JLT-Condor dominate opening races of Tour Series

Chris Lawless won the opening criterium of the series in the Ramsey after his JLT-Condor team were the team time trial victors

JLT-Condor won both the team time trial and the opening criterium of the 2016 Pearl Izumi Tour Series in the Isle of Man on Thursday.

The men in black covered the 1.5km circuit in 3:54.520 in the TTT, just under two seconds quicker than defending champions Madison-Genesis.

>>> Everything you need to know about the Pearl Izumi Tour Series 2016

Shortly afterwards, under the warm sun in Ramsey, Chris Lawless proved the fastest in a six-man breakaway to take individual honours in the hour-long plus five laps circuit race, with JLT's five riders returning the lowest cumulative time to be the fastest team.

"It was a good start, you can’t deny that. But it’s just that, a good start. It gives us a base to work on," John Herety, JLT's team manager told Cycling Weekly.

Lawless was part of an early race six-man break and despite its size being reduced and added to throughout, he edged out Raleigh's Sebastián Mora and NFTO's Dale Appleby at the end.

>>> NFTO’s start to 2016 ‘couldn’t have gone any better’

Morgan Kneisky (Raleigh-GAC) leads the points championships after one round, a title he won in 2015.

Herety added: "I don’t think it’s big headed [to say JLT have one of the best teams competing]. It's not rocket science to look at a spreadsheet at the riders who have won in the Tour Series and criterium races.

"Our sponsors want us to go for the Tour Series and they backed us. As a consequence we have a really good team for riding for the team and individual classification."

Lawless tells us about his cycling scars

It means after round one JLT have 20 points, Madison have 18 and NFTO are five shy of the leaders in third. Team Wiggins were absent from racing because of other commitments but they will begin their campaign in Motherwell on Tuesday, the second round of the Series and the opening round of the Women's Matrix Fitness GP Series.





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