Author Archives: swwomensraceseries

New sponsor

We are pleased to announce that the series has a new sponsor for this year. The Bike Shed will be sponsoring the trophies for this year’s series winners.

About our sponsor:

Now with 5 locations throughout Devon, the Crediton Bike Shed was born out of MRS Motor Spares in 1994.
The acquisition of the Barnstaple Bike Shed widened our customer base significantly and enabled us to expand our range of products and services even further throughout the Devon area.
In 1998 we opened in Exeter with the purchase of Freewheel. In 1999 we moved to our large 2 story premises in Fore Street as The Bike Shed.

They supply many top end brands of bikes of all types and stock a good selection women’s bikes and kit.

All mechanics are Cytech trained and they offer the Specialized BG Fit bike fitting service in the Exeter and Barnstaple stores.

EXETER 01392 426191

CREDITON 01363 774773

BARNSTAPLE 01271 328628


Rankings from the Plymouth Corinthians TT on the 25th Feb

1st – Jenny Corser, Mid Devon CC / time: 33.17 / Overall: 10/ Vet 30: 10 / Vet40 : 10

2nd- Emma Cockcroft, Bianchi Dama UK / time: 33.58 / Overall: 9

3rd- Ruth Burrows, Mid Devon CC / time: 34.06 / Overall: 8

4th- Zoe Betteridge, / time 34.12 / Overall:7

5th- Hannah Colston, Tavistock Wheelers / time: 35.44 / Overall:6

6th- Neve Upton, Team On Form / time:36.34 / Overall: 5 / Junior: 10 / U23: 10

7th- Jess Duffy, Bianchi Dama UK / time: 36:36 / Overall: 4

8th- Jasmine Grey, Elite Velo / time 37:32 / Overall: 2 / Jun: 9 / U23: 9

9th- Alex Sheehan, Bianchi Dama UK / time: 38:01 / Overall: 2 / U23: 8

10th- Evie Lane, Certini / time:38.21 / Overall 1 / Jun: 8 / U23: 7

Provisional dates of the South West Women’s Race Series for 2017 + Local races (LR)

25-Feb Plymouth Corinthian S3/13S TT

4-Mar Bianchi Dama Women’s race day (LR)

12-Mar Cycle Sport South Hams Modbury RR

26-Mar Bristol South Road Race (LR)

01-Apr Somerset RC Circuit Race at Westpoint  (LR)

02-Apr Wheal Jane Circuit

14-Apr Castle Combe Circuit Race (LR)

16-Apr Tavistock Wheelers Brentor RR

22-Apr Mid Devon CC Colin Lewis GP Velopark Circuit

23-Apr Rob Wilmott Road Race (LR)

04-Jun St. Budeaux CC S46/16S TT

11-Jun Camel Valley CC S6/10 TT

25-Jun Taw Velo Eggesford RR

02-Jul Seaton Cycle Festival Chard Wheelers

16-Jul North Devon Wheelers S12R/25 TT

30th July EWCC Tour of Witheridge Moor Road Race

12-Aug Paignton Regatta Velopark Circuit

20-Aug The South and South West Region Road Race Championships

This is subject to race organisers being happy to be included and may be subject to slight changes as the season progresses but this is unlikely.

Smart Racing

Smart racing is safe racing! A few tips for our newer racers:

  • Try to hold your line. This means avoiding sudden movements, jerking to the side or harsh braking. Remember that everything you do affects the people directly behind and on either side of you. One bad move can have a domino effect and have consequences for many riders. Concentrate on what is happening around you so that you have time to react. Riding in an appropriate gear will also help you to keep your pedalling smooth.
  • Cornering is probably the trickiest part of racing. Keep a nice smooth line going into the corner, braking gently on the straight if you need to reduce speed. Try not to swing out dramatically unless the rider in front of you has taken a wide line too. Do not undercut or ‘divebomb’ on the inside when cornering, as riders will cut back in and you will most likely collide or have to take avoiding action. Try and corner on the drops to have more control and stability. Your bike will also be in a similar position to the others around it.
  • Be vocal. Call out hazards and directions if needed. Let people know where you are by saying “I’m on your right” or “on your left” for example. Call out dangerous riding if needed but try not to swear! Put your hand in the air, shout out and pull in to the left if you have a puncture so that others can pass you safely.
  • Sometimes, you might get dropped but keep riding! Most likely, you will not be the only person who gets dropped from the front group. Keep pushing on, try and join forces with other riders and form your own race within a race. Use it as a training session if nothing else. Try and keep close to the left hand side so that if you get lapped, the bunch can pass safely. Don’t give up, it takes a few races to get into the swing of things.

Most importantly, remember this is for fun. Yes, it’s a competition but speak to other racers – we don’t bite! 🙂

South West Road Race Championships

This year, the South West Road Race Championships will be taking place on Saturday 4th June on a new course in North Cornwall. The women’s race will consist of two laps of a 21 mile rolling loop. It has been organised by Scott Tomkinson from Lanhydrock Wheelers with support from the SW Road Race Working Group. Although this race will not be part of the series being it’s own standalone event, we would like to really encourage as many entries as possible from the women’s racing community! It is open to ALL racers in the South West so please do get your entries in and show your support for a regional championships for women. Without the racers, there is no race.

Enter online here: SW Road Race Championships Entry

Somerset RC Westpoint Race Report

For the next race in the SW series, the sun was shining and the wind was definitely blowing!

A last minute course change meant that we raced around the square circuit, rather than the alternative route across the middle. This gave us less corners to navigate, but more cross wind to battle with!

Straight from the off, Heidi Viles (SRC) and Alex Sheehan (Bikeshed-Bianchi) looked strong and kept the pace up. The group stayed together for the first few laps, with the riders trying to position themselves to get some shelter from the decent cross wind. The three Elite Velo girls were working together to try to spit the group with Hetty Summerhayes making bursts off the front but as there were a number of strong riders in the group, these attacks didn’t really come to anything.

As the race progressed, a few riders were dropped and the group got a little strung out as the stronger girls moved away. Heidi, Alex and Georgina Panchaud ( kept the race active with Hester Stembridge and Alice Staniford (Elite Velo) never far away.

As a newbie, I just wanted to stay sat in and watch the race unfold. Luckily, I was able to stick with the main group and when any attacks came I had enough “oomph” to react. With (I think) two laps to go, Heidi showed her strength and began to pull away and stayed away for a convincing win. Hester Stembridge took second and Alice Staniford chased me down for third. I was fourth and Nicki Carr (VC Equipe-Flix) was fifth after a strong ride back to the group in the middle of the race.

I’m not sure when it happened but there was an incident in the race and Jess Duffy (Bikeshed-Bianchi) had to take evasive action and came down heavily on the bottom corner. Thankfully she was able to walk away but with some painful looking road rash, a ripped skin suit, a poorly bike and what looked like a bad application of blusher! Fix quick Jess.

Somerset RC put on a great day of racing and the fact that they provided the sunshine, meant that my pasty white legs saw the sun for the first time this year… Just call me Casper!

Race report by Lucy Driver from Somerset RC

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Provisional Race Results:

1) Heidi Viles – Somerset RC

2) Hester Stembridge – Elite Velo

3) Alice Staniford – Elite Velo

4) Lucy Driver – Somerset RC

5) Nikki Carr – VC Equipe-Flix

6) Georgie Panchaud –

7) Lizzy Campbell – Bournemouth Jubilee Wheelers

8) Alex Sheehan – Bikeshed-Bianchi

9) Zoe Betteridge – North Devon Wheelers-Southfork

10) Hetty Summerhayes – Elite Velo

Many thanks to Lucy for the race report and Nara Ishikawa of Lanhydrock Wheelers for the photographs. It’s brilliant to see so many new faces getting involved!

Sadly, the Women’s GP on the 8th May has had to be rescheduled due to proposed roadworks on the course so the next race in the SW Women’s Race Series will be the Colin Lewis Grand Prix on the 15th May. Enter online here: Colin Lewis Grand Prix Entry


Four Firs Hilly TT Results

Fifteen brave women arrived at the Clyst St George village hall on a very wet and stormy morning to take part in the Exeter Wheelers Four Firs Sporting Time Trial. Many swapped time trial bikes for road bikes and left the deep section wheels at home just in case and warm ups were cut short or done on the road to avoid getting too cold. Luckily, the wind wasn’t too bad – it was just the hills to worry about! It’s more of a rolling course; fourteen miles long with only one big hill to make your legs groan but when you’re going full gas everything feels that little bit harder. The race of truth is a great way to test your fitness and push yourself out of your comfort zone and many first time TTers gave it a go on Sunday. Everyone got round in one piece and once around the course, we dived back into HQ to get a nice hot cup of tea and huddle together. Many thanks to all the hardy marshals and volunteers who helped direct the riders and keep us safe!

Natalie Grinczer

The eventual winner, speeding to victory! Photo by Ann Owens, more can found on FLickr.

1: Natalie Grinczer – Team WNT 37:52
2: Crystal Spearman- No Pinz 39:02
3: Emma Cockcroft – Bikeshed-Bianchi 39:20
4: Zoe Betteridge – North Devon Wheelers-Southfork 40:59
5: Bethan Stubbs – Bikeshed-Bianchi 41:47
6: Jess Duffy Bikeshed-Bianchi 41:52
7: Wiebke Rietz – 1st Chard Wheelers 43:37
8: Nicki Toomer – Exeter Wheelers 44:44
9: Alex Sheehan – Bikeshed-Bianchi 45:50
10: Jasmine Grey – Elite Velo Kalas RT 46:04 (junior)
11: Elena Bremer – Stavanger SK-Foreign 47:01
12: Lucy Monk – Exeter Wheelers 47:46 (junior)
13:Claire Guthrie – Exeter Wheelers 48:12
14: Nik Rorke – Exeter Wheelers 48:22
15: Jenny Bolsom – Revo Racing 51:19 (late penalty)

The next round of the SW Women’s Race Series will be the Somerset RC race at Westpoint on the 23rd April, enter here!