Pedal to the medal

Last week the second round of the BA(G) road cycling season took place at Athlone Barracks in Sennelager.

This round was the inter-unit race and was more about competing as part of a unit team rather than individually.

The event attracted 40 competitors from all over BFG. The competitors were a diverse mix of serving personnel, and British and German civilians, which made for a great competitive event.

The competition started off with some administration and checking kit, before a safety briefing and some practice laps of the course for everyone to learn the route and warm up.

The lap was over 1 kilometre in length and consisted of long straights along with several tight corners; over the course of the race the riders continually lapped the route for a period of 40 minutes.

After the 40 minutes, the gun fired as the race leader crossed the line signalling the last three laps; from then on it was a sprint to the finish.

The entire field was made up of people with a wide range of experience levels, from people taking part in their first race, to seasoned veterans who had been taking part in the sport for years.

As the race reached the half way point there were some clear front runners as Maj Smith of 1 PWRR, Cpl Carr from Bielefeld, SSgt Ward of 26 Regt RA and SSgt Llewellyn from Normandy Barracks made up the top four and were almost clear of any other challengers.

As the gun was fired to signal the final three sprint laps the pace of the competitors was unbelievable, especially considering the heat of the day was well over the 30 degree mark and they had been cycling non-stop for 40 minutes.

Staying in the lead from the mid-way point and crossing the finish line first was Maj Smith, closely followed by Cpl Carr in second place and SSgt Llewellyn managed to just pip SSgt Ward to the line.

After the race BA(G) Road Cycling Chairman Capt Rick Newman said: “People turn up of all abilities; novice to expert – some people have been coming for years. We have people of all different fitness levels take part and enjoy it, a sport for everyone.

“It’s appealing because of the different aspects of the sport, it’s not just about fitness and physicality. There is a real technical side to it as well in the way you ride. Also the mechanical side of the sport appeals to people, knowing your equipment and maintaining it, along with how to get the best out of it is a key part of the sport.”

The next round takes place in Hohne on July 12-14. Round three will take place over three days and will consist of five races of different disciplines.

If you would like more information or would like to take part contact SSgt Mike Llewellyn on LLPHealthcare-PAD-PRRT-MilERI@mod.uk Alternatively contact him on 05251 101 020

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