Horsfield and McPhee build upon MTB Series dominance
Robin Horsfield and Cassandra McPhee picked up comfortable victories in the One Communications MTB Race Series at Admiralty Park yesterday.
It was the second straight win for Horsfield who is back home from university in Canada because of the Covid-19 pandemic, while McPhee made it three straight victories in the women’s division in the fourth race of the seven race series.
Competing in the Open 60 Minutes division, Horsfield showed his class with a strong ride in tough conditions to follow up the victory he claimed last weekend at Lagoon Park.
“It’s better in the winter, for sure, than the summer,” Horsfield said of the hilly conditions at Admiralty Park. “It’s nice weather to be here training right now.
“Because of the situation in Canada, I’m here for a while. I didn’t do any racing last year, just training all the time, so it’s nice to be back racing again.
“I’m enjoying it, it’s a great crowd and lovely course set up and using as much space as possible.
“I’m currently in university online, it’s going well, balancing training and school.
“I’m turning 22 this year, so this is my last year in under-23 before I move up to elite men which will be another ball park. But I look forward to racing in that group.
“There’s no racing in Canada right now with all the snow, so it’s nice to be able to ride here and gauge my fitness going into this year’s season and seeing where I can improve.
“This is a really short course, but really tough because you’ve got two big hills. It’s very up and down and you don’t have much time to recover.
“It’s always full gas, definitely a tough one to push hard on, but the best one for fitness, really.”
Horsfield plans to finish the series, which has its final three races at Hog Bay Park on February 28 and then at the old Casemates Prison grounds on March 7 before the finale at Ferry Reach on March 14.
“I enjoy these courses, racing on what I used to race on when I was younger,” added Horsfield who is based in Guelph, Ontario, and specialises in mountain bike racing.
“It’s great to come out and see the guys I used to race with.”
Horsfield again beat Alexander Miller for the top spot, finishing in a time of 48min, 12.3sec while Miller was second in 45:43 and Liam Flannery third in the men’s Open 60 Minutes race in 47:43.
McPhee, 21, was a comfortable winner in the women’s Open 60 Minutes race, finishing ahead of Jennifer Wilson who had a third straight second place finish. McPhee clocked 47:54 and Wilson 51:03 with Ashley Robinson third in 47:51.
“I found it was a bit slippery, but it was really fun,“ McPhee said.
“It’s always fun to race against the ladies and to keep pushing yourself, while it’s fun because you’re with other people.
“This course was definitely more technical and technique is huge in these trails. It was definitely more hilly as well.
“It’s fun for me, and being with people whose company I enjoy. Ashley’s a beast, by far the best in downhill in our category, better than some of the men, too.”
Chad Townsell won the men’s Open 30 Minutes race in 33:12 with Michael Terceira second in 33:37 and Sherman Darrell third in 33:53.
The women’s Open 30 Minutes race was won by Caroline Wright in a time of 31:53 and Zoey Roberts second in 37:18 with Yulia Bruskova third in 39:28.
Gordon Smith and S’Nya Cumbermack won the male and female 30 Minute 13 to 16 age group races while James McFarlane and Kelsie Wade won their respective 12 and under 15 Minute races.