MATT Bottrill proved why he was the pre-event favourite by winning Rugby Racing Cycling Club’s (RRCC) open time trial event on Saturday.
There was a record entry of 150 competitors for the ten-mile event which was held on the local A45-based course between Thurlaston and Ryton.
As ever it was a well supported event with two riders travelling from Glasgow, while the weather stayed sunny, despite the days before and after delivering rain.
Coalville-based Bottrill crossed the finish line first in a winning time of 19 minutes and three seconds, but a strong wind on the outward leg meant he was never going to beat the course record of 18 minutes and 25 second which he set in last year’s event.
Jack O’Neill and Matt Clinton were both representing Mike Vaughan Cycles (Kenilworth), riding the super-fast Trek Speed Concept TT bikes, but they could not stop National Champion Bottrill from stealing the headlines.
Clinton at one point led the event after crossing in 19.10, which was some way off his personal best, but his rival was able to finish seven seconds ahead to take the win.
O’Neill has been showing great form in recent weeks and he did not disappoint by on the fastest course in the Midlands District. Despite a strong wind blowing across the course, O’Neill finished in a time of 20.12 which was a new personal best and placed him third overall.
A second and third respectively for Clinton and O’Neill shows they are showing signs of hitting form at the right time ahead of this weekend’s National 25-mile Championships near High Wycombe.
The highest placed Rugby rider was Simon Bayliss who recorded a time of 21 minutes and 30 seconds for 15th place.
Rugby RCC Top 10:
1. Matthew Bottrill (19.03), 2 Matt Clinton (19.10), 3 Jack O’Neill (20.12), 4 David Kiernan (20.26), 5 Jon Simpkins (20.31), 6 James Middleton (20.45), 7 David Mead (20.50), 8 David Watson (21.00), 9 Christopher Halford (21.01), 10 Robert Gibbons (21.13)