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Lancs Victory for Reynolds

Curran wants to get back to winning ways after illness

THREE seasons ago the name of Paul Curran hardly ever missed the headlines as each weekend he dominated British amateur racing. A string of successes gave him four consecutive Star Trophy competition wins from 1985 to 1988.

His professional debut last year was spent learning a different style of racing, yet he still managed to win the professional criterium championship, as a member of the Percy Bilton squad.

This year has been different, no wins with his Crown - Chafes team, and no headlines. What has been happening?

'I've had illness the last week or two, he explained.

'I caught a bug which went on to my chest and it forced me to quit a couple of races.

'I climbed off in the Scottish Provident race in Liverpool and then again in the New Mills criterium.

'Bearing this in mind I decided not ride the McEwans LA city centre race in Glasgow.

'By the time the next round of the Scottish Provident League came in Belfast I seemed to have got over the worst of it.

'It seems to happen ever year about this time, and for the first time I was able to ride the Lancashire Enterprises Tour, normally I'm too ill!'

He seemed to have made a good recovery however by the time the Lancashire Tour was over, finishing sixth overall, with a string of daily placings in the first 10, only missing out on the final stage - a criterium.

On the second stage from Blackpool to Burnely he was sixth to Banana - Falcon's Rob Holden, sixth the next day in the 3.9-mile hilly time trial won by Great Britain amateur Wayne Randle, then eighth on the fourth stage to Chris Lillywhite (Banana-Falcon) and ninth to Chris Walker on the fifth stage.

'I was in the right move on one stage, but I got dropped on a steep hill, otherwise I could have finished second overall.

'It's been a frustrating season so far, and we are missing Mark Walsham who was injured.

'The team haven't won a pro race yet, so each week we have to set our sights on every race looking for that elusive win.

'It is a bit different from last year, but three of the Percy Bilton team are together with Crown-Chafes.

'This time last year we were riding in America, but this year it is hour-long criteriums which do nothing for your form.

'I'm still doing a lot of training with the Milk Race in mind, but with no other stage races beforehand it is going to be tough.'

Stage 1: Chorley Criterium

Event 1: Simeon Hempsall (GB A) 12m in 28-5.87; 2, G. Gimson (Chesterfield Coureurs); 3, S. O'Brien (NW CoE); 4, P. Sheard (Paragon RT); 5, M. Bell (NW CoE); 6, B. Johnson (Paragon RT), all st.

Event 2: Chris Walker (Banana-Falcon) 12m in 28.41.74; 2, S. Sutton (Banana-Falcon); 3, J. Walshaw (Crown - Chafes); 4, N. Barnes (Teka);5, S. Shaw (Crown - Chafes); 6, R. Williams (Ever Ready - Halfords) all st.

Event 3: Wayne Randle (GB B) 12m in 28-5.55; 2, M. Jones (GS Bollington) st; 3, A. Allen (Eastern CoE) at 55sec; 4, T.Stokes (Amateur Comp) at 1-1; 5, R. Bradley (Eastern CoE) st; 6, P. Maxwell (GB B) both st.

Overall.- Wayne Randle (GB B).

Stage 2: Blackpool - Burnley

Robert Holden (Banana- Falcon) 69.3m in 2-46-34; 2, K. Reynolds (Banana. Falcon) at 3-24; 3, D. Rayner (Banana - Falcon) at 3-28; 4, J. McLoughlin (Ever Ready- Halfords); 5, T. Hall (GB A); 6, P. Curran (Crown - Chafes); 7, S. O'Brien (NW CoE A); 8, D. Spencer (E Mids CoE) all st; 9, N. Hoban (Crown - Chafes) at 4-30; 10, W. Randle (GB B); 11, C. Walker (Banana - Falcon); 12, P. Regere (GB B); 13, J. Evans (Wales); 14, G. Gimsen (Chesterfield Coureurs); 15, I. Wright (NW CoE A); 16, S. McVittle (Chesterfield Coureurs); 17, L. Clarke (Chesterfield Coureurs); 18, C. Young (Ever Ready - Halfords); 19, S. Farrell (GB A); 20, N. Dunn (Paragon RT) all st.

Stage 3: Burnley - Crown Point Road, 3.9m hilly time trial

Wayne Randle (GB B) 12-22; 2,D. Rayner (Banana - Falcon) at 4sec; 3, J. McLoughlin (Ever Ready - Halfords) at 6sec; 4, C. Walker (Banana - Falcon) at 7sec; 5, S. O'Brien (NW CoE A) at 11 sec; 6, P. Curran (Crown -Chafes) at 14sec; 7, K. Reynolds (Banana -Falcon) at 17sec; 8, G. Baker (Ever Ready -Halfords) at l8sec; 9, T. Hall (GB A) at 30sec; 10, R. Holden (Banana - Falcon) at 31 sec; 11, S. Farrell (GB A) st; 12, B. Johnson (Paragon RT) at 37sec; 13, C. Lillywhite (Banana-Falcon) at 39sec; 14, P. Longbottom (GB A) st; 15, J. Evans (Wales) at 43sec; 16, I. Chivers (Paragon RT) st; 17, N. Bishop (GB A) at 47sec; 18, M. Jones (SG Bollington) st; 19, S. Bray (E Mids CoE) st; 20, J. Clay (unsponsored) at 49sec.

Overall.- Rob Holden (Banana - Falcon)

Stage 4: Rawtenstall - Accrington

Chris LilIywhite (Banana-Falcon) 103m in 4-16-39; 2, S. Hempsall (GB A); 3, B. Luckwell (Ever Ready-Halfords); 4, K. Reynolds (Banana-Falcon); 5, J. Charlesworth (GB B) all st; 6, A. Doyle (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 6sec; 7, M. McKay (East Mids CE) at 5-39; 8, P.Curran (Crown-Chafes) st; 9, D. Spencer (East Mids CE) st; 10, G. Shirley (Yorkshire-Humberside CE) at 9-38; 11, R. Williams (Ever Ready -Halfords)st; 12, C. Walker (Banana-Falcon) at 12-2; 13, G. Baker (Ever Ready-Halfords); 14, N. Noble (Paragon RT); 15, P.Rogers (GB B); 16, P. Maxwell (GB B); 17, I.Wright (North West CE); 18, P. Barrett (Paragon RT); 19, K. Bidwell (SG Bollington); 20, N. Barnes (Teka) all st.

Overall.- Keith Reynolds (Banana-Falcon)

Stage 5, Preston - Fleetwood

Chris Walker (Banana-Falcon) 69m in 2-48-32; 2, W. Randle (GB B) st; 3, D. Mann (unsponsored) at l3sec; 4, K. Reynolds (Banana-Falcon) at 17sec; 5, J. Clay (unsponsored); 6, P.Longbottom (GB A); 7, N.Barnes (Teka); 8, C. Lillywhite (Banana-Falcon) ; 9, P. Curran (Crown-Chafes); 10, D. Spencer (East Mids CE) all st; 11, R.Williams (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 58sec; 12, P. Rogers (GB B); 13, B. Smith (Scotland); 14, D. Rayner (Banana-Falcon); 15, 5. Hempsall (GB A); 16, N.Noble (Paragon RT) ; 17, G. Gimson (Chesterfield Coureurs); 18, S.O'Brien (North West CE A); 19, B.Luckwell (Ever Ready - Halfords); 20, A. Allen (Eastern CE).

Stage 6: Fleetwood Criterium

Chris Lillywhite (Banana-Falcon) 28m in 56-38; 2, P. Rogers (GB 'B'); 3, R. Holden (Banana-Falcon); 4, R. Williams (Ever Ready-Halfords); 5, D. Rayner (Banana-Falcon); 6, W. Randle(GB B); 7, C. Walker (Banana-Falcon); 8, G. Gimson (Chesterfield Cour); 9, D. Spencer (E. Mids CE); 10, I. Wright (NW CE) all st.

Final overall

1. KEITH REYNOLDS (Banana-Falcon) 273m in 11-04-30
2. C. Lillywhite at 1-16
3. S. Hempsall (GB A) at 2-37
4. J. Charlesworth (GB B) at 2-38
5. B. Luckwell (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 3-4
6. P. Curran (Crown-Chafes) at 5-52
7. D. Spencer (E. Mids CE) at 6-39
8. M. McKay (E. Mids CE) at 9-16
9. T. Doyle (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 9-42
10. R. Holden (Banana-Falcon) at 10-4
11. J. McLoughlin (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 12-08
12. W. Randle (GB B) at 12-32
13. C. Walker (Banana-Falcon) at 12-37
14. D. Rayner (Banana-Falcon) at 12-40
15. S. O'Brien (NW CE) at 12-54
16. G. Shirley (Yorks & Humberside CE) at 13-39
17. P. Longbottom (GB A) at 13-43
18. N. Bishop (GB A) at 14-38
19. N. Barnes (Teka) at 14-46
20. G. Baker (Ever Ready-Halfords) at 14-49
21, N. Dunn (Paragon RT) st; 22,1. Wright (NW CE) at 14-50; 23, N. Hoban (Crown-Chafes) at 14-54; 24, P. Rogers (GB B) at 14-56; 25, S. Farrell (GB A) at 15-04; 26, P. Leigh (Lakeland & Lancs Div) at 15-12; 27, S. McVittie (Ches-terfield Cour) at 15-13; 28, J. Evans (Wales) at 15-15; 9, P. Sheard (Paragon RT) at 15-44; 30, D. Mann (PCA) at 15-52.

Team. - Banana-Falcon 33-20-34; 2, Ever Ready-Halfords 33-29-21; 3, GB A 33-42-53; 4, GB B 33-43-54; 5, E. Mids CE 33-46-39

Mountains.- Gary Baker 96 pts.