A strong field of riders descended on the South Ayrshire village of Straiton for the annual fifty five mile road race. It is called 'The Struggle' for a reason. This year the autumnal conditions added to the challenging terrain, tight turns, hump backed bridges and the uphill sprint finish. The tone was set early by the Race Commissair during the rider briefing, describing one section of the course as a series of potholes patched together with some tarmac. The race was on the moment the peloton left the neutralised section and powered towards the first turn at Kirkmichael. Experienced FWCC road man Sean Barron looked good out on the course, leading the main chasing bunch as they flew through the turn in Crosshill in pursuit of a six-man group that had broken away on the first lap. The pace was furious. FWCC teammate Stevie Gillon was chewing the handlebars, literally: his bar tape had come loose and he had to bite through the tail so it didn't get tangled in his front wheel. The breakaway managed to stay out in front, increasing their domination, but shedding riders until just three remained. Barron was on his sixteenth consecutive day of riding, which included a five hundred mile tour of Majorca, and on the penultimate lap, as the pace increased yet again, this mileage began to tell. Nonetheless, a midfield 19th place finish was no disgrace at all given the conditions. Only 26 of the 40 starters managed to finish, with fifty five miles covered in a barely believable two hours. The race was organised by our friends at Ayr Roads Cycle Club and is part of the British Cycling South West Regional Championships. The winner was Cameron Richardson (Bioracer-Moriarty Bikes), with 17 year old George Bell (Cycling Performance Squad) in second, and Alexander MacRae (Ciclotel f/b YPB) third. In the competition for first race marshalls back to race HQ for coffee and cake were Club Secretary Walker and Chairman Skinner, who both thought the race was five laps instead of six. An oversight which was rewarded with three eggs sandwiches, two flapjacks and a vegan cheesecake.