After two fruitless days at the Tour of Britain, Rapha-Condor got a rider and their distinctive black jersey in the action on Stage three when Australia’s Darren Lapthorne jumped across to the break.
The former Aussie national champion worked hard with Rob Ruygh of Vaconsoleil to get across to Thomas De Grendt (Topsport-Vlaanderen) and German national champion Martin Reimer (Cervelo).
The four never got more than four minutes ahead because most of the other teams wanted a bunch sprint but Lapthorne loved being in the action. It also earned Rapha-Condor some excellent coverage on television.
“I saw two guys up the road and it was just close enough to jump across to and luckily the peloton didn’t react so, yeah, I like that type of move,” the likeable Aussie said.
“It was good just to be in the race, the last couple of days I haven’t been feeling great and just to be back in it was definitely a good feeling.”
Unfortunately the break was pulled back 25km from the finish after the Joker-Bianchi team generously gave Rabobank some help on the front. Lapthorne was hoping to finish in the bunch but a double puncture left him stopped at the side of the road and he finished 12 minutes behind stage winner Edvald Boasson Hagen (Columbia).
At least that meant that Lapthorne’s team mates were all waiting for him at the bus and he deservedly received applause and congratulations as he slumped down into a chair.