Bradford bags first victory of the season
ActiveEdge rider wins Andrews Trophy with powerful run in finale

Jim Bradford powered clear of a select breakaway group to take a dominant victory in the Andrews Trophy (Saturday 18 May).

The 27-year old from Cambridge timed his charge up Pan Lane to perfection, making his move in the final kilometre through a flowing chicane, to take the chequered flag several seconds clear of his nearest rivals.

With Bradford already over the line, the remainder of the eight-man breakaway were left to dispute the minor placings. Ashley Cox (Flamme Rouge Cycling Team) took 2nd, ahead of Richardsons-Trek’s Matthew Clements.

The Leigh-on-Sea based team had started as pre-race favourites with a seven-strong squad that included 2018 Andrews Trophy winner James Jenkins, former Team Wiggins star Rhys Howells and Lewis Bulley. From the outset, they looked to be firmly in control with riders monitoring every move and positioned in the initial breakaways.

As each of the 13 laps were counted down, Richardsons-Trek looked to be dictating affairs. So much so, that on the final tour of the rolling course - between the picturesque villages of West and East Hanningfield – it was the team’s Joseph Sutton, James Jenkins, Lewis Bulley and Matthew Clements driving the pace at the head of affairs.

The interlopers among them were Matthew Webster (TAAP Racing), Ashley Cox, Seb Herrod (Strada Sport) and Bradford.

As the chasing group began to squabble about who should contribute to closing the gap, the advantage was firmly placed in the hands of the leading octet.

As the leaders turned into Pan Lane for the last time, Bradford unleashed his devastating kick: “It was an all or nothing move,” he explained. “At the chicane, near the bottom of the climb to the finish, I had a look back and could see the gap was enough.”

Echoing Vinnie Jones’ closing line in the hit movie Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, he added: “Getting up that last hill was ‘emotional’. It’s the first time I’ve raced this course, so it was a bit of a daunting prospect at the start. However, it’s good to get my first win of the season, for me and the team, and also to give the sponsors a reward for their backing.”

Congratulating him afterwards, Rhys Howells sportingly acknowledged Bradford’s deserved success, saying: “You were really, really strong. Impressive. You were the strongest all day, mate.”
 
Jim Bradford solos to victory Congratulations from his team mates

The break-away in action

Local team Richardsons-Trek had a strong presence in the break-away

Another view of the leading group

ex-Wheeler Simon Alexander worked hard for the team

 


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