Riders from Staveley’s own cycling team were not disgraced when coming face to face with a star-studded field of paid professionals in a prestigious 130km race in Leicestershire on Sunday.
The Coalville Wheelers Road Race attracted the likes of Olympic gold medallist Ed Clancy and full-time pros such as Graham Briggs, Russ Downing and most of the Vitus Pro Cycling team.
So Damien Clayton and Dean Watson, of the Andy Moore Autocentres/J.E.James Racing Team, deserved huge credit for their efforts, particularly Clayton, who finished as high as fourth in the ride of the season so far.
Team manager Andy Moore said: “We were humbled as a local team to compete against the pros, but we made sure we didn’t give them too much respect.
“Damo rode shoulder to shoulder with some of the best in the business, and his performance was inspirational.”
The previous day, Clayton was also in a Moore quartet that took part in a York Sports Village Closed Circuit event, but it fell to young Aaron Chambers-Smith to take on the lead role and act as the strike force for the squad.
In a race marred by several falls and peloton chaos at one point, Chambers-Smith, nicknamed ‘Supersonic Smiffy’, delivered the goods too, launching a last-lap sprint attack to take second place.