Frost is only obstacle Wheelers need to cross at Fairthorne Manor

Phill Chinn, who masterminds the cyclocross event for Fareham Wheelers, in action at Fairthorne Manor last month. Picture: Robin Trueman

Phill Chinn, who masterminds the cyclocross event for Fareham Wheelers, in action at Fairthorne Manor last month. Picture: Robin Trueman

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  • Fareham club gear up to host round 13 of Wessex Cyclocross League
  • Roger De Vere confident of beating icy temperatures at Curdridge venue
  • Secretary backs club’s army of volunteers to shine again
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Roger De Vere is confident Fareham Wheelers can avoid giving contenders a frosty reception when they host round 13 of the Wessex Cyclocross League at Fairthorne Manor tomorrow.

Recent downpours left athletes to slug it out in boggy conditions when the Curdridge venue hosted the Hampshire Cross-Country Championships last weekend.

By the time the first race starts at 10am, I would hope the frost will have gone

Roger De Vere

But de Vere reckons it is the prospect of frost – not more sodden ground – which is the only concern ahead of tomorrow’s two-wheeled tear-up.

And the Wheelers secretary backed the club’s army of volunteers to deliver another memorable occasion, just like the previous round they held at the beginning of last month.

De Vere said: ‘I think it will be muddier than last time.

‘We understand from weather reports it is going to be pretty cold and there may be a frost.

‘But by the time the first race starts at 10am, I would hope the frost will have gone. That is more of a concern than the mud, though.

‘The British Cycling commissaires will do their inspection and we may have to make some adjustments.

‘Something that could be a problem is the bridge, which may not warm up like the rest of the ground. So we have to be doubly careful there when it comes to safety.

‘But we are all ready to rock and roll.’

Pedal On’s Sam Allen was the victor when the Wheelers hosted round 11 at Fairthorne Manor. He was third in Southampton last time out but remains in control of the senior league standings.

The senior race, which also includes under-23 riders, will take place at 2pm tomorrow.

Dan Guest backed up his victory in the Fareham club’s event with success in the following round, hosted by Crabwood, to take charge of the veteran 40-49 category.

That age group, alongside the junior riders, will race at 11.30am.

Eden Veranda’s Charlie Cooper and Cotswold Veldrijden’s Tom Sewell continue to slug it out at the top of the junior charts.

In the veteran 50 age group, Tim Costello, of GS Vecchi, got the better of Kevin Holloway by the narrowest of margins on the Curdridge course last month.

But the latter, who rides for VC 10, still holds sway in the championship standings.

Dave McMullen, who is the reigning world champion at veteran 60-64 level, has signed up for tomorrow’s event.

And he is sure to give those younger than him a run for their money when their race gets under way at 12.45pm, alongside the women – whose championship is led by Sarah Barber.

The novice race is set to begin at 10.32am – two minutes after the youth battle (10.30am).

The action kicks off with the under-10 and under-12 talents at 10am.

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