STRATFORD Cycling Club’s awards night at the Grosvenor Hotel saw new chairman Keith Walton welcome members, guests and multi-national time trial champion Matt Clinton as the guest speaker for the night.
Keith gave a big welcome to club president and founder member Jim Ridler and informed everyone of Jim’s exploits having ridden for Great Britain in the Milk Race and the Tour of Switzerland in the 1960s.
Keith recalled how in 1985 he took on his first official position within the club when there were only a dozen members.
Now, with more than 200 members including 70 youngsters who receive coaching each week, the club has become the envy of many throughout the Midlands despite the limited off-road resources it possesses.
The club organises five club runs a week and caters for most forms of cycling.
Keith went on to thank all the race organisers, timekeepers and members who had put in the hard work over the season, which saw the club promote seven open events, some of which were national.
Matt then handed out the awards before talking about his cycling career followed by a question and answer session to finish.
Louise Green was quite rightly given the Clubman of the Year award.
Other senior award winners included: Time Trial Series – Ian Hemming, Martin Millington, Mick Stallard, John Johnson, Alison Bagnall, Peter Ward, Trevor Acreman.
Road Race points – Tony Owen, Keith Walton.
Hill Climb champion – Alex Macrae.
Most Improved riders – Matt Peirce, Caroline Skelton, Baden Green.
The following week’s junior awards featured more than 100 youngsters and it was fantastic to see five, six and seven-year-olds full of smiles and speechless when receiving their accolades.
Louise Green, who drives the junior section and coaches, was joined by John Johnson and Tom Heenan in making the presentations and highlighted the achievements of Jess O’Riley who has joined David Hird in the West Midlands School of Racing squad.
As part of this, the duo receive intensive training and Jess now has her own one-to-one coach. David, meanwhile, has this year competed in events as far away as Newcastle, the Isle of Man and Plymouth.
As far as consistent results are concerned, the under 12 group of Spencer Corder, Lewis Tinsley and Alex Burden have set the standard to beat with Spencer having won 14 events in circuit racing and cyclo-cross this year.
Lewis has won and regularly finishes immediately after Spencer. In the same races, Alex has followed his two team-mates home on many occasions but set his sights on the Mallory Park evening races over 18 weeks in which he was overall champion with multiple victories.
Baden Green won the National Circuit Time Trial Championship for his age group and is a much-improved rider this year.
Tamsin Moss was crowned West Midlands Cyclo-Cross champion having won the under six championship earlier in the year and she is currently second in the under eight series.
Joe Gregg was given the Tom Heenan Award as the club’s junior who has shown the most improvement.
See this week’s Observer for the full junior award list and more pictures.