Team Bike Sale
Tour Series winning streak comes to an end in Wales
Crashes to Jonny McEvoy and Dean Windsor at crucial times in fifth round of the Halfords Tour Series in Aberystwyth brought an end to our winning streak in the series.
The team came into the race with two individual wins and four team wins and at the team meeting overlooking the beach front in Aberystwyth, Sporting Director Julian Winn told his riders he wanted them to go out and make the race. And that is just what they did with Ian Wilkinson attacking alone after only a few laps.
His move made the other teams chase but in the searing heat and in front of a big crowd, Wilkinson ploughed on and opened up a good gap on his rivals. The pace behind was so quick that in the chase group, not only was the peloton splitting but riders were also crashing out, mainly by going wide into the barriers as they tried to get round the tight twisty circuit too fast or, in the case of Matt Cronshaw (Node 4), crashing trying to avoid a rider on the deck on the racing line.
Wilkinson though was eventually reeled in but by then the field had split and he was one of three Endura Racing riders in the lead group. The others being Dean Windsor and Scott Thwaites. Jonny McEvoy had crashed earlier and with Ian Bibby, was marooned in the chase group.
With other top teams so well represented in the break, it was important for the riders to keep their place in the break and Dean Windsor not only did that, but was also being his aggressive self and getting in moves off the front. But a rider needs luck and Dean's got worse in Aberystwyth when his bike just went from under him for no apparent reason.
That was the end of the evening's challenge for the team prize. A group with Bibby and McEvoy got close to catching the first chase group which would have given them a fighting chance but it wasn't to be and they finished fourth on the night with Wilkinson their best placed rider in 6th. Scott Thwaites was 15th, Ian Bibby 17th, and Jonny McEvoy 19th. With no laps out, Dean Windsor had no option but to retire from the race.
It’s better to be the aggressor rather than trying to chase. I was waiting someone to come across and knew they would speed up for the first sprint and get some time back and that two or three might come across then. I eased up a little bit because you can’t keep riding at that speed on your own and all of a sudden they were on me and there were only three of us in the group. Scott and Dean were then going with everything whilst I was having a breather and then Dean attacked at the end and but then crashed.
I felt fine racing for the second night in a row. I had a few attacks to see how the legs were and test out the field and was lining up to do a good one at the end but it never happened.
One second I was on my bike, the next I was on the ground. I came into the corner and was just about to throw it in and before I knew it I was on the ground. It could have been a gust of wind, I don’t know but I hadn’t even really turned the bike into the corner at that stage. I’ll be interested in seeing the TV footage to see what happened.
Unfortunately I took Jimmy out and I don’t like wrecking some one’s race but I don’t know what happened. It was such a shame as I really wanted to go one better than Redditch (2nd) so to go out like that was a shame. My bike was destroyed so there was no chance of getting back in. I’m sorry to have let the team down but crashes happen and we needed all of our riders to count and hopefully we didn’t lose too many at the end.
Julian Winn (Sporting Director):
We had bad luck after bad luck tonight which can always happen in a bike race. Ian’s attack at the start was perfect and then the trouble was that we lost a man with Jonny which put us down on the numbers straight away. I think if we hadn’t lost Jonny, the situation could have been a bit different because we would have then had three or four in the counting group.
Dean got away and then he crashed with two to go so it’s a bit of a bad luck story but that’s bike racing. It wasn’t about a lack of trying, we were always aware that things like this can happen. It’s disappointing because you build up such a momentum.
You can catch all of the action from The Halfords Tour Series exclusively on ITV4 once again this summer - click here to see the up-to-date transmission schedule.
Click here for results and series standings from the Halfords Tour Series
Report and photos by Larry Hickmott | www.VeloUK.net