Eight Welwyn Wheelers youth riders plus two of the clubs senior coaches Francis Gallagher and Richard Maynard were in the Netherlands for the week long European Junior Youth Tour is Assen. Over 750 riders had entered for this prestigious event with riders from 23 countries, including Australia, South Africa and the whole of Europe, taking part. A significant number of top class national champions were there for six days of racing with massive fields on closed roads for the various age groups.
Star rider for the Wheelers was Joe Kiely who was in impressive form throughout the 6 days of racing in a field of 70 riders.
He was always up with the leaders in each race but his best race of the week was the famous Classica. He was in the breakaway group as they approached the finish where he attacked with 500m to the line and held on to win the race. In the final overall classification Joe was second place – a suprb performance in a top class field of riders
Oli Stockwell, Joe Bennett and Archie Peet were in the 140 strong Nieulingen category – they worked well together and were in the top quarter of the results in the various events. In the final clasification Oli was 12th, Joe 37th and Archie 79th having lost a large amount of time in one race where the strong breeze split the race into a number of groups.
Euan Woodliffe was on good from in his age band taking two well earned second places in sprint finishes in the category 6 event of 80 riders–a mechanical gear problem in one race as they approached the finish cost him a number of places but he finished in 7th place overall which was a great result.
The Wheelers ‘team’ of riders, parents , coaches and helpers were delighted with the weeks activities and the racing results. Francis and Richard put in a tremendous amount of work as team managers dealing with pre-race briefings on courses and tactics plus motivating the riders to have a successful week.
Josie Griffin (U16 & ODA) took part in the National Youth track champs at Newport last week. She was 5th in the Scratch race, 8th in the Points and around mid-field in the Individual Pursuit. Her highlight though was a silver in the Madison while being partnered with CC Ashwells Sophie Lewis (also ODA) behind the pairing of Elynor (Team Backstedt-Hotchillee) and Zoe Backstedt (Maindy Flyers Youth CC).