NOT exactly as significant in our country’s history as the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee of this week, but nevertheless the Festival of Britain Trophy of the Rossendale Road Club has made its own mark locally over the last 60 years.
The trophy was given to the Rossendale based club in 1951 by Rossendale Borough Council to be used in competition and is still handed over annually in a selected event.
In recent years it has been presented to the fastest rider in the mid-week two lap time trial around the Bolton-by-Bowland circuit in the Ribble Valley.
This year the Trophy goes to Rob Dickinson of Burnley and a member of the North Lancs Road Club who covered the hilly 22 miles in 56 minutes 51 seconds. Rossendale’s own Martin Tonge was only five seconds down in second slot with Mark Bateman (NLRC) third with 57m 34s and last year’s winner Rossendale’s Derek Schofield fourth in 57m 37s.
There were some wet and bedraggled riders crossing the finishing line in the League of Veteran Racing Cyclists (LVRC) road race around the Bashall Eaves circuit on Sunday morning with some close to hyperthermia.
Out of almost 80 entered for the event there were only 27 who finally arrived at the chequered flag after enduring four or five laps – dependent on age group- around the very hilly eleven mile circuit.
Of our locally based riders Darwen’s Kevin Ainsworth finished fifth in the 50 to 54-year-old group and event organiser Dave Hargreaves of Blackburn was winner of his 65 to 69 year group.
The weather was not much better on nearby roads in the North Lancashire Road Club 10 mile time trial on Wednesday evening but at least the distance was much shorter. Blackburn’s Fraser Snape was fastest clocking 24 minutes 10 seconds with last weeks teenager road race winner Aidan Holgate only 13 seconds adrift in second place.
Duncan Park took third just another second down and Paul Taylor was fourth with 24-41. All four are members of the promoting club with just over 30 riders facing the starting timekeeper despite the poor weather conditions.
There will be no Wednesday evening 10-mile at Edisford on Wednesday as the Blackburn and District CTC are holding their annual Sporting Courses event around one lap of eleven miles around the longer Bashall Circuit. Start time for this one is 7pm with HQ at Bashall village hall.
No ‘Enter on the line’ is available for this event.