redbull timelaps 2018
Monday 29th October 2018
Apparently, it was the coldest October night in a decade. Whilst we were recovering from our first outing as a Cat4 racer at home with the heating on with a fresh cuppa, 800 or so nutters were battling that freezing wind and rain in Windsor Park all for the glory of Timelaps. The unique thing we found last year was the vast mixture of teams all with different goals; some were there purely for the win, others had dressed up in fluorescent gear and taking the mick! Dirty Wknd returned but this time with an army of teams and there was a certain World Tour rider giving it a go too. But the credit must to go to every rider who competed, we really didn't envy you this year he says whilst the heating is on blast wearing thermal socks...!
Eight hundred riders raced against the clock over a grueling 25 hours in Great Windsor Park as the teams battled the course, their immense fatigue and the cold weather in a bid to be crowned the 2018 champions of Red Bull Timelaps. Two hundred teams, each made up of four riders, again pushed themselves to their physical and mental limits by tackling the 6.6km closed circuit for 25 punishing hours. Taking place within the iconic Windsor Great Park the event is the world’s longest one-day road cycling race.
As the temperatures dropped overnight, there was extra emphasis on the time period between 2 am and 3 am when the clocks go back. Fittingly called the 'Power Hour', teams tactically kept riders fresh, and those on the course took full advantage of a new shortened course in which laps over the 60 minutes counted double. The teams nominated their best rider to tackle the shorter course.
Team VeloElite U25 from Northamptonshire, who were overall winners in 2017 under the name Wellingborough Cycles, were once again crowned champions of Red Bull Timelaps. They finished with an astonishing 146 laps after 25 hours of racing. A strong Power Hour ride from team member Jordan Peacock saw him rack up eight laps, which proved critical to wrapping up the win. The team was comprised of Jack Patmore, James Woodfield, Jordan Peacock and Ollie Bates. The podiums were completed by Velo Elite and Team Walrus.
Jack Patmore, member of the victorious VeloElite U25 in the men’s category said: “It was definitely tough, absolutely freezing and the wind really picked up throughout the night. The weather this year really added in an extra factor to what is an already very hard event. This year we had a second Velo Elite team which helped with tactics as we could pair up out on course. With two hours to go, we attacked and left everyone behind ”
Specialized Women's team were the overall winners in the female race, they dominated the field early on and won with 118 laps, two more than Spokes BPC Racing who finished in 2nd place. It was Specialized Women's team first time at the event and they completed six Power Hour laps, with the fastest time of 7:43. Rebecca Hair from Specialized Women's team, winner of the women’s category, said: “We found we were leading half-way through, we dropped off a little bit but clawed it back. I just did the last lap and I’m in bits. Nat, who is our strongest rider, smashed the Power Hour which really helped us”.
The mixed race was won by The 5th Floor team, who clocked 135 laps and eight during the Power Hour. The team was comprised of Tom Griffiths, Javier Romartinez, Jack Driver and Emma Bentley, finished ahead of Velo-ciraptors who finished the race with 132 laps. Tom Griffiths from The 5th Floor team: “It was long and chilly, but we all stuck together and pushed through. It's the first time we have all worked together as a team, so we’re really proud. Our club won the women’s race, so next year we need to win the men’s and we have a clean sweep.”
Also taking part was Team Katusha–Alpecin rider and time trial specialist Alex Dowsett who completed the fasted lap of 8:42:03, he added: “It's the hardest amount of fun you can have on a bike. It was a lot of fun, but really tough at times. This is more than just racing, the community, a whole other world of cycling that I don’t get to be a part of that often, so I’ve really enjoyed being down here.”
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