Crit for C.R.Y. 2019 in memory of Alex Jones

With an abundance of emails during the week leading up to the day of racing at Marsh Tracks, ‘Crit for C.R.Y.’ had a good turnout despite clashing with events such as North West Crit Champs.

Criterium Racing Marsh Tracks

The day kicked off with the first ever National B race held at Marsh Tracks, Rhyl. An under-used track in my opinion. A wide, flowing circuit where racing is made interesting by the ever-changing wind direction. With 24 entries but 21 on the start line, the racing was thrown wide open when Swift Pro Carbon rider, Andy Turner, got called over to the Ryedale GP. With a big range of ability on the track, we just had to wait until the racing got under way to see who would come out on top.

Criterium Racing Marsh TracksCriterium Racing Marsh Tracks

From the off Pro Vision Race Team rider, Ben Lloyd, made an aggressive start breaking away from the bunch. However, an unfortunate crash on lap 5 shattered the field meaning a group of 6 made up the leading bunch, including the Pro Vision Race Team Rider. Impressively two Junior riders, Chris Mann (Marsh Tracks Racing) and Thomas Mitchell (Birkenhead North End CC) held their own in the leading bunch with the likes of riders from Ribble Pro Cycling and Velo Runner.

Criterium Racing Marsh TracksCriterium Racing Marsh Tracks

As the race went on it resulted in various bunch sprint across the line apart from race winner, Joseph Bowers. The Team Chronomaster rider attacked with just over 2 laps to go and wasn’t seen again by the bunch which brought him across the line in 1st. Following Bowers was a sprint between Grant Bigham (Velo Runner), Jack Rees (Ribble Pro Cycling) and Junior rider Thomas Mitchell. Bigham took 2nd followed by Rees taking 3rd.

Criterium Racing Marsh TracksCriterium Racing Marsh TracksCriterium Racing Marsh Tracks

Being the Alex Jones Memorial race, Alex’s parents came to present the trophies to the successful riders. An emotional day for them, but pass on their thanks to everyone who raced. The day brought back memories of the last time Alex raced at Marsh Tracks where he won the race after lapping the field on his own.

L09

With no entries for the women’s race, we waited for the 4th Cat Only Men’s race at 2pm. With 7 riders on the start line, Fibrax Wrexham Roads Club dominated the field with 4 riders competing one of which went on to take the win.

Wrexham rider, Wilf Goodfellow, hasn’t long got back from competing in the Alpe d’Huez Triathlon where he claimed 2nd in his age group. Coming to give criterium racing a go on a day license, Wilf wasted no time breaking away off the front and ended up lapping the field twice over.

L10

Behind Wilf it was a sprint finish between Kevin West of Hale Velo and Wrexham rider Alistair Brown. Alistair was nipped to the line by Kevin meaning Kevin took 2nd and Alistair took 3rd. The race ended with a sprint off the following bunch including Cardiac Athlete, Chris Bruney.

Criterium Racing Marsh Tracks

Criterium Racing Marsh Tracks

Both races were watched closely by Commissaire, David Robson, who I’d like to say a big thank you to for taking time out of his weekend to commissaire the event. A big thank you to Velotik Racing Team for making it possible to run the event by being the promoting team and helping marshall the event. Thank you to Marsh Tracks for being so welcoming and helping us open/lock up the track.

The Bike Bar rider, Alex Harvey, was also a big help on the day stopping to check on one of the riders who hit the deck. Alex also closed up the circuit afterwards. So a big thank you to Alex Harvey too!

I hope all the injured riders from the E123 race heal up quickly. I hope you’re at the end of your season, so you can come back fighting fit next year.

Running the event was certainly tough at times. I was expecting Ryan to head off to get changed any minute and get his bike out of the van, despite it being almost a full season now without him racing. We’ve got a different link to Marsh Tracks now where Ryan is anxiously waiting to see how his athletes perform in the races. I’m not sure how much we’ll raise for Cardiac Risk in the Young, but I think we successfully raised awareness of athletes attending a local CRY heart screening. That’s the most important thing to us. There’s a few British Cycling fees and track hire to sort first, then I’ll confirm what was raised.

The news of Alex Jones hit us both hard with Ryan’s news still being so raw. I didn’t know Alex personally, but he was someone Ryan had raced against for years. It sort of hit home how serious heart conditions can be when we heard about him. We’ll start planning next year, so we can make sure he’s never forgotten.

Any photos from the day can be found HERE

RESULTS

Alex Jones Memorial E123

1. Joseph Bowers – Team Chronomaster

2.Grant Bigham – Velo Runner

3. Jack Rees – Ribble Pro Cycling

4th Cat Only Race

1. Benjamin Goodfellow – Fibrax Wrexham Roads Club

2. Kevin West – Hale Velo

3. Alistair Brown – Fibrax Wrexham Roads Club

 

My C.R.Y. Heart Screening

My Free CRY Screening

Back when I was training for the London Marathon I said I’d booked onto a heart screening run by Cardiac Risk in the Young. Practice what you preach and all that. There was no symptoms suggesting I needed a heart scan, but Ryan wasn’t showing any symptoms either.

With the free heart screenings booking up so quickly I was lucky to get onto one in the Marches School, Oswestry. The closer the scan got the more it played on my mind. Being active became difficult because I wasn’t sure what results I’d be walking away their with.

Getting to the school with the C.R.Y. flags outside, I signed a few forms then waited to be called though. I’d be getting an E.C.G, but to keep it all simple what you get is essentially a heart scan checking your ticker is all ok. They noted down my height, weight and age and put these onto the forms I’d filled out previously. These forms asked things like if I’d experienced anything like chest pains and other medical history information.

All that was required for the heart scan was for me to lie on a bed with some sticky pads attached to me while the machine did its thing. Honestly, it lasted less than 5 minutes. The nurse takes the scan results away, which are then looked over by a Doctor. Another anxious wait then I was called in by the Doctor.

After asking me if I’d had a heart scan before and if I show any symptoms, to both of which I responded no, he said my results were clear.

It was definitely a ‘and breath’ moment, so everything is good and I can carry on as normal.

The screening I went to saw nearly 100 people and only one showed signs of something abnormal. So if you’re nervous (like I was) about booking on to a C.R.Y. screening, the chances are you’ll be absolutely fine, but even if the results do pick anything up C.R.Y. send all of the details to your G.P. so you can be referred for further tests. Testing runs for those between the ages of 14 and 35 years old.

SIGN UP TO A FREE HEART SCREENING HERE

Now the money to run these heart screenings has to come from somewhere, so to help C.R.Y. carry on their amazing work, Ryan and I are organising a day of Crit racing at Marsh Tracks in August. It would be great if you can come along and join in the fun. The more riders that race the more money will be raised! There’s even big points on offer in the National B E123 Men’s race! Racing and raising money for charity, what a great combo!?! What a perfect event to have a go at racing too. First time racers can enter the 4th Cat only race, and women can  have a go in the E1234 race!

Crit Races for C.R.Y

Have you been to a C.R.Y. heart screening? Share your experience below to encourage others to do the same!

#GirlsAtLlandegla

This idea has been circulating around my head for a while. The more I come across #GirlsAtMoelfre photos by chance on my phone, the more I want to organise another event…so that’s exactly what I’m doing.

I wanted to get everything in place before I announced it, but then #GirlsAtMoelfre developed more as an event the closer it got to the big weekend. I wanted to be 100% sure on what I wanted the event to be about. Obviously girls having fun riding their bikes, but I wanted it to have a bit more about it too.

After this video popped up in my timeline this weekend, I guess I could say it just clicked. (Excuse the language in the video mind if little eyes are reading this!)

I want it to be an event for all ages. Where we can all encourage each other to ride bikes in a relaxed environment.

We’ll split into groups and go and ride the trails at Llandegla. No set pace, just choose whatever trail you’re comfortable riding. If your a beginner you can come and have a go. Even if you’re a seasoned racer, why not come and just enjoy a laid back day on your bike? With it being on the 31st March, hopefully it’s before your season has kicked off!

Take advice from another Russel Howard video…and make memories. Maybe grab a few photos, but most importantly just enjoy it.

I had no idea Russell Howard was making this new TV programme, but right now I can’t respect him more!

So what happens after we ride bikes? We’ll go and have a good chinwag in the cafe at Llandegla (in the ‘Classroom’ if you’re wanting to be specific!). We’ll have a panel of female cyclists leading the discussion. Like Loose Women but for cycling…ha!

Since we’re all just riding around the trails, if you want to just come for a ride around the trails, then this will be completely free (after paying for parking at Llandegla that is!). As I’m hoping to get some big names to the talk, I’ll be selling tickets for it closer to the time once I get an idea for numbers. I expect tickets will be roughly £10 and all of that money will go to Help for Heroes. I’ll re-release the #GirlsAtLlandegla with the Help For Heroes Logo on it…I’m just waiting on the registration of the the event with them to go through!

Fancy coming along? Register for your free ticket by following this link -> #GirlsAtLlandegla