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Ratae's 2023/24 CX season highlights and successes

Updated: Feb 12

Ruthie Coles reports:

The Ratae have had a super season racing cyclocross. This year we have had 15 riders competing in the Leicestershire Cyclocross League. The League attracts a great many riders from around the county and beyond, and is fiercely contested.

The racing began with a vengeance with the first race at Marston Lodge. It started off with a gravel climb followed by some slippery singletrack, and then we got into the trees! The course was hilly, technical and very exciting, it was also our first outing at LCXL with the new club gazebo…

We had a very fast and dry second round in Corby. It was a grassy course with some very technical and rooty descents thrown in.

There were two races again in the very beautiful grounds of Misterton Hall, and our local race in Western Park followed by a new circuit at Market Harborough Show ground and Mallory Park. These last two races were brutes! Both were on cold, windy days and the courses were very challenging in different ways – Harborough being a slippery slog, and Mallory being a super technical course in soft conditions – I enjoyed both of them!

The thing about cross, is that everyone’s in it together and everyone helps each other out, not just in the Ratae, but all the riders are really supportive of one another. Obviously it gets pretty competitive at times, but that is all part of the fun. Within each race, no matter where you are in the field, there will be someone around you you will be racing against. This makes for some really exciting battles, and if you take a tumble, though you could hurt yourself, for the most part you just get a bit muddy!

We had a lot of Ratae riders coming out to offer support and encouragement throughout the season which was lovely to see and no mean feat by club members on a cold winter’s morning.

We had a good season in the league this year too, with two podium places: Biggi Gaillard secured a third place in her category (well done Biggi!) and I came second in mine, which I was very pleased with. 

We also ran two intra-club competitions to make things even more exciting. One was a GC classification. Basicaly the winner is the rider who completes the series in the shortest time – there are time penalties for missing a race or a DNF. The results of this are on the website's Results page but our podium positions are: 3rd, Chris Spray, 2nd, Ed Watson, and 1st, Ruthie Coles.

The other contest was a handicap event with the handicap being taken from a pre

vious race in the series. The winner of this was John Redfearn (well done John!).

We are continuing to run regular cx practice sessions and a monthly off-road ride (see website for details).



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