A PHENOMENAL start to the road racing season was achieved by St Ives CC with an unprecedented two wins from two races - for Mark Thompson and Jamie Caldwell respectively - in the same weekend.

A PHENOMENAL start to the road racing season was achieved by St Ives CC with an unprecedented two wins from two races - for Mark Thompson and Jamie Caldwell respectively - in the same weekend.

Thompson’s win came in the NCRA Handicap race, held over 30 miles. In this race the field is handicapped, with the slowest riders setting off eight minutes before the fastest group and approximately eight riders in each group.

After a hard first lap, the fastest group caught the remaining handicapped groups until the whole of the field was together with about 5 km to go.

A terrific cavalry charge ensued as riders clamoured for the line on a downhill hitting incredible speed, with Thompson timing his attack perfectly to take the win ahead of team mate Andy Wylde in fifth.

But the biggest win for the club was still yet to come in the Crest Spring Road Race from a spirited long break away ride by Caldwell.

The Crest is the first big Regional A race of the season and is eagerly anticipated, held over 70 unrelenting miles, with a field of mostly top level racers and a fearsome hill top finish.

Lee Desborough finished a creditable 11th and Paul Fielding was 12th.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, the club’s cyclists took to the roads for the annual 100-mile Challenge Ride.

Event organiser Gary Stevens concocted a difficult course, taking in the counties of Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Essex, meandering its way to find as many hills as possible.

The first riders set off at 8am, and it was the racing team, led by ex-professional Ian Cammish, who were first back at 2pm.

The ladies group were next home and, led by Caroline Smurthwaite, they out-witted many of their male club mates to finish in a time of 6.50hrs.

Next home was a large contingent containing 20 riders at 3:38pm, closely followed by a small group led by Martin Magnago.

In total the cycling club raised over £200 for Road Peace.