The 21-22 Cycling season came to a thrilling finale with the Criterium Championships sponsored by Le Col at Fife Cycle Park. The day started with a coaching session in the morning for beginner student cyclists taking their first steps into racing. The session was made possible thanks to funding from Scottish Cycling allowing students to participate at no additional cost. There was strong turnout with first time races alongside seasoned veterans learning from coach Anna Fairweather as they both looked to sharpen their skills heading into day’s racing.
Students before the coaching session
The Men’s Championship started at a blistering pace, as many races at Fife Cycle Park do, which saw an elite group of seven away early. Not blistering enough however for Edinburgh’s Ciaran McSherry, who attacked the group and was gone, proceeding to build an extraordinary lead, eventually lapping all but one of his competitors. The rest of the podium was decided though a series of attacks eventually seeing Edinburgh secure the 1-2 with Louis Moore proving strongest in second and Matiss Robertson of UHI securing his second student podium of the season in third.
Ciaran McSherry (University of Edinburgh) crossing the finish line
The Women’s Championship saw a similarly explosive tempo from the gun, with Beth Maciver (GCU) and Arianne Holland (Edinburgh) showing no mercy to their competitors, riding away in the opening laps, never to be caught. It was a display of textbook cornering technique and smooth rotation between the two, who both ride for the Alba Development Team. It eventually came down to the final sprint where Maciver taking first position round the last corner and then launching an unbelievable sprint to take the title by several bike lengths with Holland rolling home in second with Maisie Aubrey (Stirling) proving the strongest of the rest to take home third.
The Women’s Podium. Maisie Aubrey (LEFT), Beth Maciver (MIDDLE) and Arianne Holland (LEFT)
Both races included the “Ride Faster, Ride Further” Combativity Award sponsored by Le Col won by Neelesh Corey Batchasingh and Catriona Barbour for the men’s and women’s races respectively. Both showed incredible spirit and perseverance during their races and were thoroughly deserving of their place on the podium.
The results of the day sealed the Institution Series win for the University of Edinburgh with 480 points, beating out Dundee in second with 398 points across the year, with Stirling just pipping Glasgow for third with 231. Points were earned for every Scottish Student Cycling event of the academic year, combining off-road and on road performances for one combined ranking.
In addition to the student races, the day also featured category 4 races for men and women as well as an open race. All three included some thrilling racing with non-stop attacks and some stand out performances with safe and sensible handling being shown by all riders involved.
A special thanks goes to Le Col for sponsoring the event, Scottish Cycling for funding the coaching session and all the commissaries, marshals and volunteers, without them none of this would be possible.
Photo credit: Nico Anelli
Congratulations to all Medallists! Full results can be found HERE. Photos can be seen HERE
1st Ciaran McSherry, University of Edinburgh
2nd Louis Moore, University of Edinburgh
3rd Matiss Robertson, University of the Highlands and Islands
1st Beth McIver, Glasgow Caledonian University
2nd Arianne Holland, University of Edinburgh
3rd Maisie Aubrey, University of Stirling
Ride Faster, Ride Further Combative Award
Men’s: Neelesh Corey Batchasingh, University of Dundee
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Women’s: Catriona Barbour, University of Stirling