CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold

DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK win GC and all three stages at the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold

What’s better than winning the GC at a stage race? Coming first and second in GC and winning all the stages of course! The DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK team had an impressive weekend’s racing at the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold. This race is one of the few National B stage races in the UK, so was guaranteed a strong field.

Tammy Miller on her way to winning the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold
Tammy Miller on her way to winning the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold. Photo Emma Wilcock

Organising the race are the Yomp Bonk Crew, a band of young riders who have solved the problem of not enough road races in the UK. How did they do that? By running their own road races, crits, winter and summer leagues; it’s an impressive list. The CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold was run with help from the University of Nottingham CC.

The DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK team have had a busy season both here and abroad. Recently the riders have just ridden the Ford Ride London Classique and the Tour of Britain. The five riders for this race were; Sian Botteley, Robyn Clay, Charlotte Hodgkins-Byrne, Tamsin Miller and Sannah Zaman. This was Clay’s first race back after suffering multiple injuries from a horrible crash at the Cyclis Classic in Belgium, at the beginning of May. The former Lincoln Grand Prix winner was obviously back to form with her stage win.

Clay wasn’t the only rider on form in the team though, as both Hodgkins-Byrne and Miller have had victories this year. Tamsin won the Oakenclough road race, while Charlotte took the Dave Peck Memorial British Cup Race.

Lucy Lee in action at the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold
Lucy Lee in action at the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold

CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold

Stage One

The CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold is a two day, three stage race, with separate women’s and open races. Stage one was an individual time-trial around the villages of Willoughby-on-the-Wolds and Widmerpool. Stages one and two would both be ridden on the Saturday.

The short, 7Km course was to be tackled by riders on standard road bikes; no TT specific equipment allowed. With only two left turns to slow them down, the course was described as a flat-out power test. Tamsin Miller powered around the course to finish with a time of 9’31”. That was 8 seconds ahead of second placed Lucy Harris of Pro-Noctis – 200º Coffee – Hargreaves Contracting Ltd.

Sannah Zaman and Robyn Clay on day two of the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold
Sannah Zaman and Robyn Clay on day two of the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold

Stage Two

With the morning’s TT out of the way, the riders had a few hours to rest before starting Stage Two. This would use the same course as the morning, with rider’s having to complete 8.5 laps; 72Km. The day started sunny and warm, but the riders would have to deal with a nagging head-wind on the finishing straight.

DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK policed the front of the peloton throughout the day as riders attacked, trying to take the GC. Floren Scrafton of FTP-Fulfil The Potential-Racing was particularly aggressive, attacking multiple times. Scrafton launched her final attack on the penultimate lap, but was brought back as the heavens opened. After the bunch reeled her back in the sun reappeared and the sprint opened up. Clay pulled away to take DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK’s second victory of the day. In a display of team strength, the team got four of their five riders into the top ten on stage two.

Clay takes stage 2 of the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold. Courtesy of YompBonkCrew

Stage Three

The final stage of the CAMS Ronde van Wymeswold was run off on a 15.2Km course. The riders would tackle it 5.5 times for a total race distance of 80Km. The course was described as “rolling” with two short kickers to test the riders. Thankfully the rain stayed away and riders got to race under sunnier conditions.

Robyn Clay (on the right in green) won stage one and the points classification

With two stage wins and the GC in their hands, DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK would have been forgiven to play a watching role. And for the first three laps they did, as riders attacked from the gun, keen to wrest a victory away from the team. With two laps to go and the bunch recovering from a flurry of attacks on the previous laps, the team returned to the front again.

Spectators would have expected them to remain on overwatch, but the team had other ideas. Charlotte Hodgkins-Byrne attacked out of the bunch, with Katherine Sheridan chasing, The duo worked together gaining a 40 second lead within two kilometres. Their lead expanded to 1’30” at the most, but was down to one minute with half a lap left. Charlotte played clever and sat on Sheridan’s wheel, before launching the race-winning attack with a kilometre to go.

An exhausted Hodgkins-Byrne takes the final stage

Meanwhile back in the bunch, her team was pulling, trying to get a 1-2 in the GC. They not only grabbed first and second place in the GC, but Clay took the bunch sprint for third and the points classification. I think that would count as a successful weekend’s racing!

Quotes from the team.

Chralotte Hodgkins-Byrne

We spoke to Charlotte after the race, here’s what she said; “the win on stage 3 was super, I’d had a bit of a rubbish TT and was annoyed at myself about it, so was pleased to get a solid race in on the Sunday. It was a great combination of team tactics and physicality to facilitate a win, which definitely made it all the more enjoyable!”

She went on to say; the weekend was a brilliant way for the team to explore different strategies and race plans across the stages, which I think has left us in pretty good spirits and with real trust in each others’ abilities – plus it was a very fun weekend! We’ve got a good mix of UK (with the National road and crit series) and UCI races coming up, so I’m really excited to get stuck into those. I’m really lucky that we have a varied calendar, so there’s always lots to look forward to and plenty to learn from!”

Robyn Clay

We also spoke to Robyn about her race and plans for the rest of the season. First off she said that it felt really nice to get a win in my first race back after the crash.” That’s an understatement! She did say that she “wasn’t sure where my form was at. So to see I haven’t lost quite as much as I thought is great. I am doing the National Crit Champs and National Road Champs this week, so I’m hoping to have good legs there, but even after the performance this weekend, I’m still unsure how I’ll fare. But it’ll be great training and good fun regardless!”

When we asked what the team spirit was like she said; “The team was in great spirits after this weekend as you can imagine. Everyone played a role in each achievement we had during the race, so although you may have just seen a handful of us on the podium, it was the whole team that made it happen.

Robyn’s next races after the Nationals are the Otley and Ilkley crits. She’ll follow those with the Volta a Portugal Feminina in September. She says the plan is not to target “anything in particular, but of course hoping to get some more results before the end of the season and to get my form back to where it was prior to the crash.” We wish Robyn all the best for the rest of the season and if she keeps on riding like this there’s bound to be more trips to the podium.

Team bikes

The DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK team are sponsored by Handsling Bikes and ride their UCI approved A1R0evo frame. Handsling are a UK brand based in Hampshire and have been producing high-end carbon frames for road, track and cyclo-cross since 2015.

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