By John Leitch
Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 21:36

That was something new yesterday…. I mean staging two Raiders’ events on the same day….. first up was at Canon at 12noon for the younger ages followed by a green group (for our slightly older riders) at Leigh at 3pm.

At Canon, the lower two levels were occupied by coach Peter Loader’s group while I moved to higher grounds with the youngest riders.

Up the mountain, we kicked off with a cycling version of the party game ‘ musical chairs’ followed by an exercise involving two teams competing, as matched pairs, for ‘the last parking space’…. a good one to do again next time as riding round in a small circle round a cone, then round another, taxed several riders’ cornering skills.

But then what a noise….. the dogs chasing the rabbits.

Basically it involves two groups starting half a lap apart and riding as fast as possible to catch the other group, or not be caught by the other group. I don’t think we’ve had such a noisy lot… some were barking mad. The rabbits were much quieter so perhaps we should rebrand them as parrots, or owls, or hens, or elephants…. suggestions on a postcard please.

If you’ve joined our Raiders’ Facebook page, you’ll see a short video of an all-in action exercise which involved riders only starting their short race to the line once they were tagged by a parent who had to run from further behind them.

Final race – four laps handicap for younger ages in the younger group.

1 Holly Bishop
2 Henry Bryant
3 Molly Mirfenderesky

Final race – five laps for older ages in the younger group.

1 Henry Bryant
2 Ollie Bradford
3 Blake Eggleton

The observant may notice that one rider did a total of nine laps as he was in both races.

Holly’s mum persuaded me that she needed a good head-start, being younger than the rest, and that was fine except that Holly proved to be rather nimble and whizzy for her age and so she was never caught.

That said, Henry came from the back of the race, rode through the field, and was a close second…. so I asked if he was up for more and he said ‘yes’. The second race was all-in from the start, just one whistle, and Henry took the honours, reaching the finish line first.

I found myself all at sea when it came to names…. I’m thinking that I’ll bring stickers next time so I get to know who the riders are.