IT was an April hat-trick for Darwen’s top racing cyclist of the moment Ian Cox, who made it three out of three in 10-mile time trials at Garstang during the month.

Cox, a member of the North Lancashire Road Club, was outright winner of the Wigan Wheelers promotion on the A6 based course on Saturday afternoon with a time of 21 minutes 26 seconds in very windy conditions.

His margin over second-placed Paul Greenhalgh of Manchester Wheelers was 17 seconds with our next best local rider Ian Stott, of Blackburn and District CTC, taking fifth slot with 21-54.

Cox also led his club to their third team win in April being supported on this occasion by Fraser Snape (22-51) and Mark Bateman (23-13).

On the following morning in the Wigan Wheelers 30-miler it was Stott who came out top rider overall with a superb time of one hour seven minutes and 23 seconds in atrocious conditions of high winds and driving rain, when more than 20 of the entrants decided to stay in bed rather than face the conditions.

Stott’s team-mate Chris Edmondson took sixth overall with 1-10-19 but the CTC club failed to field a third rider to secure the team award, which went to the Cleveleys Road Club.

Clayton Velo’s Peter Greenwood again produced an excellent ride for his 60 years of 1-10-23, which easily gave him the veterans prize for best on age standard, while Blackburn’s Sue Cheetham took the fastest lady award with 1-28-41.

All of East Lancashire’s midweek evening time trials are getting underway, giving new riders as well as established ones a chance of an evening of competition. The Rossendale Road Club 10 mile on Tuesday evenings at Hapton has signing on near junction nine on the M65 by 6.45pm, although there are exceptions.

The North Lancashire Road Club begin their Wednesday evening series next week with signing on at Edisford Bridge Car Park by 6.45pm.

The Pendle Forest event hit very poor weather conditions and the event was cancelled.

They are running alternate weeks this season with the next promotion on Thursday, May 10 from Thornton-in-Craven.

An exciting three weeks lies ahead on the international scene with a strong Sky team, led by Mark Cavendish, starting the Tour of Italy on Saturday.