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Chris Newton clearly enjoys the racing at the Ras. Today?s victory in stage three at Lisdoonvarna was the tenth of his career in the event. He?s also won the overall twice.

?It?s my kind of racing,? said the Rapha-Condor-Recycling rider. ?It?s stop-start all day, even when there?s a break established there are jumps from the peloton.?

It is, he agreed, not unlike a giant points race on the road, with constant attacks to be made or marked and riders firing off left and right. With the points race at the Olympic Games in Beijing the big goal on the horizon, Newton is happy to be back racing and winning.

Today?s was his first victory since breaking his collarbone in training back in March. ?I saw the specialist last week and although the bone has not all fused together, it?s as strong as a normal collarbone now,? he said.

Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling missed the big break of the day, which went clear with around 50 kilometres remaining. ?I got across with Dave McCann, Roger Aiken and Paidi O?Brien. We [Rapha] didn?t have anyone in the move and needed someone up there,? said Newton.

That move was the springboard for the eventual race-winning attack. McCann put his head down and went for it. Newton, spotting it was the right move to follow, went with him.

?They were all jumping around and there was that moment of hesitation. It wasn?t a soft attack, as such, but when they?re playing about like that, there?s always a chance.?

Newton remembered the finish in Lisdoonvarna from his win there in 2005. ?I knew it was uphill from about 500 metres to go, then it levels off with 200 to go so you need to save a bit for that.

?There was a tailwind, so I got a good jump and knew it?d be hard for him to get on my wheel.?

Newton finished a couple of seconds clear of McCann.

The Ras is nothing if not unpredictable. More than a minute down this morning, Newton has jumped up to sixth overall, just 18 seconds behind the new leader Mark Cassidy of Ireland, who rides for the An Post team.

It?s not easy to set, or stick to, a gameplan. ?It?s very difficult to guess what?s going to happen. It?s just important to keep the numbers up there. With only five riders in each team it?s a dynamic race, you can?t watch everyone, but if you?ve got four or five up there overall you?re in a strong position,? Newton added.

Cassidy now leads overall, with Rapha?s Rob Partridge second, just three seconds behind. His team-mate Newton is sixth, with Monday?s stage winner, Dean Downing, also Rapha, tenth at 1-22.

Downing keeps the green points jersey, Newton has taken the lead in the king of the mountains competition, and Dale Appleby is leading the under-23 competition.

?You could say we?ve had a good day,? said Rapha?s team manager John Herety.


2. Rob Partridge ((Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling) at 3sec

3. Alex Higham (Plowman Craven) at 5sec

4. Andrew Bye (Surrey League) at 17sec

5. Kieran Page (Pezula) same time

6. Chris Newton (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling) at 18sec

10. Dean Downing (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling) at 1-22

17. Evan Oliphant (Plowman Craven) at 1-25

18. Dale Appleby (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling) same time

31. Daniel Lloyd (An Post) at 2-52

34. Kit Gilham (Kinesis) at 2-53

37. Tom Last (Kinesis)

40. Matt Cronshaw (Kinesis)

42. Kristian House (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling)

43. Simon Richardson (Plowman Craven) all same time


1. Dean Downing (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling)


1. Chris Newton (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling)


1. Dale Appleby (Stena-Rapha-Condor-Recycling)

Swipe to scroll horizontally

British stage winners and best-placed overall in the past ten years at the Ras


No stage wins

Best overall 5th Chris Newton


2 stage wins

? Chris Newton, stage one, Enniscorthy

? Recycling.co.uk, stage six team time trial, An Cheathru Rua

Best overall 1st Kristian House


4 stage wins

? Chris Newton, stage two, Tubbercurry

? Chris Newton, stage three, Lisdoonvarna

? Malcolm Elliott, stage four, Templemore

? Chris Newton, stage six, Rathdrum

Best overall 1st Chris Newton


2 stage wins

? Malcolm Elliott, stage five, Millstreet

? Malcolm Elliott, stage eight, Phoenix Park

Best overall 5th Malcolm Elliott


2 stage wins

? Kevin Dawson, stage four, Letterkenny

? Chris Newton, stage five, Buncrana

Best overall 1st Chris Newton


5 stage wins

? Chris Newton, stage one, Ballinamore

? John Tanner, stage two, Nenagh

? Paul Manning, stage six, Arklow

? Chris Newton, stage seven, Baltinglass

? Chris Newton, stage eight, Phoenix Park

Best overall 2nd Chris Newton


No stage wins

Best overall 1st Paul Manning


3 stage wins

? Julian Winn, stage three, Oughterard

? Gethin Butler, stage five, Kenmare

? John Tanner, stage seven, Enniscorthy

Best overall 1st Julian Winn


1 stage win

? Jon Clay, stage two, Charleville

Best overall 4th Richard Hobby


3 stage wins

? Jeff Wright, stage two, Tubbercurry

? Dave Williams, stage three, Westport

? Jeff Wright, stage eight, Ballymore Eustace

Best overall 4th Wayne Randle


Stage three report: Chris Newton beats David McCann

Ras Reaction: Dean Downing on winning stage two

Stage two report: Dean Downing beats Evan Oliphant at the finish

Stage one report: Isle of Man's Hanson wins Ras first stage

2008 FBD Insurance Ras preview

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Sports journalist Lionel Birnie has written professionally for Sunday Times, Procycling and of course Cycling Weekly. He is also an author, publisher, and co-founder of The Cycling Podcast. His first experience covering the Tour de France came in 1999, and he has presented The Cycling Podcast with Richard Moore and Daniel Friebe since 2013. He founded Peloton Publishing in 2010 and has ghostwritten and published the autobiography of Sean Kelly, as well as a number of other sports icons.