Keen contest in Mountain Bike RaceRIDING HIGH: Randy “Ells Man” Licorish, on his way to victory in the open men’s cross country race. (Shaka Mayers)
By Randy Bennett | Sun, July 01, 2012 - 12:03 AM
THERE WERE HILLS, SPILLS and load of thrills.
The rough, rugged terrain of Lancaster, St James was the site of the Royal Westmoreland’s 4X Four-cross Mountain Bike Race yesterday.
Just over 20 riders saddled up for the inaugural event, which also included two overseas participants in Martinique’s David Vilarsin and Trinidad and Tobago’s Maria Shakera Gooding, the lone female.
Riders competed in three categories; cross country, time-trials and four cross. The competition included two junior divisions (9-10 and 13-14), with the other division being open to people from 18 years of age.
Liam Bain, riding in the 9-10 category, won the cross country event, while Joshua Parris was victorious in the 13-14 age group, with Kyro Gibling placing second.
In the feature race, the open men’s cross country, there was a lot of excitement with Romano Beckles and Randy “Ells Man” Licorish locked in an engrossing battle for first place.
However, after trailing Beckles for the first three and a half laps of the five-lap race, Licorish overtook his tiring rival, before sprinting home a clear winner.
Ross Callender, better known for his performances in cycling circles, then nipped Vilarsin in a sprint to the finish to cop third position. Gooding finished sixth.
In an interview with SUN SPORT, event organizer Derrick Frederick said the main focus was to regenerate interest in the sport of mountain bike racing.
He said the plan was for a monthly event and that so far he was satisfied with the level of interest shown by the riders.
“Honestly, I would have liked to see some more youngsters come out, but I am still quite pleased at the turnout. I know that the kids love the sport, but they just seem to get a bit shy when there is a competition.
“But I know that once the word gets out and it spreads that we will be seeing a lot more riders when we host our next event,” he added.
Frederick disclosed that he was also looking to restart a Mountain Bike Association of Barbados, once enough interest was generated.
Ian Putley, construction director at Royal Westmoreland, said with the race being the first of its kind here, he was pleased to be associated with it, and encouraged all riders to take part in any future events.
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