Endura Racing made a clean sweep of the first three places in the penultimate round of the Halfords Tour Series in Chester last night, with New Zealander Jack Bauer, who got clear of the field with around ten minutes of the race left, followed home by team-mates Ian Wilkinson and Rob Hayles, the first time since the Tour Series began last year that a single team has managed to fill the top three positions.
The team win puts Endura Racing within two points of series leader Motorpoint-Marshalls Pasta, setting up a tantalising finale in Woking on Thursday, but there was drama unfolding behind the winner on a last lap in the streets of the city’s historic centre as a huge crash took out several members of the Rapha-Condor-Sharp team, all but ending their hopes of winning the overall title.
The evening had begun well for the London-based team, with Kristian House taking the points in the first sprint, and with Graham Briggs and House occupying the first two places it will almost certainly be a Rapha-Condor-Sharp rider who will win the inaugural Boardman Bikes Sprint Competition by the time Thursday’s race finishes.
Kuota-road.cc, the designated home team for the night, were able to take advantage of the chaos to finish the fourth-placed team on the evening, their best result of what has been a frustrating series hampered by injuries and crashes.
Last night’s action will be shown on ITV4 tonight at 7pm.
Halfords Tour Series Round Nine Results
1) Endura Racing
2) Motorpoint ˆ Marshalls Pasta
3) Team Raleigh
4) Kuota ˆ road.cc
5) Rapha ˆ Condor - Sharp
6) Pendragon Le Col Colnago
7) Team Corley Cycles
8) Sigma Sport - Specialized
9) CyclePremier.com - Metaltek
10) Team Ireland
1) Jack Bauer - Endura Racing
2) Ian Wilkinson - Endura Racing
3) Rob Hayles - Endura Racing
4) Yanto Barker - Pendragon Le Col Colnago
5) Kristian House - Rapha-Condor-Sharp
The Halfords Tour Series Standings (after nine rounds)
1) Motorpoint-Marshalls Pasta 79pts
2) Endura Racing 77pts
3) Rapha-Condor-Sharp 73pts
4) Sigma Sport-Specialized 53pts
5) Pendragon Le Col Colnago 52pts
6) Team Raleigh 49pts
7) CyclePremier.com-Metaltek 43pts
8) Team Corley Cycles 33pts
9) Kuota-road.cc 25pts
10) Team Ireland 8pts
Boardman Bikes Sprints Competition Results
1) Kristian House - Rapha-Condor-Sharp 11pts
2) Rob Hayles - Endura Racing 9pts
3) Darren Lapthorne - Rapha-Condor-Sharp 6pts
Boardman Bikes Sprints Competition Standings (after nine rounds)
1) Graham Briggs Rapha-Condor-Sharp 55pts
2) Kristian House Rapha-Condor-Sharp 43pts
3) Liam Holohan Team Raleigh 41pts
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.