THE Lakes and Lancs Sporting Courses Series (SPOCO) for 2014 came to a close on Sunday when the last of more than 20 counting events was held over the 10.3 mile circuit at Bolton-by-Bowland.
It was organised by the Rossendale Road Club whose Mike O’Shea has been busy since February collating the interim SPOCO placings. The series winner was Border City Wheelers’ Richard Bickley but East Lancashire riders took a big share of the top 10.
Billington’s Mark Haydock finished second in the final table with Burnley’s Peter Greenwood of Team Swift in third.
The North Lancashire Road Club trio of Haydock, Duncan Park and Austin Foy were winners of the overall team award even though Foy had to miss the final counter as he opted to ride a 100 mile event in Cheshire.
Haydock was the winner of that last qualifier in 25 minutes 18 seconds beating arch rival Ian Stott of Blackburn and District CTC into second place.
Duncan Park was third in 25mins 38secs with Greenwood fourth in 25mins 43secs and Chris Smedley (Nelson Wheelers 26mins 28secs) and Nick Cooper (Rossendale Road Club 26mins 54secs) beating the 27 minute barrier to take fifth and sixth respectively.
The close battle between Haydock and Stott had continued in the midweek 10 mile at Edisford.
This time Stott took the honours in 23mins 18secs to the 23mins 34secs of Haydock. Darwen’s Paul Taylor was fourth in 24mins 20secs.
The Rossendale Road Club midweek 10 mile on the Hapton based course was won by Colne’s Sam Boast riding for the Wheelbase team in 24 minutes 22 seconds.
Karl Smith of Blackburn continued his increasingly successful comeback taking second in 24mins 37secs with Rossendale riders Roy Flanagan third in 25mins 11secs and Nick Cooper fourth in 25mins 20secs.
Pendle Forest promote a 10 mile this evening from Thornton-in-Craven with a 7pm start.
Meanwhile, there is no holding Darwen’s Ian Cox back as less than a week after smashing his North Lancashire Road Club 100 mile record he knocked three minutes off his own 50 mile record.
That took place on a course between Derby and Stoke where Cox clocked an outstanding 1hour 43mins 39secs.
In the same event Rossendale’s Roy Flanagan clocked a personal best of 1hr 54mins 20secs but Burnley’s Greenwood had to retire after feeling unwell while Pendle Forest’s Jason Bateman was a non-starter after sustaining a broken collarbone after an accident with a car in midweek.