Isle of man trip is one to savour for cycle ace Alderney

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Alderney Baker, riding for Chichester’s Southdown Velo-Geared Bikes, was one of more than 250 youth riders who competed in the 2011 Isle of Man Youth tour, a three-day event.

Older brother Erin was unable to race because of injury, but was cheering on his sister and giving lots of advice ... which was naturally ignored.

The first of the three events was a time trial along Douglas promenade on the Friday evening. On a borrowed bike that she had ridden for the first time only the day before, Baker finished third in the under-ten girls’ category.

Next day came a road race that finished with a hill climb that would make most adults get off and walk. Undeterred by this, Baker went one better and finished second.

The weekend culminated in an eight-lap circuit race around the national sports centre track where Mark Cavendish started his cycling career at a similar age. Baker started well, leading the whole field at the end of lap one, but the boys were having none of that. Baker battled on and came home just behind the leading boys and she finished first out of the girls, taking bonuses on laps two and six.

Baker was awarded both the green jersey and trophy for the most points and the pink jersey and trophy for the overall winner of the under-ten girls.