In a field which included a Scottish National Champion, Sprockets Cycles and FWCC competitor Nat Hunter finished comfortably in seventh place. The race was the prestigious Criterium on the Campus held at Stirling University. Criteriums are an exciting, action-packed form of bike racing held on short closed road circuits. On the Continent criteriums attract large crowds and are as popular as football. The atmosphere in Stirling on Easter Sunday was every bit as thrilling. Nat made a textbook start, sprinting hard as soon as the flag dropped, entering the first corner in second place. The women's race was by far the most exciting of the day. With a wide spread of abilities, from Scotland's elite through to journey-women club riders and beginners, this was not a mere procession. On the early laps Nat appeared at the bottom of the finish straight in the leading group. Fellow FWCC/Sprockets junior Zoe Watters was not far behind in the bunch, tailed a little further back by new FWCC rider Beth Macrae. The pace was furious, and by the middle of the race a number of groups were beginning to form as back-markers moved forward, and tiring riders from the lead group moved backward. A small elite group had by now drawn ahead, but Nat was comfortably at the front of a fast second group. Beth, meanwhile, was making progress further back in the bunch, eventually joining up with Zoe. As the laps counted down, Beth appeared more and more at the head of this group, alongside Zoe. On the penultimate lap, Nat came into view around the sweeping left-hand bend leant steeply over, avoiding a crashed rider, and was on the front of her group up the hill to the start/finish line. If she could hold this position for one more lap she would cross the line behind the small elite group who were now about 20 seconds ahead. And she did hold it. Although outsprinted on the line by Gemma Penman, Nat did enough for a fantastic seventh place overall, and first Category 3 rider, in a large and intensely fought event. Beth finished in 16th and Zoe in 17th. An absolutely superb set of results from the FWCC Females in a race that had the spectators on the edge of their seats. Elsewhere Sean Barron was competing in the Category 3 and 4 menâs race. He got off to a nervous start as his foot pinged out of his pedal, but he quickly recovered and was ever-present near the front of the main bunch, holding that position throughout a challenging race to finish in 22nd. New club members John Deans and Cadge Paterson did an exceptional job in the Category 4 race. Both show great promise for future events and, after Sunday's excitement, are keen to try. Cadge in particular rode very strongly to achieve a joint 10th place finish; remarkable for a first attempt. Stevie Gillon, likewise, put in an excellent performance. Although losing touch with the leaders he formed up with a following group and worked well to finish just outside the top twenty. Guy Walker challenged the Category 4 competitors, on their state of the art carbon fibre racing machines, to beat him on his 1987 vintage Peugeot racing bike. And by and large they did. Nevertheless, a midfield position of 39th is still respectable, and was aided greatly by the race commentator getting the crowds to perform a Mexican wave every time he swept through. The effect was diminished by there being only two Mexican wavers, but the gesture was appreciated.