Cockerill moves to top of the standings

Seb Pickard, Stewart Pickard and Ben Roberts
Seb Pickard, Stewart Pickard and Ben Roberts

AFTER top 10 placings in each of the four East Riding Race League events this season, Martin Cockerill has taken the lead in the overall standings.

Race four of eight was held on Thursday evening at Etton in atrocious conditions from start to finish with strong winds and driving rain.

On a short tight circuit of seven five-mile laps on a road surface that is not ideal in dry conditions, punctures would always be a major threat to all riders’ chances.

Out of the nine Bridlington riders braving the conditions, Mark Woodley, Brian Parling, Chris Hutchinson and Stewart Pickard all punctured within two laps, relegating them to unlucky spectators.

This left Seb Pickard, Sam Hoad, Miles Flather, Ben Roberts and Martin Cockerill to fly the flag for the club which, through some superb efforts from all is proving to be one of the strongest teams of the series so far.

After four laps had been completed, group two, containing Hoad, was caught by group three containing Pickard and Roberts, Flather and Cockerill, who had been moved back into group four from three due to some impressive performances in the previous three races, had all joined together.

With three laps remaining and conditions no better, determination and nerves of steel were shown by all five remaining Bridlington riders.

Youngster Pickard once again showed maturity beyond his years enjoying another good night of aggressive racing and a finish just outside the top 10.

Hoad, one of the few to enjoy the conditions despite being caught up in a crash, maintained his composure and was rewarded with a strong finish.

On the final lap Roberts, Flather and Cockerill were looking as strong as they did from the start, and with 400 metres to go, Roberts launched a blistering attack which caught out the pelaton with only two riders able to stay on his wheel.

Just as it looked as if he would hold on for victory, Matt Fenton (Cottingham Couriers) went past him in the final metres to take the victory.

Just behind them was a group of 10 riders with Cockerill and Flather.

First to attack was Cockerill whose speed soon caught the flagging rider in third place with Flather on his wheel the pair flew past, with Flather taking third and Cockerill fourth to to cap a brilliant night for Bridlington CC.

Roberts and Flather are now in the top 10 overall standings and with Cockerill in top spot, the club look forward to the next event on home roads, a hilly 10-mile circuit based round Burton Fleming on Thursday June 21 at 7pm.