A National Championship in Olympic year is always likely to be keenly fought, with a London Olympics it becomes a guaranteed certainty.
British Cycling Yorkshire Region again steps up to the mark to organise its third National Road Race Championships, the last occasion in 2008 helping to prepare the ground for the Beijing Olympics. Before that their 2005 Championship marked the start of the annual promotion of the Ryedale Grand Prix, which in between Championships has featured as a round of British Cycling’s Premier Calendar Series.
The traditional host for the event has been the stately home Duncombe Park, in the popular North Yorkshire market town of Helmsley. This year however sees a change of venue and circuits with a move just down the road to Ampleforth. Our host for 2012 will be Ampleforth Abbey and College where riders of past editions of the Ryedale will be familiar with the College sports centre that has been the events race HQ since 2005. Regulars for our Ryedale Rumble Sportive will know of the extended grounds beyond the Sports Centre that play out the closing miles of this tough sportive.
The Championship will take the same long drag up the finish in front of the magnificent Benedictine Abbey. It will also provide an ideal vantage point for spectators with the race passing through the grounds with each lap. Where clustered around the finish will be an event village featuring trade stands and the opportunity for spectators to take part in a Watt bike challenge.
The Women’s Elite and Under 23 Championship is first to take to the roads at 9.15am with 7 laps of a “difficult” 9.5 mile circuit and the possibility of a return match between a select group of World class riders. The Men take their turn at 1.45pm with their Elite and Under 23 Championship. This begins with 3 laps of an 18.9 mile circuit, that take the riders by the ruins of Byland Abbey, the scenic villages of Coxwold, Oulston, Crayke and Slingsby before climbing to Yearsley where spectators are sure to gather. The race then shifts to 6 laps of the same circuit used by the Women for a total of 113.7 miles, it’s going to be tough, it’ll be tense; it’ll be un-miss able.
The Men’s race will once again incorporate the annual memorial to Peter Longbottom the International rider from nearby Malton.
2011 National Champs Video:
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