BIKE ace Lance Cronshaw is gearing up for another tilt at the Ace of Aintree title this year.

The talented Great Harwood rider was a front-runner in the hotly-contested five-round series last year, finishing third overall on his Bob Wright Racing Yamaha R6.

And Cronshaw was a contender for the title right up until the drama-filled final round.

After drawing 15th on the grid for the qualifying race, he was clipped by a novice rider going into the first corner.

Cronshaw went down heavily, and although his bike was unscathed, his arm took most of the impact.

Although in severe pain, he was cleared by race doctors for the final, and after a gritty ride to fifth place – in agony – he claimed third overall in the series.

It was only a week later when an X-ray at the Royal Blackburn Hospital revealed a break just below the elbow.

“He was in a lot of pain, but he refused to give in,” said Cronshaw’s dad Phillip.

“If he shows that sort of determination this year, he’ll definitely be at the front again.”

Cronshaw will again have the use of two Yamaha R6 machines, one set up for a dry track and the other for a wet one. Both have been supplied by his long-time back Bob Wright.

He was sponsored by for the third year running by Cranberry Coachways of Great Harwood.

The Ace of Aintree Championship gets underway in March.