LUKE ROWE SECOND IN EUROS

There were strong performances from young British riders at the weekend in the under-23 European championships in Italy, the highlight being Welshman Luke Rowe?s second place in the junior road race.

He crossed the line in torrential rain seconds after Frenchman Johan Le Bon. Rowe was also 12th in the junior men?s time trial, with Erick Rowsell 13th.

Ben Swift just missed the podium in the under-23 road race in contrasting blazing sunshine, finishing fourth after riding at the head of the race all day with GB team-mate Peter Kennaugh. France?s Cyril Gautier finished 24 seconds ahead of the bunch to claim the gold medal.

Katie Colclough came within eight seconds of a medal in the junior women?s time trial, finishing 1-01 behind winner Valerya Konenko of Ukraine for fourth place. The other British rider, Corrine Hall, was ninth at 1-18. Colclough also finished eighth in the junior women?s road race, won by Valentina Scandolara of Italy.

Alex Dowsett finished 13th in the under-23 time trial, 1-15 adrift of winner Adriano Malori from the host nation.

RAS DE CYMRU

Emma Pooley won the final stage of the five-day Ras de Cymru on the hilltop finish at Llangynidr. Pooley attacked on the final climb to finish more than 30 seconds ahead of the second finisher and over a minute ahead of Nicole Cooke.

Cooke (Halfords Bikehut) was top women?s finisher overall, in 10th place, while veteran Tim Carter, guesting for the GB women?s team, took overall victory after finishing in the top ten in all bar one stage.

BRITISH PARALYMPIC SQUAD NAMED

ParalympicsGB today announced the 12 riders that will represent Britain in Beijing. The Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games open on September 6 and close on September 17. The track cycling events at the Games take place at the Laoshan Velodrome in Beijing from September 7 to 10 with the road cycling taking place from September 12 to 14.

Mark Bristow

Jody Cundy

Anthony Kappes

Anthony Kappes’ pilot rider: Barney Storey

Darren Kenny

Aileen McGlynn

Aileen McGlynn’s pilot rider: Ellen Hunter

Rachel Morris

Simon Richardson

David Stone

Sarah Storey

Richard Waddon

Blackpool rocked for Russell. Bitterly disappointed by mechanical mishaps in the national champs, he bounced back in style to notch up yet another Premier Calendar win, this time on the Golden Mile.

Deano got stuck in the queue for the donkeys and his ?kiss me quick? hat held him back in the final few miles. Meanwhile, Russ got in the driving seat of the big dipper, waved his arms around and squealed like a hog.

With three rounds to go, plus the Tour of Britain still to come, the latest score is: Russell 7, Dean 3

Pinarello piled on the points again.

With Ian Stannard (Landbouwkredit) taking out the five for second place, Rob Hayles landed the consolation point for third to keep Halfords Bikehut in the running.

Indeed, the dynamic duo of Hayles and Tom Southam are perilously close to edging out the 14-man Rapha team from second place. The skinsuited crusader and his sidekick are firing up the Batmobile to great effect.

Plowmans are currently out to lunch.

LATEST STANDINGS

1. Pinarello 86pts

2. Rapha-Condor-Recycling 35pts

3. Halfords Bikehut 34pts

4. Team 100% ME 14pts

5. Plowman Craven 11pts

NOCTURNE GOES NORTH

Following on from the success of the Smithfield Nocturne comes the Salford Nocturne event due to take place on Saturday August 30.

The criterium course has been designed to provide a real spectacle for spectators, with a route that runs around the Lowry museum, past the canal adjacent to the Manchester United football stadium and then through the pedestrian zone of the Salford Quays complex.

The race will be the first event to take place after the Olympics and will be an ideal opportunity for British riders to show off any gold medals won in Beijing.

www.salfordnocturne.co.uk