The Banbridge CC club race league and open race programme concluded on Sunday at the Thomas White Memorial TT. The event hosted a round of the Cycling Ireland Para-cycling National League, but also up for competition were the club competitions for the Jack Carson Cup, for fastest Master rider on the day, and the Lutton Cup which is a handicapped competition. The points from the Lutton Cup would be the final points available for the 2023 BCC Club Race League.
Pre-race favourite for the Jack Carson, Erwin McKee, was a last-minute withdrawal on Sunday morning, leaving it open to a number of M40 & M50 riders who have been turning in fantastic performances recently. Fastest of the lot was Philip Castles who claimed his first club competition win. Philip is another of our competitors who has had fantastic results this season, including the Aquabike National Championship title in July.
The Lutton Cup results seen several club riders drop significant time from their handicap targets, but it was Martin Duffy who achieved the biggest gains to win the final competitive cup of the year. Martin will be a popular winner among the club TT fraternity for the work and effort he puts into co-ordinate and corral our testers for the various TT events across the country.
The 2023 club league has seen the lead change hands week after week as we approached the finale, and with several riders within reach of overall honours. Defending Champion Aaron Parks put in a late season surge in a bid to retain his title from 2022, however fell just 6 points shy of the tally required to overcome Paul Wilkinson who led the league following his victory in the Hill Climb last week.
Paul’s had a fantastic debut club racing season with BCC, picking up his first victory with 2-up partner Luke Osborne in the MAC 2-Up Trophy in April, and book-ending it with another victory in late August. He was also victorious in the Dennison Cup hilly TT, and 2nd in both the Skelly Cup and Maxwell Cup, showing remarkable consistency all season and is a deserved winner of the 2023 Club League.
Ruth McKee has also had a strong year with a number of high placings and is the highest-ranking woman, earning her the Mayne Cup – a cup she last won in 2021. Riley Smyth leads the Youth rider club rankings for the year, which will see him collect the Downey Cycles Cup for a second year running.
Many thanks to all those behind the scenes and on the ground co-ordinating, organising and facilitating the club and inter-club races throughout the year; week-in, week-out. It’s been another hugely successful league with 48 point scoring members participating, so thanks also to all the club competitors and visitors who have supported the events.
2023 Banbridge CC Club League Table