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Clarke hits first cat mark after another strong ride
1:00pm Thursday 27th September 2012 in Local Sport
HAGLEY cycling star Matt Clarke claimed his first category licence in style with third at the John Walker Road Race.
The 18-year-old Halesowen Cycling Club rider battled superbly against a field which included 80 elite riders in Oxfordshire.
Atrocious conditions saw the race cut from 75 to 45 miles and Clarke was able to get into the decisive break which went away on the first of two-and-three-quarter laps.
Node4’s Matt Cronshaw eventually broke away to take the win with Jamie Shirlaw and Clarke close behind.
A delighted Clarke said: “A small group of riders went clear and then it split in a crosswind and I managed to grit my teeth and find enough shelter to get into it.
“Cronshaw was away with one other person until the going got tough and he eventually won the race.
“I could see the second placed rider and attacked on the final drag and was so close to catching him but I ended up finishing third, feeling great I had gave it my best in the conditions.”