JUST a few years ago the Tyanee course, probably the most challenging in the Bann Valley calendar was attracting fewer than 20 riders, on Tuesday 31st June forty seven riders took part in a very competitive race.
The four large groups were handicapped with 6 minutes for the first group while 3 minutes covered the remaining three groups. This proved to be well judged as the three chase groups merged over the first three laps with the race coming together at the start of the last lap.
As the colourful group of almost 50 riders snaked their way through Fallahogey for the last time the officials and spectators made their way to the finish line on the Kilrea road expecting to see a bunch sprint for the line. However as the race appeared, it became clear that a number of riders had broken clear by a few metres.
At the line it was Alastair Steele SIS.COM who proved the stronger to take his first victory at a Bann Valley race for some time. Second and third places were taken by East Tyrone riders Nevin Smyth and Stephen Hutchinson with Tony McPeake the first of the home club rider’s home in fourth place.
The previous Tuesday 24th May the windy weather had the effect of reducing the numbers taking part in the AWT RACING 10 mile TT on the Kilrea Road. The weather also had an effect on the times recorded, with the leading contenders down by almost a minute on the previous few weeks. The winner on the night was Stephen Workman BRC who finished in a time of 23.15, this after he had to make a dash back to his home having forgotten his shoes, as the time keeper allowed Stephen to move to the bottom of the start sheet he had only 5 minutes warm up before his run. Second spot was taken by Martin Tohill Spires CC 8 seconds behind Workman with a time of 23.23, just ahead of East Tyrone’s David Barton who posted a time of 23 minutes 26 seconds.