Bike racing returns to Bath's Victoria Park each Wednesday this May

Entries invited for what looks set to be some thrilling evenings of racing next month

by Simon_MacMichael   April 23, 2011  

Bath Crescent.jpg

Perhaps in tune with the nostalgic zeitgeist brought about by factors such as the recession and the impending royal wedding, elite-level bike racing is set to return to Bath’s Victoria Park, where it was a regular attraction up to 20 or so years ago*.

An attempt was made to reintroduce the races a few years ago, but this May will see some top action take place on each Wednesday evening throughout the month.

As well as the Elite Cat 1 and 2 men’s race, there will be a full supporting programme of Youth A/B, Cat 3 and 4 and Women’s races, with series leader and points leader jerseys given out at the end of each round.

Each race will last between 15 and 30 minutes, with the action kicking off at 6.45pm, and the series has been made possible with the support of Bath & North East Somerset Council and British Cycling. It is organised by four local cycling clubs - Somer Valley CC, Avonlea-Treasure RT, Velo Club Walcot and Bath CC – and if you’re interested in taking part, full details are available on the Bath Cycle Races website.

* No-one we’ve spoken to yet seems too sure about when the races were discontinued, so if you do have any information, stories or even pictures, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

4 user comments

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That sounds really good. Will have to go and watch some of that.

jezzzer's picture

posted by jezzzer [339 posts]
23rd April 2011 - 15:26

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Oh trust me to finish 5 months of working in Bath just before this.... Sounds great - just gutted not to be there.

Vin Cox

posted by Vin Cox [44 posts]
23rd April 2011 - 15:54

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looking forward to it, looks set to be a great series Smile

Avonlea-Treasure Race Team
http://www.altrt.com
twitter:@davidcwhitfield

roadracedave's picture

posted by roadracedave [75 posts]
23rd April 2011 - 18:43

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This is great news! I did the last one in 1993 before Bath CC stopped organizing them regularly. A guy I know tried getting it back together again in the late 90's. Can't remember whether he managed it, but I know the effort and aggro involved put him off for good!

Assuming it's the same, the course is one short, tight circuit around the botanical gardens. It's probably less than a quarter of a mile with one brief sharp climb. Inevitably it's done very fast, so plenty of severe anaerobic pain. Riders will need to be able to handle their bikes at 25mph+, in a bunch, on tight bends while being unable to breathe. All the usual criterium stuff.

Just one thing. It's a public park and as we know, the Great British Public still mostly don't really get bike racing. I reckon they'll need to fence the circuit to prevent folk wandering about on it as they are inclined to do, occasionally deliberately, when they see 'their' parks being used for this sort of thing. It's never great when you see a belligerent old man and his dog purposefully striding across your path when you and twenty others are bearing down on him at nearly 30mph. Surprise

posted by Daddylonglegs [6 posts]
26th April 2011 - 18:30

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