Verulam hail another great show as Muddy Monsters series returns to St Albans

PUBLISHED: 11:58 21 February 2019

Verulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

Verulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

Judith Parry Photography

Verulam Cycling Club were the hosts for another successful running of the Muddy Monsters Cyclo-cross race series - the fourth round of this year's championship.

Verulam Cycling Club's Sophie Godfrey at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Sophie Godfrey at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

Originally created by British Cycling, the series covers the whole of Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire area and has continued to grow with more aspiring young racers and more events being added.

Verulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

It is the second year Verulam has hosted the event, held at the Marlborough Club in St Albans, with a challenging course designed by Verulam Reallymoving’s cyclo-cross specialist Tom Martin and Verulam chairman Doug Driscoll.

Verulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

In total nearly 60 children participated in 12 races including sprint, endurance and handicap events for the different age groups.

Verulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

The series runs throughout the cyclo-cross season with prizes on offer for each event and trophies once all the rounds have been completed.

Verulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

For those racing for established clubs like Welwyn Wheelers, Bedford Road CC, Team Milton Keynes and Hitchin Nomads, there was a lot at stake.

Verulam Cycling Club's Alex Taylor-Rose at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Alex Taylor-Rose at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

But among the fields in each age category were also a lot of first-time racers who just wanted to join in and have fun, precisely the aim of the series.

Verulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

There were plenty of outstanding performances to admire but for the host club the likes of Joel Kaye, Henry Barker, Samuel Stacey, Molly Barker and both Ben and Alex Taylor-Rose all stood out, putting in impressive efforts.

Verulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker chasing Ella Ruggles of Hitchin Nomads at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker chasing Ella Ruggles of Hitchin Nomads at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

Davinder Bhatia, head of Verulam’s youth development programme, said: “It was inspirational to all of us.

Verulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker chasing Ella Ruggles of Hitchin Nomads at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Molly Barker chasing Ella Ruggles of Hitchin Nomads at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

“This is Verulam CC at its best - giving something back to the community and cycling and it was a great day out for everyone.

Verulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club's Henry Barker at the Muddy Monsters event. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

“We hope to see all the racers again at Muddy Monsters next season and progressing into the next levels of cycle racing in the future.”

Verulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

The next round of the series take place on Saturday at Bedford Priory Marina before it returns to Hertfordshire on March 2 when the Gosling Sports Park in Welwyn Garden City is the venue.

Verulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHYVerulam Cycling Club hosted the latest round of the Muddy Monsters series at the Marlborough Club in St Albans. Picture: JUDITH PARRY PHOTOGRAPHY

More details are available at https://muddymonstershertsandbeds.wordpress.com/

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