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Women's Tour Series launched

Details of a new four-round criterium event for women that will run alongside the Halfords Tour Series have been announced.

The Johnson Health Tech Women's Grand Prix Series will feature as a support race at four of the ten Tour Series events held in May and June.

Teams have been invited to enter for the event, with the selection details being announced shortly.

The venues have yet to be disclosed, but CW understands that the women's races will be held in Durham, Peterborough, Stoke-on-Trent and one other location.

Series Director Mick Bennett said: "I am looking forward to officially launching the Halfords Tour Series, now in its third year, in April. 

"The event continues to grow and the launch of the Johnson Health Tech Women's Grand Prix Series is a superb addition. I am sure 2011 will be spectacular."

The weekend ahead: strong fields for the Roy Thame Cup and Jock Wadley Memorial

Exciting racing looks inevitable at this weekend's Roy Thame Cup (Saturday) and Jock Wadley Memorial (Sunday).

Despite both events being categorised National B, the top British teams are all sending strong squads to compete. It's a nice return to prestigious fields for these esteemed early-season races.

Fresh from a fine victory at the Eddie Soens Memorial last weekend, James Stewart (Team UK Youth) will ride both races seeking to pick up his second win of 2011.

Despite winning both races last year through Darren Lapthorne and Jon Tiernan-Locke, Rapha Condor- Sharp signed up late for the Jock Wadley, only confirming their entry in the past week.

100% ME, Team Raleigh, Motorpoint and CyclePremier are all riding both races, while Sigma Sport- Specialized (see below) are just taking the start in the Jock Wadley.

The 23rd Roy Thame Cup is run over a rolling circuit near Charndon, Buckinghamshire that encourages aggressive racing. Lapthorne held off Stewart and new Motorpoint signing Andy Magnier last year.

Organisers had no problems filling their eighty available places for the event; Motorpoint's Malcom Elliot will not be riding after his entry was made after the field was full.

Held on a course around the Abberton Reservoir, Colchester, the wind is always a factor in the Jock Wadley Memorial, but can help escape groups as much as it hinders them.

Andy Lyons (Twenty 3c Orbea) is looking for his third win in the race, with last year's third place finisher Grant Bayton leading the Wilier/Go Self Drive team.

Essex-based Twenty-3C Orbea will be looking to do well on local roads

Sigma Sport faces Paris-Troyes

Meanwhile, Sigma Sport-Specialized's racing schedule gets underway on Sunday in the UCI 1.2-rated Paris-Troyes race.

They will be up against the likes of top French outfits FDJ and Saur-Sojasun, as well as the best amateur squads. Nevertheless, having here raced last year, Stephens knows better what to expect in the 172km event.

"I know it will split up early on: last year, it was in seven echelons" he said. "Wouter [Sybrandy] is going really strong, he needs to keep his head up and get in the front group."

"After the first 50km, the race tends to settle down a bit. It would be good to get Wouter, Simon Richardson and Kit Gilham up there." "We're looking forward it, it's the first chance to see where we're really at. It'd be nice to get inside the top ten," he added.

Sigma Sport have also been accepted to Breton races, the Tro Bro Leon and Tour du Finistere in mid-April.

Rapha second in Singapore

Dean Windsor continued Rapha Condor- Sharp's impressive early season form by taking a fine second place at the OCBC Criterium in Singapore.

The Australian was pipped in a sprint finish by Androni Giocattoli neo-pro Omar Bertazzo.

But Windsor was delighted with his performance in the floodlight race held on the country's Formula One circuit, especially after a knee problem hindered his training over the winter.

"It would have been amazing to pull this one off, but second in my first race of 2011 is still a great start," he said.

"I think I've come out of the Aussie summer exactly where I want to be," he added.

Windsor was part of an eight-man breakaway that was out front for most of the race. However, Bertazzo's team worked brilliantly in the closing stages, and their efforts were rewarded as they caught the leading group with 500m remaining.

Having driven the break on throughout the race, Windsor felt that his efforts in the earlier stages of the race hindered his finishing sprint.

"We (the break) had worked so well together all day, but I think we must have just hesitated a bit coming in to the finish. It had been such a fast hard race that his [Bertazzo's] fresh legs after being in the bunch all day made him that bit quicker".

Garmin-Cervelo's Cameron Meyer took third, while Ian Bibby took tenth for Motorpoint.

Dowsett hits Essex time trial scene

Local patrons of the Essex testing scene may be surprised to see Team Sky professional Alex Dowsett racing some time-trials in his home patch this week.

"The Eastern County CA made me an honorary member; I won't count for series standings, but I'm allowed to enter their races," he said.

The U23 world time trial champion is last off in Sunday's Lea Valley CC 25.

Dowsett is also keen to challenge for the National 10 this year, though the Tour of Luxembourg clashes with the ‘25' race.

"I'm down as reserve for the Tour of California. If someone's injured or sick, that rules me out of the 10," he said.

Extra Wiggle Super Sportive launched

Wiggle have added an extra sportive to their Super Series after tickets for one event were sold in record time.

The New Forest Spring Sportive in Brockenhurst, Hampshire will now run on Saturday 16 April, in addition to the sold-out sportive there 24 hours later.

All 1,200 places for the original event sold out in record time, but there are just 500 tickets for the newly-announced Saturday ride.

See for more.

Sarah and Barney Storey to become official cycling ambassadors for CNP
Professional Leading UK sports supplement manufacturer CNP Professional has unveiled Sarah and Barney Storey as their new cycling ambassadors.

The couple will be helping to raise awareness of just how important it is for athletes to correctly fuel their bodies for training, racing and recovery. 

Horizon Fitness rider Sarah Storey, who is currently racing in Italy at the world Para-cycling championships, said: "I am delighted to become an Ambassador for CNP Professional. As a company leading the sports nutrition world with the highest quality products, which are currently helping me to achieve my potential as an athlete, I wanted to be able to pass on this inside knowledge to other athletes."

Husband and Paralympic gold-medal winning pilot Barney Storey added: "As an athlete with type one, insulin-dependent diabetes, finding great nutritional supplements that can support me in controlling my blood sugar for the good of my sports performance is very important."  

For more information on CNP Professional please visit


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