Ballymoney Cycling Club’s Steven McAllister added his name to the list of winners of the famous Bann Valley Classic road race, held annually on the tough Clady/Inisrush circuit.
Steven was joined by his BCC team mates Ryan Patton, former winner of the Kelly Roche Road Race in Dublin and making a return to racing after a few years’ break, Jason Taggart, Phil Smith, who was back from representing Ballymoney CC at the Red Hand trophy on Saturday, first timers to racing Jack Owens, Ryan Fenton and club hard man Wayne Stevens.
McAllister who was given the go ahead to race only hours before the start by his coach Stephen Gallagher,along with a lot of hard work done by former pro cyclist now physio Tim Cassidy to try and patch up his badly bruised and battered body following a high-speed crash at the Ben McKenna Memorial race in Balbriggan.
So severe were his injuries that he was forced to withdraw from the Tour of the North last weekend.
But having won the “B” race at Bann Valley in 2012 he wanted to return and add the “A” race to his palmares and as a result he is now upgraded by Cycling Ireland to A1 status.
From a field of 80 riders the Ballymoney man broke clear with five others in the second of seven laps and they forged a gap that was over two minutes at the line from the rest of the field. This breakaway group worked hard together and as they lined up for the sprint it was the Ballymoney rider who proved the strongest winning from Coleraine rider Nigel Quigley and third-placed TVR rider Davy McKnight. Jason Taggart and Phil Smith both BCC Racing Team riders both finished comfortably in the main bunch.
In the “B” race Ryan Fenton finished in the top 12 places in his first ever race, giving great hope of things to come fromthis moto cross rider turned bikey. Young junior rider Jack Owens got caught out with twolaps to go and found it hard to get back on terms after being distanced from the group coming back into the start and finish.
Comfortable in the bunch was Ryan Patton who is just riding back into form after a few years’ break. Wayne Stevens suffered an unavoidable mechanical problem and was forced to withdraw despite getting back into racing again following an illness.
All round it was a very succesful day for the Ballymoney club and their riders with the youth team riding next weekend at Drogheda in the three-stage event held there. A full report will be in next week’s paper.
Stuart Laverty wins the Glenstall Road Race
The future of cycling and Ballymoney Cycling Club is being built on the youth and the development of young talent. Taking this role by the horns is former Northern Ireland junior time trial and road race champion Alastair Henry. Alastair is taking a very active approach to helping young riders in the club like Stuart Laverty, Ryan Orr, Jack Owens, Chris Surgeoner, Ellen McAree, Mathieu Patton, Aoife Cameron Mitchell, Luke McAvoy and Adam McMaster. The success and the style was showing on Wednesday night when Ballymoney CC held their first road race of the season at Balnamore. Thirty riders were set off in five groups and it was not long before eventual winner the classy under 16 rider Stuart Laverty and team mate Ryan Orr set about keeping the rest of the field at bay for the 25 miles.
The race was well supported by other local clubs and Dunloy’s Philip McGuigan got third from BCC’s Ryan Patton and Aaron Dickie.
Results for the Glenstall Road Race:
1st Stuart Laverty BCC Racing Team
2nd Ryan Orr BCCRT
3rd P. McGuigan Dunloy CC
4th Ryan Patton BCCRT
5th Aaron Dickie BCC
6th Ryan Fenton BCCRT
7th Wayne Stevens BCCRT
8th Neville Patton BCCRT
9th Uel Cunningham Michelin CC
10th Jonny Doey Spires CC.
The complete results list can be seen on the club website, wwwballymoneycyclingclub.com
The Lungbuster 5 mile TT
This was the first time trial of the 2012 club season for Ballymoney Cycling Club, as usual it was well supported and saw the best time of the evening being done by Ryan Patton (BCCRT) in a time of 11.21.
Youth rider Stuart Laverty Under16 had a time of 12.13, Mathieu Patton Under 12 was 17.15, Chris Surgeoner 14.01, Ellen McAree Under14 18.19 and Jack Owens 14.22.
Overall winner was Dominic Drum from Ballycastle riding for Bann Wheelers in a time of 11.11.
1st Dominic Drum (BWCC) 11.11
2nd Ryan Patton (BCCRT) 11.21
3rd Liam O’Connor (BVCC) 11.23
4th Wayne Stevens (BCCRT) 11.24
5th Jerome McKendry (DTRT) 11.37
Full results list on the club website at wwwballymoneycyclingclub.com
The fun/leisure run “Summer Sunday Cycling” leaves from the Grease Pit on Sunday mornings at 10.30am. Last Sunday saw 16 riders of all abilities leaving the town to do 25/30 miles at a pace that suited everyone. BCC had experienced riders accompanying the group to give advice and tips when needed. Things like gearing, where to sit behind another rider in the wind as well as making sure everyone got back to the town safely. Anyone interested in getting out for a healthy spin should contact Marshall Craig on FaceBook or mobile 07738241969.
Ballymoney Cycling Club have bikes available to those in the community who would like to try it and see if they like it scheme. Again ask Marshall for details. There are also tandems available to be used also.
This Wednesday night BCC will hold a 10 mile TT on the Ballybogey Rd at 7pm sharp.
Everyone is invited to come along and try their fitness out against the clock in this individual time trial.