 1960 act in 2016 road conditions to:

·        Produce a circuit over 10 miles in length which is safe; uses wide, good quality, quiet roads, junctions which we can be marshalled easily and safely, and doesn’t include traffic lights, is near on impossible

·        Satisfy the requirements of an event such as the Cheshire Classic Women’s Road Race requires a circuit to safely handle 500+ spectators and a convoy which is nearly a mile in length. It also needs to be close to a suitable HQ which would host over 200 people

·        Comply with the act. The road conditions have changed significantly. The small villages we pass through (which would have had a national speed limit running through them) are now 30 or 40 mph zones.

In October 2015 we understood that there would be no resolution with Cheshire Police. We submitted a new circuit around Delamere, which we believed was suitable and met regulation, to British Cycling for assessment on the 4th November 2015. We discovered on the 18th January 2016 through the Chief Commissaire appointed to the race that the circuit had not been approved. On the 3rd February 2016 we received advice on why the circuit had not passed initial assessment and would not be considered for a full risk assessment.

Meanwhile on 27th January 2016 an alternative circuit was drawn up by British Cycling around Beeston. This was declined due to passing through a major tourist attraction each lap and the roads which we felt were too narrow to feature the race.

This left us with one other alternative, a circuit around Great Budworth which had been approved for our 3rd and 4th category Autumn Road Race in October. We declined this circuit on two grounds.

1.      We felt it wasn’t suited to an Elite race, it was not challenging enough for this level of rider and most importantly we felt the environment would not support the requirements of the race (such as the length of convoy and spectator points).

2.      At this point we would have less than 2 months to fully organise the race, take entries, organise an appropriate HQ, confirm sponsors and market the race. This process would usually start in November.

As part of the process. We explored partial road closures with our contacts at Chester & Cheshire West council, who we are incredibly indebted to. The cost of doing this, together with the time needed for approval, would prohibit this from being a possibility.

We subsequently submitted a course on 24th February 2016 that British Cycling had previously approved in 2008 around Delamere. This was rejected by British Cycling as it would need reassessment. Following a ride around the course we also had concerns over the road quality and if we would be able to resolve this issue in time for the race with the local authority.

Yesterday we were provided with an ultimatum from British Cycling to provide a suitable local course and a commitment that we could host the race in the timescale available or to cancel the event. At Weaver Valley Cycling Club we are proud to organise high quality races, and have done so for over 40 years. We are not prepared to run a sub-standard race and given the tight restrictions and lack of a suitable approved course we are left with no other alternative but to cancel this year’s edition.

We understand that steps have been taken to amend the Cycle Racing on the Highway Regulations Act. We hope that British Cycling can resolve this issue as a matter of urgency.

We are incredibly sorry to all the riders and the supporters of the race. We know that many have looked forward to this race as part of a major road race series in the women’s calendar. In an Olympic year it is incredibly sad for this to happen when we should be right behind our girls on their way to getting Olympic gold.

We would like thank everyone who has supported us throughout this process.

We hope to be back in 2017.

 


Statement on 2016 race

During 2015, following complaints from the general public (and for clarity not about our race) Cheshire Police enforced the Cycle Racing on the Highways Regulations 1960. In this act it is deemed that circuits need to be over 10 miles in length, together with a number of regulations regarding the distance in and between 40 mile an hour speed limits. Despite many meetings between Cheshire Police, British Cycling and other cycling associations such as TLI, Cheshire Police are not allowing approval of circuits that don’t meet these 1960 regulations. The existing Cheshire Classic course doesn’t meet regulation in a number of areas and cannot be used.

Over the past several months the committee here at Weaver Valley Cycling Club have been determined to keep the race alive. We were given a lifeline in September when a new circuit which we had created for another race of ours was approved. This circuit wouldn’t be the quality needed for the Cheshire Classic however it gave us all hope.

A new circuit is born

We believe we have created one of the best circuits on the Women’s cycling calendar in Europe. This will set a whole new benchmark for Women’s cycling and will be a spectacle like no other. There will be no respite across rolling terrain and will feature a significant climb which dwarfs the Cliff. If ever there was a statement to be made about progression in Women’s cycling this will be it.

The circuit is currently going through approval with British Cycling and then with Cheshire Police. We will keep you posted on progress.


2015 Results

Cheshire Classic Women’s Road Race 2015 Results

Delamere Dairy Sprint – Joanna Rowsell (Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International)

Advanced Medical Solutions Team Prize – Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International

Your Sports Therapist Aggressive Rider – Sarah Storey (Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International)

Position Name Team/Club Category
1 Dame Sarah Storey Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl Elite
2 Laura Trott Matrix Fitness Elite
3 Alice Barnes Betch.NL-Superior-Brentjens MTB Racing Team 3rd
4 Emily Kay Team USN 1st
5 Katie Curtis Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl 1st
6 Louise Mahe IKON – Mazda 1st
7 Charline Joiner Team WNT 1st
8 Laura Greenhalgh Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
9 Henrietta Colborne Bonito Squadra Corse 2nd
10 Emily Nelson Team USN 2nd
11 Nicola Juniper Team Giordana- Triton Elite
12 Eve Dixon Team 22 1st
13 Gabriella Shaw Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl Elite
14 Jennifer George Les Filles Racing Team 1st
15 Natalie Grinczer Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science 2nd
16 Helen Ralston Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
17 Rose Osbourne Team WNT 2nd
18 Anna Christian Wiggle Honda 2nd
19 Susan Freeburn PMR@Toachim House 2nd
20 Ellie Campbell Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science 3rd
21 Gabriella Leveridge Velosure Starley Primal 2nd
22 Jessie Walker Matrix Fitness 1st
23 Gemma Sargent Racing Chance Foundation 2nd
24 Bethany Taylor Bonito Squadra Corse 2nd
25 Kayleigh Brogan Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire 2nd
26 Elizabeth-Jane Harris Army Cycling Union 2nd
27 Ella Hopkins IKON – Mazda 3rd
28 Nicole Oh Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
29 Jennifer Hudson Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science 2nd
30 Julie Erskine IKON – Mazda 1st
31 Rebecca Nixon Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science 2nd
32 Gabriella Nordin GB Cycles.co.uk 2nd
33 Manon Lloyd Team USN 1st
34 Charlotte Broughton Corley Cycles – Drops RT 2nd
35 Chanel Mason Army Cycling Union 2nd
36 Rebecca Rimmington IKON – Mazda 1st
37 Rebecca Carter Team WNT 2nd
38 Annasley Park Team Giordana- Triton 2nd
39 Bethany Hayward Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl 1st
40 Amy Gornall Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire 2nd
41 Louise Laker PMR@Toachim House 2nd
42 Josephine Gilbert Velosure Starley Primal 2nd
43 Vanessa Whitfield Team 22 2nd
44 Frances White Team Jadan 2nd
45 Bethany Crumpton North West MTB Race Team 3rd
46 Hannah Payton Corley Cycles – Drops RT 2nd
47 Ciara Horne Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl 2nd
48 Lucy Shaw Matrix Fitness Development 2nd
49 Joanna Rowsell Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl Elite
50 Penny Rowson Matrix Fitness 2nd
51 Katie Archibald Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl Elite
52 Rebecca Womersley Corley Cycles – Drops RT 2nd
53 Joanne Blakeley Team 22 2nd
54 Hannah Walker Team WNT Elite
55 Lucy Harper Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire 2nd
56 Helen McKay Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
57 Pia De Quint
58 Nicola Soden Carnac-Planet X 2nd
59 Elinor Thorogood Aprire Bicycles/HSS Hire 3rd
60 Ellie Coster Team USN 2nd
61 Melissa Brand IKON – Mazda 2nd
62 Nikola Butler Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl 2nd
63 Victoria Strila PMR@Toachim House 2nd
64 Lauren OBrien Team Giordana- Triton 2nd
65 Alexis Barnes PMR@Toachim House 2nd
66 Emily Attfield Velosure Starley Primal 2nd
67 Chloe Weller PMR@Toachim House 2nd
68 Rebecca Raybould Poole Whls CC 2nd
69 Sandra Mackay Carnac-Planet X 2nd
70 Ruth Taylor Manchester Whlrs Club 2nd
71 Emma Grant IKON – Mazda 2nd
72 Keira McVitty Team Giordana- Triton 1st
73 Sarah Rose Team 22 2nd
74 Sam Burman Team WNT 3rd
DNF Delia Beddis Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
DNF Karla Boddy IKON – Mazda 1st
DNF Laura Cheesman Velosure Starley Primal 2nd
DNF Tracy Corbett Les Filles Racing Team 2nd
DNF Laura Massey IKON – Mazda Elite
DNF Brit Tate Team WNT 1st

Dame Sarah Storey wins Cheshire Classic 2015

Dame Sarah Storey (Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International) won the 2015 Cheshire Classic today (Sunday 26th April), managing to break away and establish a gap of over a minute from the peloton with 3 laps to go. Laura Trott (Matrix Fitness) was second with Alice Barnes (Betch.NL-Superior-Brentjens MTB Racing Team) taking third.

Thanks to her efforts Dame Sarah Storey also picked up the Your Sports Therapist Most Aggressive Rider Competition, her fellow team member Joanna Rowsell taking the Delamere Dairy Sprint Prize on lap 6 and, thanks to all the team’s combined efforts, Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International took home the Advanced Medical Solutions Team Prize.

A great write up with interviews from Huw Williams on British Cycling can be found here.

1. Dame Sarah Storey – Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl
2. Laura Trott – Matrix Fitness
3. Alice Barnes – Betch.NL-Superior-Brentjens MTB
4. Emily Kay – Team USN
5. Katie Curtis – Pearl Izumi Sports Tours Intl
6. Louise Mahe – IKON – Mazda
7. Charline Joiner – Team WNT
8. Laura Greenhalgh – Les Filles Racing Team
9. Henrietta Colborne – Bonito Squadra Corse
9. Emily Nelson – Team USN
11. Nicola Juniper – Team Giordana- Triton

Advanced Medical Solutions Team Prize – Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International

Delamere Dairy Intermediate Sprint – Joanna Rowsell

Your Sports Therapist Aggressive Rider – Dame Sarah Storey