There's more to come this Sunday October 23rd at Alexandra Palace in London but meanwhile the first two rounds of the Rapha Supercross were run off on Saturday and Sunday at Lake Windermere and Huddersfield. It's a team competition and Hope are clinching it so far but top individual performances from Hargroves and Wiggle riders signify that they won't have it easy on Sunday.
Road.cc blogger Liam Glen has already written about his Windermere experience here but on Saturday among the really speedy riders in sunny Lake District splendour team captain and National Champion Paul Oldham led his Hope Technology team to the win over seven others in the opening round of the Rapha Super Cross.
Oldham powered away in the opening lap to take the prime, only to judder to a halt with a lengthy mechanical soon after but the backing of team-mates Dave Collins and Dan Booth proved sufficient to hold off the challenge of the Scott trio of Nick Craig, Kenta Gallagher and Luke Grivell-Mellor who finished close behind.
Former National Champion Jody Crawforth (Hargroves) and Lee Williams (Wiggle) slugged it out for the top position before Williams pulled away in the closing stages for a surprise and appreciated individual win from the sizeable crowd.
Fourth placed Rob Watson, riding for Rapha / GB Development, took the under-23 prize and wears the competition leader’s jersey going into the second round at Huddersfield on Sunday (16th).
Pressure much? Rapha Super Cross mass start at Huddersfield photos: Wig Worland
Saturday Results - Team
1. Hope Technology
2. Scott UK
3. Rapha/GB Development
7. Sigma Sport/Specialized
Saturday Results - Individual
1. Lee Williams (Wiggle)
2. Jody Crawforth (Hargroves-Specialized-Trant-Next)
3. Paul Oldham (Hope Technology)
4. Rob Watson (Rapha/GB)
5. Dave Collins (Hope Technology)
6. Dan Booth (Hope Technology)
7. Kenta Gallagher (Scott)
8. Luke Grivell-Mellor (Scott)
9. Nick Craig (Scott)
10. Joe Moses (Rapha/GB)
Saturday Results - U23 - Rob Watson (Rapha/GB)
Close thing: On Sunday Jody Crawforth outsprints Oldham but Hope retain team lead
Sunday: Great Scott but it’s Hope Again
It was a very close run race in the second round of the Rapha Super Cross at Huddersfield but Hope Technology, led by National Champion Paul Oldham, again pipped Scott UK to maximum points to keep the leader’s jerseys.
The individual results saw a fantastic duel between the two pre-race favourites, with Hargroves Cycles Jody Crawforth outsprinting Oldham on the line in front of a big crowd on another unseasonably warm, sunny day in the North of England.
Crawforth’s team-mate Steve James won the under-23 prize with third spot, giving Hargroves a good start in the team competition, but with a third-counting rider failing to appear high in the results, it was the consistency of Hope that won out.
Nick Craig, meanwhile, again played his team captain’s role, sticking with Scott UK’s Luke Grivell-Mellor to put the youngster into lead in the under-23 competition.
Nearly 350 riders, from four-year-olds to professionals, took part in the day of racing, with guest of honour and Tour de France pioneer Brian Robinson presenting prizes.
Sunday Results - Team
1. Hope Technology
2. Scott UK
6. Sigma Sport-Specialized
Sunday Results - Individual
1. Jody Crawforth (Hargroves-Specialized-Trant-Next)
2. Paul Oldham (Hope Technology)
3. Steve James (Hargroves-Specialized-Trant-Next)
4. Lee Williams (Wiggle)
5. Stephen Adams (Sigma Sport-Specialized)
6. Luke Grivell-Mellor (Scott UK)
7. Nick Craig (Scott UK)
8. Paul Collins (Hope Technology)
9. Seb Batchelor (Wiggle)
10. Kenta Gallagher (Scott UK)
Sunday Results - U23 - Steve James (Hargroves)
Team Overall after two rounds
1. Hope Technology 20pts
2. Scott UK 18pts
3. Rapha/GB 14pts
4. Wiggle 14pts
5. Hargroves 14pts
6. Sigma Sport 10pts
7. Charge 8pts
Under 23 leader – Luke Grivell Mellor (Scott UK)
Tour de France legend Brian Robinson (right) presents Sunday individual winners Jody Crawforth (centre), National Champion Paul Oldham (left) and Steve James.