Dunmow Velo earn trip to World event

Dunmow Velo riders Jonathan James, Rob Nixon, Bruce Search and Simon Watson at the Tour of Cambridge

Dunmow Velo riders Jonathan James, Rob Nixon, Bruce Search and Simon Watson at the Tour of Cambridgeshire - Credit: Archant

A group of 16 riders from Dunmow Velo joined 8,000 other cyclists at the Tour of Cambridgeshire recently – and produced some impressive performances.

The event is a qualifier for the UCI World Amateur Grand Fondo Championships, with those inside the top 25 per cent of their age group getting the chance to represent their country.

And after the 80-mile race, seven of the Dunmow Velo riders managed to qualify by virtue of their impressive finishing times.

This year’s World Championships are being held in Varese, Italy on September 2, with Jonathan James qualifying in the 40-44 age group in a time of three hours 17 minutes 16 seconds.

Andrew Hills (3:17.11) qualified in the 45-49 category, while a quartet of riders booked their places in the 55-59 section. These included Simon Watson (3:18.01), Mark Nelson (3:26.33), Bruce Search (3:32.05) and Robert Nixon (3:32.15).

The other Dunmow rider to qualify was Stephen Easom, in the 65-69 age group in 3:43.21 and all riders who completed the ride received medals upon crossing the line.

Those who qualified for the World Championships received a special UCI medal which features the famous rainbow stripes associated with world champions within the sport of cycling.

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A Dunmow Velo club spokesperson said: “Although the seven riders have yet to decide whether to attend the World Championships, they are pleased that their hard work and training throughout the winter months has given them the opportunity to represent their country on an international level.

“The time off work, financial cost and general logistics are proving hurdles for some.”

Dunmow Velo are proud of the achievements of the riders and continue their club rides and social programme for all abilities.

Anyone wishing to seek further information about the club can visit dunmowvelo.co.uk. All abilities are welcome and the club prides itself on its friendliness and warmth.

Club runs meet at the Dunmow Leisure Centre on Sundays and Wednesdays. Distance is typically 35 miles and several groups ensure all abilities are catered for.

For those who are not sure if they are ready to join a club run, Saturday June 16 sees another leisurely 20-25 mile ‘tea and cake ride’ ideal for novices leaving the leisure centre at 2pm.