London Nocturne winner Alex Dowsett, Adam Blythe and Roger Hammond this week added their name of entrants for tonight’s Leazes Criterium, which gets the Northern Rock Cyclone weekend underway.
Mark Cavendish confirmed his participation in the race, being held in Leazes Park, immediately to the north of Newcastle United’s St James’ Park stadium, a few weeks ago, and has now been joined by three other WorldTour riders.
This year is the sixth running of the hour-long race, and so far riders from Endura, Sigma Sport-Specialized and Raleigh have also signed up.
The elite race begins at 8pm, but the action gets underway with youth events at 6.15pm.
Three days of cycling in the north-east culminates with the National Championships road race on Sunday.
Thwaites looking for U23 National title after recent purple patch
Wednesday’s Otley Criterium winner Scott Thwaites (Endura) has told Cycling Weekly that he has his sights firmly set on the U23 National title in Newcastle this weekend.
“I’ll be going for an U23 win,” he said. “That’s much more realistic than winning the race. It’ll be completely dominated by Sky, so I’ll ride according to that – staying at the front and trying to stay in the mix.”
“It’ll be hard because Luke Rowe is going really well,” he continued. “But I’ve been going really well and I feel good.”
Thwaites came from nowhere earlier this year to win the Lincoln GP, and backed that victory up with a series of good results in the Tour Series, including winning the Stoke-on-Trent race.
Following the national championships he plans to ease off, before building his form again for later in the season.
“I’m going to let up a bit. I don’t want to just keep going and then completely blow up. I’m conscious of the fact that I can’t keep this form going forever,” he said.
Thwaites takes the Otley Crit on Wednesday night
Riders complete Deliotte’s Ride Across Britain for charity
Olympic and Paralympic stars James Cracknell, Sarah Storey and Danny Crates helped raise over £700,000 for the British Paralympic Association by taking part in Deloitte’s Ride Across Britain last week.
The nine day, 1,000 mile challenge was devised by Cracknell and was split into stages, allowing the 500 participants to either complete the full distance or take part in a day-long 105 mile ride.
Storey rode the fundraiser, which began in John o’Groats on June 11 and arrived in Land’s End last Sunday, in 2010 and returned for a second year.
Cracknell returned to the saddle less than a year since his life-threatening accident while riding across America.
Ryedale Rumble partners Help the Heroes
The Ryedale Rumble (August 7) ranks as both one of the toughest and most popular sportives in the UK.
There’s a big difference this year too, due to new partnership with Help for Heroes, which helps wounded soldiers.
Ride the longest route with 10 people sponsoring 10p a mile and that means £110 for the charity.
Starting from the pretty surroundings of Ampleforth College, there’s a choice of three routes through challenging, charming North York Moors and Howardian Hills: 49, 71 or 111 miles.
With the longest leg including the climbs of Boltby Bank, Blakey Bank and Rosedale Chimney, it’s certainly no picnic either.
This is likely to be the last Rumble till 2013 too, as the sportive clashes with the Olympics next summer.
To enter, visit www.ryedalerumble.co.uk
Bike up-for-grabs in Friday auction
To celebrate Britain’s Bike Week (June 18-26), Going Going Bike are today auctioning off a No Logo single-speed bike.
With a starting bid of £5, with increments of just £2 and no reserve, interest in the colourful machine is expected to be high.
The auction ends at 4.30pm, so you’ve got to be quick!
British news round-up, June 17: Endura talent Thwaites reflects on first Tour Series
British news round-up, June 10: Riders head to London for the IG Markets Nocturne
British news round-up, June 3: Endura and Motorpoint vow to hit back at Tour Series