By Bob Jolliffe
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NEW Forest Cycling Club tough guys John Heffernan and Gary Lock took first and second places in their club’s first evening 25-miler of the season at Lyndhurst.
The event was overshadowed by the actions of an irresponsible young thug who caused bruising to 15-year-old Hugo Walters waiting on the start line at Matley.
The youth hurled a “Coke” can from the passenger window of a passing car, hitting Hugo’s elbow and exploding in a sticky shower.
Shocked and angered by the inexplicable attack, Hugo was allowed to swap starting order with fellow juvenile Konnor Bracher-Walsh to give him time to mop up and calm down.
Further down the road, the thug compounded the offence when he leaned from the car and slapped first man off Dave Wilson as he was overtaken.
Hugo, who despite the attack finished in fifth place with a time of 1-06-23, later described the youth as “an idiot”.
Konnor, who finished his first 25, clocked a good 1-09-42 for 10th.
Victory and three club championship points went to current club champ Heffernan who, just three days earlier, had lowered his personal best by 15 seconds to 56-13 in good weather conditions at Upton.
And his form continued despite the cold north-westerly wind and wet conditions on the considerably tougher two-lap course taking in Beaulieu Road and Colbury on Tuesday where he clocked 59-54 against Lock’s nevertheless impressive 1-01-02 for two points.
Stuart Ward, making a return from injury, took third place with 1-05-09 and collected the final championship point on offer.
Stuart Peckham took fourth with 1-06-20, four seconds faster than Southampton Tri Club’s Peter Wooldridge who was sixth, one second behind young Walters.
Others (NFCC unless stated): Marc Barfoot (Contre la Montre) 1-06-59, Steve Roberts 1-07-11, Andrew Hanley 1-08-55, Nick Williams 1-09-47, Dan Mitchell 1-10-21, James Bannister 1-11-19, Joe Phillips 1-12-01, Richard Rajski 1-12-09, Keith Bradfield 1-12-17, Richard Mason 1-13-05, Dave Wilson 1-13-17, Hugh Roper 1-14-32, Geoff Weller 1-18-36, Ryan Blake (Soton TC) 1-20-47, Poppy Holmes (Soton TC) 1-20-58, Stuart Martin (Sotonia) 1-21-59, Rosie Hillary (Soton TC) 1-22-34, Martin Balk 1-25-40, Sue O’Dowd (Soton TC) 1-28-48.
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