Following recent scorching temperatures, slightly cooler conditions were welcomed by the riders taking part in the Duncan Murray Wines round of the Women’s Team Series. That, combined with a rolling circuit, made early breakaways a likely prospect and the peloton made sure the pace was cranked up high right from the off to prevent anyone getting away. Nevertheless, the attacks came thick and fast with several notable examples by the riders of the Fusion RT-Veloperformance team – one of them, consisting of Fusion’s Molly Patch and her new team mate Ruth Summerford, along with Fran Cutts of CC London, Kerry Middleton of Sigma-Threo and junior Alderney Baker of Empella, got away and stayed away, eventually leading to Molly and Ruth taking the two top spots with Fran in third place.
Neutral Service caught up with team after the prize-giving and spoke to Molly and directeur sportif Terry Williamson to find out their thoughts on how the day had played out…
Neutral Service: Molly – your first road race win! How does it feel?
Molly Patch: Great! I’m so excited – it feels like its been a long time coming, but I’ve worked so hard, these last few months. I had a bit of a rough year with illness, so coming into this race feeling so strong – I raced yesterday and had quite a lot of confidence from that, and wanted to put in a really good shift and see what I could do.
NS: What was the team’s plan for today?
MP: This was the plan: first lap, Emily Meakin to do some dummy attacks, Jenny Holden to do some attacks as well and watch the other teams. I’m trying to use my head a little bit more in races, sometimes you can get a little bit over-excited and think “I’ve got to go now, got to go now!”, but I bided my time and on the second lap saw Charmaine Porter from On Form on my wheel and I knew there would be a good group to go and just kept revving it up – I never wanted a break to stick so much before, if it came down to a bunch sprint I would not be anywhere. To get in the break and for it to stick was great – last year we had a similar situation at the Dave Peck Memorial – there was a break and I didn’t use my head and didn’t have the confidence to attack it, but I knew I had the legs today.
NS: You attacked again with half a lap to go.
MP: Yes, we just went, it was my team mate Ruth Summerford and myself in the break of five and three of us were working quite hard, the other two had worked pretty hard, but the pace was picking up to much for them. Fran Cutts from CC London was on the front for a bit, Ruth was just sitting on her wheel and that was my chance to go and I knew Ruth would have it covered, then as soon as the other riders were knackered she just bridged across and put in such a big effort to get across to me. A great team day out.
NS: So the plan comes together.
Terry Williamson: We talked about it last night, about the options, this was one of those options and it worked.
NS: You are one of the most attacking teams in the team series, I remember at the Dave Peck walking up to you and asking if the days plan had been ‘attack attack attack’.
TW: It is the way that we ride, but what we got to today, was the point where we learned to refine what we do, there’s a time for attacking and a time to think, when things look sticky we know when to make the effort and do the business, it ‘s not just done on the hoof.
NS: Was the plan to put two up in the break.
TW: Yes, it was a bit of an ambitious plan, but it did work!
NS: And everybody played their part today.
TW: It was a total team effort which is one of the things we have been working towards all season. A total team effort brings success and what’s good for the team is good for the riders.
NS: That pretty much seals (latter confirmed) the Team Series win for Fusion.
TW: Everybody is telling us so and we are absolutely over the moon! (It was later confirmed that Fusion had indeed won the Series with 1526 points, thus beating On Form by 54 points – ed.)
More photos below the results!
1 Molly Patch (Fusion RT Veloperformance; Cat.2) 30pts
2 Ruth Summerford (Fusion RT Veloperformance; Cat.2) 25pts
3 Francesca Cutts (CC London; Cat.2) 21pts
4 Kerry Middleton (Sigma Sports x Threo; Cat.2) 17pts
5 Alderney Baker (Empella Cyclo-Cross.Com; Cat.2) 14pts
6 Jessica Finney (OnForm; Cat.2) 12pts
7 Mary Wilkinson (Jadan Weldtite-Vive le Velo; Cat.2) 10pts
8 Hannah Larbalestier (Boompods EDCO NRG; Cat.2) 8pts
9 Rebecca Johnson (Fusion RT Veloperformance; Cat.2) 7pts
10 Georgia Bullard (Jadan Weldtite-Vive le Velo; Cat.2) 6pts
11 Rosamund Bradbury (Sigma Sports x Threo; Cat.2) 5pts
12 April Tacey (Team 22; Cat.2) 4pts
13 Leah Dixon (OnForm; Cat.2) 3pts
14 Jessie Carridge (IOM Ladies; Cat.3) 2pts
15 Anna Marie Hughes (Norwood Paragon; Cat.2) 1pt