NATIONAL TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPS UPDATE
Victoria Pendleton scored an historic victory on Wednesday, by winning the women?s sprint event, adding the title to her gold medals at World and Olympic level. She comfortably beat Anna Blyth and Helen Scott.
In the men?s scratch race, it was Chris Newton who took the title, ahead of Andrew Magnier and Jon Mould. The women?s scratch was an aggressive race from start to finish, with some riders sustaining a heavy crash. It was Hannah Rich who emerged victorious, with Victoria Pendleton making a rare appearance in the scratch.
In the men?s open sprint, it was Matt Crampton, who held off Craig McClean who made an unsuccessful attempt to come round the young rider on the banking on the final corner.
Olympic bronze-medallist Steven Burke held off with Rob Hayles and Michael Hutchinson in the men?s individual pursuit, with a time of 4-25-014, two seconds ahead of Hayles.
1. Victoria Pendleton (SIS.com)
2. Anna Blyth (VC St Raphael)
3. Helen Scott (Halesowen)
Men?s scratch race:
1. Chris Newton (Rapha Condor Recycling)
2. Andrew Magnier (Brooks Cycles)
3. Jon Mould (Agiskoviner.com)
1. Hannah Rich (Pinarello RT)
2. Alexandra Greenfield (Pinarello RT)
3. Lucy Martin (Dolan RT)
Men?s open sprint:
1. Matt Crampton (SIS.com)
2. Craig MacClean (Plowman Craven)
3. David Daniell (Cleveland Wheelers)
Men?s open pursuit:
1. Steven Burke (100% ME)
2. Rob Hayles (Halfords Bikehut)
3. Michael Hutchinson (In Gear Quickvit)
RECORD NUMBERS AT TOUR OF BRITAIN
This year?s Tour of Britain was the most popular edition yet, according to an official press release.
Partly as a result of the ?Beijing effect? and partly because the race enjoyed mostly good weather in its eight-day journey around Britain, record numbers were recorded at both the roadside and for those watching daily coverage on ITV4.
?We?ve been delighted with the performance of the Tour of Britain in its debut year on ITV4,? said Mark Sharman, director of ITV news and sport. ?It?s been an exciting event and has attracted consistently high viewing figures to the channel in line with those that we have seen for the Tour de France earlier this year?.
CROSS TROPHY KICKS OFF
The cyclo-cross season is well and truly upon us, with the first round of the 2008-2009 National Trophy in Abergavenny, South Wales.
Some of the country?s top cross riders will be taking part in the senior men?s race, including Paul Oldham and Rob Jebb.
GIVE IT A REST
In conjunction with the London Freewheel event this weekend, Carshalton (in South West London) is organising its own ?Give your car the day off? festival on Sunday September 21.
Held in the high street car park, several activities will be on offer, including a ?clean air zone? (where you can relax in a deck chair in a traffic free zone), a ?health and wellbeing zone? (where you can test your fitness), a ?fun zone? and a ?community zone? (where there will be a barbecue).
RUSSELL DOWNING: STAYING PUT, OR MOVING ON?
After such domination at home, and a few superb results overseas, such as three stage wins at the Cinturon Ciclista in Majorca and another, plus second overall, at the Tour of Ireland, speculation that Candi TV-Pinarello rider Russell Downing could move to a bigger team is inevitable.
But he said: ?I haven?t signed anything but I don?t think there?s much out there.
?It?s been a great year results-wise, press-wise and I am really happy.
?I have been honest with Phil [Griffiths, the team manager and owner] and I know he wouldn?t stand in my way but it?d have to be a big offer. I?ve really enjoyed riding for this team and working with Phil.
?We?ve got a new sponsor on board and hopefully that?ll allow us to do a bit more abroad. After the Worlds I?ll sit down with Phil and we?ll sort it out.
?It?s like Phil has had a new lease of life too. He?s loved being involved with a team again and it?s a bit of a reward for all the success he?s had building up his company [distributors, Yellow].?
MARTIN SELECTED FOR IRISH UNDER-23 SQUAD
Not strictly British news, but Dan Martin is a former British national junior road race champion so it’s interesting to note the 22-year-old has been selected to ride for Ireland’s under-23 team at the World Championships.
Martin has ridden strongly in his first year as a pro with Garmin-Chipotle this season, winning the Route du Sud, so it is a surprise to see him in the under-23 race.
However, UCI rules permit riders who are under 23 to race in the event as long as they are not registered with ProTour teams (stagiaires are still eligible).
The loop hole means that a rider like John-Lee Augustyn is set to line up for the under-23 race next week, despite
being extremely experienced when compared to the rest of the field. Augustyn finished the Tour de France riding for Barloworld this year.
Though eligible, it raises the question whether it is appropriate for riders such as Augustyn and Martin to ride the under-23 event.
BRITISH LINE-UPS FOR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
Tuesday, September 23 Men’s under-23 time
Wednesday, September 24 Women’s time trial
Thursday, September 25 Men’s elite time trial
Friday, September 26 Men’s under-23 road race
Saturday, September 27 Women’s road race
Sunday, September 28 Men’s road race