Number 23: Ian Bibby
Last year’s position: N/A
The 23-year-old Motorpoint rider (he’s not 24 until December 20) has had a great season and must be on Team Sky’s radar for the future.
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He started the year by winning the national cyclo-cross title in Sutton Park, Birmingham, although it was a close battle with Jody Crawforth and Paul Oldham.
But on the road he began to make some big steps forward. At the Cinturon Ciclista a Mallorca in the spring, he won the prologue and was second on another stage, which helped him to 11th place overall. He ten took fifth in the Tour de Bretagne, a tough proving ground inhabited by some of the best up-and-coming riders and some grizzled old pros (like the eventual winner, BBOX Bouygues Telecom man Franck Bouyer). In the summer, Bibby was eighth overall in the Vuelta a Leon.
On the home front, he had some decent results – fifth at the Lincoln Grand Prix and second in the East Yorkshire Classic.
But his inclusion in our countdown owes much to a brilliant second place on one of the toughest stages of this year’s Tour of Britain. Bibby rode superbly to get in the winning break on stage three to Swansea. Then he matched the likes of Michael Albasini of HTC-Columbia up Constitution Hill and finished second on the stage.
You get the feeling there’s plenty more to come.
Cycling Weekly’s Top British Riders of 2010 advent calendar: We will reveal one rider per day behind the virtual doors of our sparkly advent calendar from Wednesday December 1 to Christmas Eve, Friday December 24. The top eight will then be revealed in Cycling Weekly magazine’s final issue of the year, which will be in the shops on December 30 2010.