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Ingliston Crit Series #2
April 24, 2003
Former Scottish champion crushes opposition in power display
By Neil Muir
Former Scottish Champion Ken Russell (Edinburgh Road Club) gave a superb display of powerful and tactical riding in Round 2 of the Ingliston Crit Series held on 24 April. In a pulsating race of constant attacking he broke away from the leading group of 5 with 3 laps to go and held off a rampant Richard Chapman (Unattached) to win by 3 seconds.
David Lines (Pedal Power) was the first to go clear but as he was caught a group of 5 containing Chapman, last year's Scottish Mountain Bike XC champion Craig Hardie (Hardie Bikes), Gary Hand (Pedal Power) and Richard Garrett (Edinburgh RC) got away. After Chapman had taken the first sprint prime from Hardie, the break was reeled in and peace briefly broke out. This didn't suit Hand who attacked again and went clear this time with Graham McGarrity. Russell was attempting to bridge across alone and these three riders took the points for the second sprint, with Chapman and Martin Lonie ( City of Edinburgh RT) some 7 seconds down and the bunch at 12 seconds.
Shortly after there was a general regrouping with all the breakaways except Hand absorbed by the bunch. Hand ploughed on alone with the bunch at 8 seconds. Then Hardie attacked and quickly joined Hand. The two were working hard together with the gap to the bunch holding at 5 seconds. Hardie took the third sprint with Russell leading the bunch through. Up the drag into the headwind Russell put in a powerful surge to take himself clear of the bunch but with Lines and Scott McCrae (both Pedal Power) glued to his wheel defending for Hand. After a determined chase the leading 5 came together with 5 laps remaining.
The bunch was still chasing hard at 10 seconds and with 4 laps remaining McGarrity and Chapman decided it was time to join the party. Russell had been taking a breather as the Pedal Power boys worked to keep the break away and as the two chasers made contact he attacked again. As he drove through the finish line with 2 to go determination written on his face, the chasers were only 4 seconds down. On the last lap Chapman surged across from the group and it looked like Russell's gamble was over as the Commonwealth Games rider closed to within 20 yards at the tight chicane.
However, Russell who had figured prominently in the tough Girvan race finishing just 3 days earlier, managed to dredge up the last ounce of energy from tired legs to go again, and he crossed the line with seconds to spare for a magnificent victory. McGarrity led home the remainder of the break leaving the Pedal Power team wondering what went wrong.
First round winner Calum McGregor had a frustrating evening chasing in the bunch. Chapman takes over as series leader.
The supporting race saw a first win for series sponsor Pete Lambie (Kingdom RT) in a sprint finish. He had featured in a near race-long break with Sean Rhodes and Martin Ross of the promoting Edinburgh Road Club who could neither outfox nor out power him to make their numerical superiority pay. Steve McQueen took the bunch sprint 35 seconds down.
Shaun Rhodes leads the table from Pete Lambie.
1 Ken Russell (Edinburgh Road Club) 2 Richard Chapman (Unattached) 3 Graham McGarrity (Scotoil Multisport RT) 4 Gary Hand (Pedal Power) 5 Craig Hardie (Hardie Bikes) 6 David Lines (Pedal Power) 7 Scott McCrae (Pedal Power) 8 James McCallum (Unattached) 9 Calum McGregor (GS Modena) 10 Joe Wilson (Dunfermline CC) Support race 1 Pete Lambie (Kingdom RT) 2 Shaun Rhodes (Edinburgh RC) 3 Martin Ross (Edinburgh RC) 4 Steve McQueen (Falkirk BC) 5 Ben Abrahams (West Midlands) 6 Colin Fergus (Unattached First woman 1 Denise Lamond (Edinburgh Road Club) First junior 1 Chris Paton (Edinburgh Road Club)