18 December 2016 Adam McGreevy

Banbridge Cycling Club’s John Buller was crowned Ulster Junior Cyclo-Cross Champion at the 2016 Ulster Cyclo-Cross Championships at Mallusk on Sunday 18 December.  John had a flawless race, taking the lead from the first corner.  He kept ahead in a close battle with XMTB’s Thomas Creighton throughout the race, making his break after running the sand section. He crossed the line with plenty in hand.  John’s win gives him a Grand Slam of Provincial Junior Titles being the Current Ulster Junior MTB XC and well as Junior Road Champion in addition to his Ulster Junior Cyclo-Cross Champion.

Speaking after the race John said, “ The Course was great with a bit of everything- technical sections, sand, steep banking, off-camber and running. The Conditions suited me well but I knew the XMTB McConvey Cycles’ boys (Thomas Creighton & Craig McCarthy) wouldn’t give me any distance! I attacked early opening a gap on the field, mid race it was closed down as Thomas caught me, battling hard throughout the remainder of the closing laps. It was exiting the sand pit, when running,  I attacked as I knew I was stronger on foot than he was. Getting back on the bike I had 3/4 of the lap left, so I rode as hard as I could to ensure I got the title! Tops off my year by far! Ulster MTB, Road and CX champion in 2016!”  He also thanked the Club Supporters “They were a massive help during the race, motivating me on to the win”

Powerhouse’s Niamh McKivergan also produced an excellent run in the Under 16 Race and after a nip and tuck race pulled away to win clearly from Darcy Harkness, Carn Wheelers. Clearly happy with her new Gold medal winning Focus CX Bike – an early Christmas present perhaps!

The Senior Race once again saw an utterly dominant win from Roger Aiken, winning by a country mile from Glen Kinning and the rest of the field.  Banbridge CC’s Matt Adair had an excellent race finishing just outside the top 10, on his first outing of the season.

Banbridge Riders Chris McCann and Ruth Aiken also had good races.  Chris took a bit of a tumble and lost ground finishing 8th.  Ruth would have preferred things a bit muddier though, remarking that her bikes have hardly needed washing all year!

 A Word of thanks to Jonathan Buller, Liam McKivergan and Ian Cochrane; all helping out in the pits, sorting the riders with fresh bikes when needed.

Thanks are also due to event organiser’s Kinning Cycles, they produced an excellent course and a superbly organised event. We hope that this venue will remain on the CX calendar.


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