A & T Festival - Official club statement.

"Normally I would not reply to someone who doesn't have the guts to name themselves, but I must answer such absurd comments posted on our website.

No "slagging off", as you call it, has been made of the Newport club. What I have done is to criticise those individuals from all clubs who failed to honour a commitment, and I stand by everything that I have said and written on this topic.

With regard to the non appearance of the A & T club at Newport last year, we were badly let down by two riders who had given their commitment, at the time of entering the competition, to race for us in the U-16 BTC. We took strong action against the two riders by throwing them out of the club, as well as sending a written apology to the BCF. I await with interest to see what action, if any, the Newport club take against the seven riders who failed to honour their commitment to ride at A & T.

Your accusation that the A & T club "cynically altered the age cate(r)gories at short notice to fix it for your riders in 2 of the meetings" is, quite frankly, libellous. This is a gross slur on the integrity of the hard working A & T club officials, and is a monstrous disservice to the riders who were good enough to win on the day.

For each of the 14 Festivals we have staged, the events have always been organised to suit the age profile of entries received. There are no set age categories. This year saw us receive 20 entries from riders aged between 6 and 10 years old, so these made up the Novices category. Another 20 entries were received from riders aged between 11 and 15 years old, so these made up the Junior category. The remaining 20 entries were aged 16 and above, so these made up the Senior category. If any riders expect to race against riders who are all younger than they are, then they really do have a problem with understanding what sport is about.

Even taking into account the wins this weekend, A & T riders have had more wins in British Individual Finals than in A & T Festivals. This is hardly the action of a club that fixes its main event to suit its own riders.

I look forward to the so-called "Truth Sayer" having the guts to identify yourself, and to receiving an apology and unreserved withdrawal of your libellous remarks."

Mike Hack, A & T Chairman

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