Middridge CRT Spring Road Race
PHIL BATEMAN (Chesterfield Coureurs) halted the run of successes in local races by Thornaby cyclist Paul Curran with a fine win in Middridge CRT's Spring Road Race.
Curran was fresh from a win in the Leeds Wellington Hilly Time Trial, which he won by 23 seconds..
A seven-man breakaway dominated the 57-mile Middridge event after the action was started by 11 riders. With less than two laps of the 9 1/2 mile Skutterskelfe circuit completed, Paul Fisher, Bateman, Geoff Davison, Mike Kelly, Jonathan Clay, Steve Rigby, Dave Lund, Curran, Mike Milen, John Gill and Dave Thompson took the initiative.
Milen and Fisher were dropped, shortly followed by Lund when the break had a lead of over two and a half minutes at half distance. This gap was main tamed until the last lap when Gill was also dropped.
Climbing Skutterskelfe Bank for the final time Bateman, Curran, Clay and Rigby escaped, Bateman getting the verdict by inches from Curran.
As three of his breakaway companions are riding the Girvan Easter Three Day on Saturday, Paul will have some indication of the opposition he will be up against.
1. P Bateman (Chesterfield Coureurs), 2hrs 9mins lsec
2. P Curran (Manchester Whs)
3. J Clay (Leeds RC)
4. Rigby (Leeds RC) same time
5. G Davison (Chesterfield Coureurs) at 8sec
6. M Kelly (Dinninton RC) same time
7. D Thompson (Thornaby CRT) at 15 secs
8. A Johnson (VC Nottingham) at 1min
9. B Pickles (Clayton Velo)
10. A Durham (Club Velo Cruz) same time.