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HMS Collingwood Officer qualifies for World Gran Fondo Road Race

15 June 2018
Lieutenant Commander Jon Pollard, Training Project’s Key Customer, for the Training Equipment Project Management Team, HMS Collingwood, is delighted to have successfully completed the UCI Gran Fondo World Series cycling event.

The UCI Gran Fondo World Series cycling concept is overseen by the world governing body for sports cycling and is aimed at competitive riders who just miss the skills and talent to become a Pro Elite rider, but who still want to compete at a high level.

Jon entered the UCI Tour of Cambridgeshire, 79.3 mile ‘Gran Fondo’ Road Race as a personal challenge for the New Year in Jan 18.

Starting in Peterborough, the event was held on closed roads on 3rdJune giving amateur cyclists from all over the world the chance to compete in pro conditions with Great Britain Age Group Masters qualifying places at the UCI Gran Fondo World Road Race championships on the line for the fastest riders.

By its very nature bike racing is a demanding and somewhat dangerous sport.

Lieutenant Commander Jon Pollard RN

Following 5 months of dedicated training, he completed the gruelling race, finishing 22nd out of 450 riders in the 45-49 age group category in a time of 3hrs 2mins 46 secs (averaging 26mph overall) – and finishing just 6 secs behind the winner.

Having successfully gained a qualification place, Jon has now been invited to attend the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships, as an GB Age Group Master, in Varese, Northern Italy, in September, where the winner will be awarded the coveted UCI Rainbow Jersey.

He said of his achievement “By its very nature bike racing is a demanding and somewhat dangerous sport. Fortunately I managed to avoid the crashes during the race and remain focussed to remain with the lead group until the finish, achieving my aim of qualifying for the World Gran Fondo championships in Italy later this year.”

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