Gabriel Cullaigh sprints to win 2018 CiCLE Classic (gallery)

Team Wiggins rider takes the victory in the 2018 edition of CiCLE Classic, which famously uses sections of rough farm tracks - All photos by Andy Jones

Gabriel Cullaigh (Team Wiggins) took the victory in the 2018 edition of the CiCLE Classic on Sunday, a gruelling race that features numerous sectors of rough farm tracks.

After a fast start in Oakham, a break of four riders finally formed as the 188.3-kilometre race headed towards the first of 11 farm track sectors.

The race settled into a pattern for a long stretch, with the break enjoying some freedom in front of the peloton.

The break on Northfield Lane. Photo by Andy Jones

However, the gap started coming down after the first pass of the Somerberg sector and an attack by Cullaigh’s team-mate Tom Pidcock and the quartet were caught.

A new lead group of seven formed, comprising Cullaigh, Karol Domagalski (One Pro Cycling), Koos Jeroen Kers (WPGA Amsterdam), Erick Rowsell (Madison Genesis), Tom Stewart (JLT Condor), Connor Swift (Madison-Genesis) and Peter Williams (One Pro Cycling).

Heading into the race’s closing stages, Domagalski was particularly active in fracturing the lead group – ultimately with himself and Cullaigh fighting it out for the win in Melton Mowbray.

Cullaigh edged ahead in the sprint, with Domagalski in second and Kers completing the podium in third.

“Chuffed to bits!” said Cullaigh afterwards. “A great day out round Rutland, finished off with the hands in the air. Us lads [Team Wiggins] nailed it today, all over everything all race.”

>>> Ardennes Classics 2018 ratings: How did each team perform?


CiCLE Classic 2018, 188.3km
1. Gabriel Cullaigh (Team Wiggins)
2. Karol Domagalski (One Pro Cycling), at 1 sec
3. Koos Jeroen Kers (WPGA Amsterdam), at 4 secs
4. Connor Swift (Madison Genesis), at 38 secs
5. Erick Rowsell (Madison Genesis), at 56 secs
6. Peter Williams (One Pro Cycling), at same time
7. Tom Stewart (JLT Condor), at 1-01
8. Emils Liepins (One Pro Cycling), at 1-10
9. Tom Pidcock (Team Wiggins)
10. Tobyn Horton (Madison Genesis), at same time

Break on Somerberg. Photo by Andy Jones

Peloton during the 2018 CiCLE Classic. Photo by Andy Jones

Peloton navigate Stygate Lane. Photo by Andy Jones

Tom Pidcock on the Somerberg. Photo by Andy Jones

Support for Team Wiggins. Photo by Andy Jones

Gabriel Cullaigh on the front. Photo by Andy Jones

Gabriel Cullaigh wins the sprint. Photo by Andy Jones

… and a large pork pie. Photo by Andy Jones

2018 CICLE Classic podium: Kers, Cullaigh and Domagalski. Photo by Andy Jones

A well-deserved drink at the finish. Photo by Andy Jones