Cycling: Robin Delve aims to win back his champion crown

Joseph Bulmer

Former World Masters Cyclo-cross champion Robin Delve could hardly be in better form ahead of an attempt to win back his crown on 'home' territory in nine days' time.

Mid-Devon CC star Delve tightened his grip on the National Trophy Series with another victory in Round Four at Sunderland's Herrington Country Park at the weekend.

Only the fifth and final round of that competition is left, in Kent on December 11.

But the 62-year-old delivery driver could be sporting the 'rainbow stripes' of over-60 world champion by then, for he says: "That's been my big target for this season.

"The world championships are at Ipswich on December 3 and, although the course is quite flat and I would rather it was a bit harder, I seem to be going really well and I will give it my best shot.

"This year might be my best chance of another title, because I'm nearly 63 and there are younger guys coming into my age-group all the time."

Delve, who last won the 'worlds' in Belgium three years ago, also conducts midweek coaching sessions at Newton Abbot's Forde and Courtney Parks.

"It's all about inspiring the next generation," he said.

"I'm happy to help the younger riders coming up, and it also keeps me sharp apart from my own training sessions."

One of those youngsters is Bayley Woodger, who had to avoid a pile-up just after the start to finish 55th in a huge under-14 field at Sunderland, while Martin Smith worked his way through the Over50  race to finish 35th from a lower grid position.

This Sunday, November 28, sees the SW Regional Championships at Newnham Park, Plymouth, which is also round five of the SW League Series.