Russell Downing has had the cast removed from his broken wrist and is back in action at the five-day Ringerike Grand Prix in Norway.

The Pinarello rider crashed in Sunday?s Rogaland GP, also in Norway, but got back up to finish fourth.

An x-ray identified two broken bones in his hand but he was determined not to come home early from Norway.

?I?ve had the cast taken off today,? he said. ?And I?m going to race but all thoughts of winning it are probably out of the window. I?d hoped to get some results here but I don?t want to take any silly risks. We?ll see how it goes today.?

NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP ENTRIES

Meanwhile, David Millar (Slipstream), Roger Hammond (High Road), Dan Lloyd and Dan Fleeman (An Post) and Ian Stannard (Landbouwkrediet) are among the British riders based overseas who have already entered the National Championship road race, which takes place at Helmsley on Sunday, June 29.

High Road?s sprinter Mark Cavendish, fresh from two stage wins in the Giro d?Italia, is expected to enter, as is his team-mate Bradley Wiggins, who is riding the Otley criterium a few days before. Crédit Agricole?s Jeremy Hunt should also be on the start line.

However, Geraint Thomas and Steve Cummings of Barloworld will not be there as they are at a track training camp ahead of the Olympic Games.

Nicole Cooke and Sharon Laws are part of a strong Halfords Bikehut team in the women?s road race, which will be held on the Saturday (June 28).

STANNARD IN LUXEMBOURG

Landbouwkrediet?s Ian Stannard had entered the National ?25? Time Trial Championship, which takes place on Sunday (June 8), but instead kicks off at the Tour of Luxembourg, which starts with a prologue time trial today. His team-mate Paul Manning is also in the race.

LLOYD?S PLANS IN THE AIR

Daniel Lloyd (An Post) went from the Ras in Ireland to the Tour of Belgium, where he finished 26th overall and is waiting to finalise his warm-up races for the National Championships.

Lloyd was 13th on the final stage and his team-mate Dan Fleeman was 21st overall.

?I felt a bit tired at the start of Belgium because I?d come straight from the Ras. Initially I wanted to take it easy at the Ras but it?s hard to do that. I got in a break on the first day, then we had the jersey and towards the end I was working for [eventual winner] Stephen Gallagher,? he said.

?I got stronger as the Belgian race went on. I would have liked to have done better on the hilly day but mentally I was tired.?

Next up for Lloyd is the Tour de l?Oise stage race in northern France (June 12-15). Then he?s waiting to see if the team is accepted for the Boucles de la Mayenne stage race, also in France (June 19-22). If not he may consider a late entry to the Grand Prix of Wales in Abergavenny on June 22 as preparation for the National Championships. Last year he was a silver medallist and he wants to go one better.

POOLEY IN CANADA

After her eighth place in the Montreal World Cup at the weekend, Emma Pooley (Specialized) is riding the Tour du Grand Montreal stage race.

She?s finished in the bunch on both days so far. Today sees a 3.5-kilometre time trial, followed by a 50-kilometre criterium and tomorrow?s final stage is a lumpy 115-kilometre road race which finishes on top of a climb at Mont-Saint-Hilaire.

RAPHA ALSO SET FOR CANADA

Seven Rapha-Condor-Recycling riders fly out to Canada on Sunday after the Smithfield Nocturne to ride the Tour de Beauce stage race (June 10-15).

Rapha?s seven are Chris Newton, Kristian House, Graham Briggs, Ryan Bonser, Dale Appleby, Rob Partridge and Rhys Lloyd.