Monday's British news round-up
POST-TOUR CRIT WIN FOR CAV
Mark Cavendish just can't stop winning. The six-stage Tour winner was at it again last week in the Draai van der Kaii criterium in Roosendaal, Holland. He crossed the line ahead of Alberto Contador (Astana) and Frank Schleck (Saxo Bank).
Cavendish is due to take a short break before resuming UCI racing at the Tour of Ireland (August 21-23).
IRONMAN WIN FOR GRAVES
Philip Graves, winner of the last three rounds of the Rudy Project Series (and current series-leader), became the youngest ever winner of an Ironman triathlon, winning Ironman Bolton last week.
20-year-old Graves beat defending champion Stephen Bayliss by 2-38, covering the 3.8km swim, 180km ride and 42km run to clock an impressive time of 8-45-52.
Graves sealed victory with a time of 4-57-22 over the undulating 180km course to open a decisive advantage of 7-27 over Bayliss.
THREE SECONDS FOR BLYTHE
Adam Blythe took a string of three second-place finishes last week. First up was in a support race to the PRO Crit in Holland, the elite race was won by Cavendish.
Blythe then took second-place in stages one (b) and two in the Tour of Antwerp. Blythe finished the race 16th overall, just 25 seconds in arrears.
Looking ahead to the remainder of the season, Blythe will ride for Silence-Lotto as a stagiaire, his first appearance due to take place on August 18 in the GP Zottegem.
Four Brits were on the start-line for the gruelling three-day Tour des Pyrenées, won last year by Britain's very own Dan Fleeman.
EC Saint-Etienne Loire rider Andrew Jackson rode to 34th overall, with team-mate Jonathan Rosenbrier finishing 95th.
MagnusMaximusCoffee.com's recent signing Russell Hampton abandoned on the second stage in scorching conditions, but team-mate Dan Patten acquitted himself well in his first taste of high mountains, finishing 60th overall.
Compatriot and fellow Barloworld rider Steven Cummings rode strongly in last week’s GP Industria e Commercio Artigianato Carnaghese, finishing 23rd, two seconds behind winner Francesco Ginanni.
GRUELLING JUNIOR TOUR OF WALES ROUTE IN STORE
The 29th edition of the RIS Junior Tour of Wales appears to be the toughest ever, with two steep three-mile climbs as the sting in the tail of stages two and five on the Saturday and the Monday of the August Bank Holiday (29– 31 August).
The Junior Tour has proved in the past to be the breeding ground for future top British cyclists. Mark Cavendish, the prolific stage winner in this year’s Tour de France, rode the Junior Tour in 2004.
SEE NORTH WALES BY BIKE WITH NEW SUSTRANS MAP
Holiday-makers can combine a personal challenge with a low carbon trip of discovery in 2009 with a new map highlighting the National Cycle Network through North Wales.
The Lôn Las Cymru North challenge ride stretches from Holyhead on Anglesey to Llanidloes and the Severn Valley in the heart of Wales. It takes riders through Snowdonia National Park and the Cambrian mountains along traffic free railway paths, minor roads, forestry tracks and ancient coach roads.
Sustrans’ new map details how to undertake the entire 137-mile route – and accompanies the Lôn Las Cymru South which continues to Cardiff and Chepstow - as well as providing numerous options for a day ride.
The map also highlights most of the other walking and cycling paths in north-west Wales and includes all the major tourist attractions.
Welsh Assembly Minister Alun Ffred Jones will ride part of the Lôn Las Cymru North at Waterloo Port, Lôn Las Menai, near Caernarfon, on August 12 at 11am.
Alun Ffred Jones said: “Wales has a well-deserved reputation as a destination for active holidays and the country is full of places perfect for exploring by bike. This new map also links to the Welsh Assembly Government’s wider commitment to make it easier for people to be more active and healthy as part of daily life.
“I hope it will encourage both visitors and locals alike to get out on two wheels on Lôn Las Cymru North, but remember, you don’t have to do the whole route in one go!”
Sustrans Area Manager for North Wales, Glyn Evans, said: “There are few other rides which offer such a variety of landscapes in such a short space of time, whether cyclists zip through it in three days or enjoy their surroundings at a more leisurely pace over the course of a week.
“The route is fully signed and easy to follow when combined with the new map, so riders will be able to devote all their effort tackling the odd steep hill or enjoy soaking up the views.”
The revised map – which also includes local transport information and gradients – can be ordered from www.sustransshop.org.uk or by calling 0845 1130065.
New interactive maps for the National Cycle Network are also available on Sustrans new-look website at www.sustrans.org.uk
NICHE EXPANSION FOR BURNLEY CLAIMS SPECIALISTS SMITH JONES
Smith Jones solicitors have joined forces with Cycle-Aid, the team behind the Cyclists’ National Helpline.
Smith Jones has seen a dramatic increase in their caseload over the past three years. Cycle-Aid has now joined their portfolio, bringing another area of expertise to East Lancashire.
Preston based since inception in 1988, Cycle-Aid was seeking additional resources in order to expand its services commensurately with the increase in cycling. Its team of lawyers and accident investigators are now able to utilise Smith Jones’ infrastructure.
The introduction was made through Steve Crossley of Business Link Northwest.
Cycle-Aid founder Paul Darlington said:
“Although we have been in business for over twenty years, there has been a huge increase in the level of interest in cycling since 2005. This is due to heightened political awareness, investment, environmental and health factors and sporting success. This caused us to seek the means by which we could expand in concert yet retain our traditional approach”.
“An association with an organisation such as Smith Jones is ideal because it provides a hub from which our demand led expansion can continue.
“We have over the years won millions of pounds for thousands of cyclists at no cost to them. This association ensures that we can maintain this essential service”.