More than 100 visiting riders battled against a similar number of locals in the Isle of Man Youth and Junior Tour last weekend.
Sponsored once again by Sleepwell Hotels, conditions were mixed for the three-day event that started in perfect conditions with a short prologue time trial on Loch Promenade last Friday evening.
The junior men’s class was won by Noah Hobbs of Tekkerz CC in a combined time of 3hr 37min 19sec for the time trial, a wet road race at Ellerslie on Saturday afternoon and a final road race in the north of the island on Sunday.
This involved six laps of a closed roads course in the Summerhill area, followed by a break off to Sandygate and Sulby crossroads with a further rolling road closure for the ride up Sulby valley and the final tough Tholt-y-Will climb to the finish some way beyond the reservoir entrance.
Utmost Isle of Man Junior Cycling Team’s Zac Walker forced the pace every lap of the circuit, if there had been a prize for the most aggressive rider in the race he would have got it.
He ultimately finished the race in fifth spot to grab third overall in the Junior Tour behind runner-up (and final stage winner) Joshua Tarling of Wales Racing Academy.
Walker was only 21 seconds off the top spot, receiving the Denham Eke trophy for the best Isle of Man rider of the tour.
Next local on GC was Tyler Annis in 10th spot at 2m 15s, followed by fellow Utmost IoM team members Callum Salisbury in 18th at 4.19, Niall Colquitt 27th at 10.19 and James Scott 37th at 25.01.
Utmost IoM won the junior team prize against top class opposition, as there were composite teams of the best riders.
The visiting junior riders absolutely loved Tholt-y-Will, some imagining they were in the Tour de France!
The younger age groups did not experience the thrill (and pain) of the big climb as they were restricted to the Summerhill course, where Chief Minister Alf Cannan flagged some of the riders away and then waved the chequered flag as they crossed the finish line close to his home.
Dylan Sage (Evolution Racing Academy) won Youth Boys A title in a combined time of 1hr 38m 43s, with Oscar Gaylor (Team RL360) the best local in 15th at 37s, from team-mates Cian Howard and Ivan Sorby in 21st and 22nd respectively. The latter pair averaged 22mph for the duration of Saturday’s road race at Ellerslie.
The Youth A Girls title went to Cat Ferguson (Shibden-Storey) with Peel’s Ruby Oakes (JRC Interflon RT) eighth at 1m 37s, Nicola Quaye (Team RL360) 11th at 3.38, and Sophie Smith (Team RL360) 16th at 6.09.
Alec Sorby was the best local in the Youth B Boys, finishing seventh overall with fellow RL360 rider Zach Jones 22nd.
In the girls category, Abi Clayton was 11th and Lily-Ann Scott 15th.
Daniel Minay of East Baldwin was the home star in Youth C, winning the boys’ category in fine style by a margin of six seconds from Zach Hutchinson of Clifton CC. Thomas Hutchinson and Bernat Munoz-Fite were 13th and 14th.
Grace Robinson and Florence Heselton of Team RL360 were the leading locals in Youth C Girls, 10th and 11th.
Tommy Bass was in the mix in Youth D Boys throughout, finishing third overall, 19s behind winner Cobey Stewart of Stepping Stanes YCC. Cameron Eyres was fifth, Oliver Kennington sixth and Corrie Brogan seventh to secure the team prize.
Poppy Clayton won category D Girls by a margin of 11s from Eden Thomson of Deeside Thistle CC, with RL360 locals Bella Quaye third, Tara Nelson fifth and Millie Ward sixth to secure the team prize.
More home success followed in Youth E (for under-eights) with Oliver Hutchinson winning the boys from Henry Quaye and Isla Kennington the girls.