Linlithgow cyclist Alex Ball lands 85km British Eagle Road Race title
Linlithgow Bridge cyclist Alex Ball took an emphatic and impressive win at the 85km British Eagle Road Race on Saturday.
Alex, 19, comfirtably won by a whopping 30 seconds after soloing to victory in front of the chasing peloton in the East Lothian road race near Humbie.
Alex grew up as a member of the town’s cycling club, West Lothian Clarion, but now rides for the Vanelli-Project Go racing team
Team work paid off in the race as his team-mates disrupted the chasing bunch so that Alex could keep his lead to the finish line and take his first senior road race victory.
Alex told the Journal and Gazette: “I felt good today and followed attacks where necessary, then with 15km to go I attacked with two other riders and managed to get a 50 second lead.
"Before the last climb I was able to drop my breakaway companions to finish solo and get the win.”
“As the finish line approached my legs started to lock up but I looked over my shoulder and realised I had a big enough lead to enjoy the moment as I rolled in first.”
The British Eagle Trophy, organised by the Musselburgh Road Club, had a field of 60 riders and followed a rolling circuit around the lanes of East Lothian.
As if that wasn’t enough glory for cyclists from the west Lothian area, another Linlithgow cyclist - Commonwealth Games medallist James McCallum - managed to finish second in the bunch sprint, which also gave him the added bonus of being crowned as first Veteran to finish the race.
Meanwhile, Ball also revealed that he spent the summer racing in Italy as a guest rider for the Zappi Racing Team.
He said: “The racing in Italy was much harder than I’m used to with races as long as 180 km in 40 degree heat, but I enjoyed the experiences and learnt so much about the tactics of road racing and came back feeling fitter.”
Ball’s next race will be the the local Battle of Black Loch based around Slamannan. He also has plans to challenge himself by riding the height of Everest up a local climb multiple times for the Project Go charity which raises money for people with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.