Is the Best All Rounder competition dead in North Lancashire?

Events and rider numbers have been decreasing in recent years and the North Lancs Time Trial Association is asking its members for help. Why is it that when cycling in the UK has never been more popular that the NLTTA’s competitions and events are not oversubscribed with riders?

Short distance time trials are very popular, club 10’s and open 10’s and 25’s are still fairly well attended. The NLTTA short distance speed BAR competition takes riders best two 10 and 25 mile TT times to qualify for the season-long competition. In 2012, 58 riders qualified for the competition which is fairly healthy.

The situation in the long-distance BAR competition couldn’t be more different. Rider numbers and events have been falling drastically in recent years. The 12-hour has gone for good, there was no 100 mile TT last year either. There was no BAR champion last year!

South of Lancaster we are lucky if we have more than two or three 25 mile TT events to compete in, and only one 50 mile TT. For riders living in Lancashire riding a TT usually involves a long drive up the M6 to Levens or even further to Cockermouth to ride BAR counting events. The 100 mile TT is only possible at Cockermouth now so for member clubs it is a huge logistical nightmare for marshalls, riders and helpers to compete in Cockermouth.

Is the long distance BAR competition a thing of the past? Is the modern rider only interested in fast times and on drag strips? I don’t think so, the SPOCO sporting courses events in Lancashire and promoted by Rossendale RC are very well organised and attended – is this the way forward for the NLTTA? Do they need to re-invent their competitions? Do they need to publicize their competitions more using Twitter, Facebook, Blogging etc?

The history of the NLTTA, founded in 1928 to promote a racing calendar for the member clubs in the North Lancashire area is something we do not want to be consigned to history – what can we do to keep the association relevant?