When Northern Ireland hosted the start of the Giro d’Italia in 2014, little did the UK cycling world anticipate that its legacy would result in an annual sportive that has grown in numbers year on year.
This year the sportive attracted nearly 5,000 competitors covering two routes.
When the outcome of the results were announced last week, Ayr Roads/Harry Fairbairn Cycling Club featured in the top women finishers. Kathryn Thomson excelled again this year by taking 8th place out of a field of 400 lady competitors in the prestigious Giro d’Italia Sportive. This was Kathryn’s third year in succession in taking a top ten placing in the shorter 58 km route. The event started at Stormont Estate and took in a circular route along the delightful roads of County Down before taking to the shores of Strangford Lough on the Ards Peninsula.
Kathryn recorded a time of 2 hours 9 minutes 40 seconds for the distance. She was accompanied by her husband Alan, also a member of the Roads club. Both are keen non racing cyclists and have toured extensively at home and abroad. A great results for the Roads pair.
Meanwhile at home the poor weather last week curtailed activity and with no racing scheduled, only the club confined 10 Mile TT took place last Thursday night with only two members braving the elements. The winner was Thomas Gooding-Hill with a time of 23:35, near to a personal best. Aileen Fisher recorded a time of 29 minutes 27 seconds.
Down in England Iain Fisher represented the club in the weekly criterium at Prissick, Middlesbrough finishing in 8th position. On Saturday he travelled to Leeds to compete in a tough Cat 4 race, finishing 20th.
The weekly Sunday club run took seven riders out by Culroy to Maybole, then the Wallacetown Loop to Maidens and home by the coast. Away from the roads, a few members went mountain biking to Falls of Clyde. An enjoyable time was had with a few comedy fall offs and plenty of nettle stings as souvenirs.