New signing Damien ‘El Dynamo’ Clayton and junior champion Aaron ‘Supersonic Smiffy’ Chambers-Smith got their new seasons off to a flier for Staveley’s cycling team.
Clayton finished second and Chambers-Smith third when spearheading a four-strong squad for Andy Moore Autocentres/J.E.James Racing at Barnsley Road Club’s opening criterium race of the campaign at Wakefield.
The duo were joined by stalwart Andy Bishop and another new face, 19-year-old Marc Layfield, and team manager Andy Moore was delighted with the performance of his troops.
Clayton and Chambers-Smith hit the front of the peloton from the off, while Bishop and Layfield sat in close behind, protecting the leaders’ tactical positioning.
The front two attacked, opening up a purposeful gap, while Bishop and Layfield demonstrated an iron grip over the chasing group. Only one other rider, the eventual winner, was able to join Clayton and Chambers-Smith.
Moore said: “We worked a plan through precisely, and the lads followed it perfectly,” said Moore. “Bish and Marc’s defensive work was simply sublime, which set up the attack for the strikers. It was a truly professional job.”
The following day, Chambers-Smith pulled off a stunning victory in the Pembrey criterium race in Wales, fighting off a quality field that included a former Paris-Roubaix winner.
Moore said: “Aaron showed his class with a disciplined ride, attacking time after time until he broke the peloton. He’s worked extremely hard in winter training.”