MITCH Carrington had to settle for another podium finish at Goddard Lane on Sunday morning.
Sam Spokes won the Tamworth Cycling Club’s A Grade criterium from Carrington and Fraser Ashford as the 21-year-old Spokes cranks up his training for a tilt at a national road title early next year and then a return to Europe and his professional cycling team.
Carrington, 24, has had two stints in Europe.
The first trip to Belgium he busted a shoulder in a nasty race fall and returned early.
Earlier this year he had another month or so racing.
“I loved it, have no regrets about going over there,” he said on Sunday.
“But I’m 24 now. They’ve got heaps of 18 and 19-year-olds of the same ability and those four or five years more than I have.
“Plus I wasn’t good enough to be a pro.”
He’s back working as a plumber with his old boss Greg Kellett, sub-contracting for Matt Halpin.
While they are based in Armidale, he’s also had a bit of time to play some golf on the leafy Armidale course.
“I had four over up there the other day,” he smiled.
Before he discovered bike racing at a late age he was a pretty handy young golfer.
“I couldn’t believe how far I was hitting them up there the other day,” he said.
He does know how Sam Spokes continues to win A grade crits at Tamworth.
He’s got that little bit extra on us,” Carrington said.
“All that racing in Europe against the pros.
“He always has that little bit up his sleeve from all that hard racing he’s had.
“He got the jump on us down the back straight.
“Fraser was on his wheel and I was on Fraser’s wheel. Sam was first around the corner but the final straight is too short to try to catch him.
“It was too far (the gap) to make up on him but I was able to get Fraser.”
Tamworth races criterium events at Goddard Lane again this Sunday (8am start) as well as having track racing at the Tamworth Velodrome on Thursday evening.