Cycling Club Isle of Man put in a solid performance at the third and final round of the Proper Northern Elite Road Race Series in Oakenclough at the weekend with James Harrison and Corrin Leeming both finishing inside the top 20.
The race was won from a breakaway with Harrison leading the sprint home in the peloton behind to take 18th place with Leeming in 20th.
Jamie Fletcher, who recently took the team’s first victory, was not far behind the pair and took 26th place on what was a tough day out for all.
It was a challenging day of racing in Oakenclough, just north of Preston, with several steep climbs littering the 110-kilometre course.
The race was fast right from the go and Cycling Club Isle of Man was in the mix early on with both Leeming and Harrison making it into an early breakaway. Leeming and Harrison, along with their breakaway companions, slowly opened up an advantage of 40 seconds over the chasing peloton.
Unfortunately, their chances of making the move stick were scuppered when the group became stuck behind a slow-moving car. A decision by the race commissaire to put the leaders under neutralised conditions, but not do the same for the peloton, meant the race regrouped.
It was back to square one and attacks continued to jump off the front of the main group. The resulting pace saw several riders drop out the back, thinning out the bunch.
A breakaway did eventually go clear, but unfortunately, there were no Cycling Club Isle of Man riders in the move. The team did not give up and kept working to bring the escape group back.
In the end, the breakaway stayed clear with Ben Grainger of the Zappi Racing Team taking the win.
Harrison led the bunch home a short while later with Leeming and Fletcher close behind. It was a solid ride from the entire team that could have been much more without the issues early in the race.