Team UK Youth made an emphatic start to the 2013 domestic road racing season, placing riders in the top six positions at the Perfs Pedal Race in Hampshire on Sunday.
Marcin Bialoblocki secured the victory for UK Youth, crossing the line along after breaking clear of his breakaway rivals mid-way through the race, while his five team-mates in the break bossed the sprint finish and completed a clean sweep.
The 29-year-old Polish rider, who now lives in Somerset, placed second in the race last year as a Node 4 rider, while UK Youth’s Chris Opie took the win. But he went one better this year, and looked in great form as he powered away alone.
His solo win was all the more impressive because of the atrocious conditions, with torrential rain and biting cold winds lashing the riders as they battled round a circuit which they covered four times – the final lap having been dropped because of flooding.
“Because we are the only continental team in the race we had to show class,” explained Bialoblocki. “There were no real tactics on the road we just had to be near the front and chase any moves and counter attack.”
“I have wanted to win this race for the last six years, I have been second, fourth, sixth, I am very pleased, I am in good form.”
Meanwhile, in cyclo-cross Rab Wardell won the delayed Scottish Championships staged at Strathclyde Country Park on Sunday.
Postponed on December 9, the event saw 27-year-old Alpine Bikes rider lap virtually the whole field to take victory. And in the women’s race, Eileen Roe (Team Ibis Cycles) was crowned champion.
In time trialling, Joel Lewis (Arbis-Colbert) won the Ely and District Hardride3rs 25-mile event in Cambridgeshire.
He clocked 59-01 on a tough day on the Little Downham course. Although his time was at least two minutes off the course record it was still impressive enough to take the win by 47 seconds from Ian Turner (St Neots CC).
Scratch man Sam Barker failed to finish after puncturing.
In road racing, Josh Lawless (Aprire Bicycles) won the seventh round of the South East League’s Winter Series in Gravesend, beating Redhill CC’s Ryan Visser to the victory in the E12 race.
Lawless, 22, will now head to France to race for the season.
Elsewhere, Hargroves Cycles’ 17-year-old Harry Franklin won the fifth race in the East London Velo Six Days of Winter Series, beating fellow teen Henry Latimer (AW Cycles) to the line.
And the Royal Air Force CC rider Robert Willcocks took victory in the final round of the Imperial Winter Series at Hillingdon on Saturday, while Tony Gibb (The Pack Racing) won the overall series.
The Army CU Series at Ludgershall was abandoned after just two fourth cat races with snow falling on the circuit.
Perfs Pedal Race, photo by Phil O’Connor/www.sportivephoto.com