British road race round-up (July 19-20): News and results from around the UK
Richard Handley (Rapha Condor-JLT) secured victory in the Ryedale Grand Prix in North Yorkshire on Sunday, pipping team-mate Mike Cuming to the line after a near race-long break.
The pair were part of a five-man break which went clear early in the race. Initially they had a third Rapha rider in Hugh Carthy, as well as Mathieu Boulo (Team Raleigh) and Alex Peters, the Madison Genesis rider who was third in the overall Elite Road Series going into the race.
The quintet gained upwards of three minutes as they ploughed round the 93 miles, but eventually the pace proved too much for Peters and Boulo, leaving the three men in black to plough on.
But hopes of a 1-2-3 were dashed when Carthy cracked and dropped back on the last lap.
As they headed for the line Handley edged ahead of Carthy to take the win by seven seconds, while the previous week’s Stockton Grand Prix winner Russ Downing (NFTO Pro Cycling) took third spot, 1-35 down, in a bunch gallop for the line.
Nicola Juniper had already been crowned as the Women’s Elite Road Series champion before the Ryedale Grand Prix had started, but she underlined her dominance by taking the win.
The Echelon-Rotor rider made a strong start to the race and quickly put a minute between her and the chasing bunch.
She continued to build on her lead and rode the entire race out on her own, crossing the line a minute-and-a-half ahead of second-placed Laura Massey of Epic Cycles.
The race also incorporated the Women’s National Junior Championship, and it was 17-year-old Matrix Fitness rider Bethany Hayward, who finished third overall to take the Junior crown. RST riders Elizabeth Holden and Amy Gornall, who finished fifth and eighth overall respectively, took the other two places on the women’s junior podium.
Tristan Robbins made a late charge to take the National Junior Men’s Road Race Championships title in Ampleforth on Saturday. Robbins, riding for BH Solidor, dropped RST’s Nathan Draper and Haribo Beacon’s Tom Bayliss in the final 200 metres to power to first place.
Haribo’s Joe Shaw and Adept Precision’s Charlie Tanfield did much of the attacking in the race and at one point, Tanfield was out on his own with a gap of 45 seconds over the bunch.
But with two laps to go, Tanfield was caught and overhauled by Bayliss and Draper. It looked to be one of those two who would take the title but it was Robbins who timed his attack just right to get the better of them.
Before the events in Ryedale unfolded, Yorkshire was also host to another prestigious race as Mike Northey of Madison Genesis took top spot in the Beverley Grand Prix, part of the Elite Circuit Series, on Friday evening.
The Colne Grand Prix in Lancashire on Wednesday night was also part of the Elite Circuit Series and that was won by Rapha Condor-JLT rider Graham Briggs.
The series visits Sheffield on Wednesday evening before concluding at the Wales Open Criterium the following week.
In Hertfordshire, Chris McNamara was part of a three-man break which pulled clear of the bunch in the Kenneth Lush Memorial Road Race on Sunday.
The 39-year-old Pedal Heaven Colbornes RT man was able to beat rivals Ashley Cox and Danny Axford to the line to win.
Also on Sunday, in round ten of the CDNW Road Race League held in Cumbria, 21-year-old Rigmar Racer Jack Barrett edged out Andrew Whitehall to clinch victory.
David Anderson of Granite City RT won the Moray Firth Stage Race after winning the prologue and coming second in the first stage.
And Matt Clarke (London Dynamo) won the Sotonia CC Criterium at Winchester on Sunday. He edged ahead of Callum Gillespie (Cycleworks) by four seconds, with Juston Hoy (Felt Colbornes) third.