Malcolm Elliott took the individual honours in round 2 of the Halfords Tour Series in Duham last night on a night when team tactics were tested to the max on a super-tough circuit. Experienced triumphed on a night that called for brains as well as brawn with the wily old campaigner, Elliot, a month short of his 49th birthday showing everyone how it should be done crowning a masterful display of team tactics from his Motorpoint team.
Elliott's first place was enough to give his Motorpoint - Marshalls Pasta team the overall win on the night with Rapha Condor Sharp coming home second and Kuota - road.cc in third place. It was a mixed night for the Kuota - road.cc boys with a much improved performance marred by a crash two laps from the finish that left Macca (David McGowan) with a broken shoulder – everyone here at road.cc wishes him a speedy recovery. Other fallers in a race described by Motorpoint rider, Andy Tennant as "“the toughest criterium I’ve ever ridden.” included first round winner, Tony Gibb and Motorpoint rider Yanto Barker who wrote off his Pinarello Opera. However not everyone hated the Durham course, Kuota - road.cc, Team Manager Cherie Pridham tweeted that "the boys loved that circuit oddly enough"
Afterwards Elliott described the course as "Absolute purgaratory… Every possible obstacle you could have on a crit’ course, it was here. It was so hard it was almost comical." However the old man of the series read the course which contained a long cobbled climb up to the finish area well enough to realise that being in the first five of six riders to the 'dead' turn at the bottom of the climb would prove crucial. And so it proved, when his team mate Tennant attacked on lap three Elliot was in position to go with him and the Motorpoint team were in a strong position. A lead group of six finally established itself containing two Rapha Condor riders – Kristian House and Darren Lapthorne, plus Dave Clarke of Pendragon – Le Col – Colnago and Darren Montgomerie.
The race for the overall win came down to a straight fight between Motorpoint Marshalls Pasta and Rapha Condor Sharp and when the lead group lapped the other three Rapha riders in the race the advantage swung towards the Motorpoint men, Elliot then rammed it home by taking the final sprint from House and Clarke.
In the Boardman Bikes Sprints Competition, second placed finisher Kristian House took a dominant victory on the night for Rapha – Condor – Sharp, winning all three Boardman Bikes Sprints to take the lead in the competition, five points clear of Raleigh’s Liam Holohan.
You can watch the riders tackle the cobbles and climbs of Durham, on ITV4 tonight at 7pm for an hour’s highlights show. The Halfords Tour Series is back in action with Round Three from Portsmouth on Tuesday night, for more information visit www.tourseries.co.uk or follow the action via Twitter at www.twitter.com/TourSeries
1) Motorpoint – Marshalls Pasta
2) Rapha – Condor – Sharp
3) Kuota – road.cc
4) Sigma Sport - Specialized
5) Endura Racing
6) Team Raleigh
7) Pendragon – Le Col - Colnago
8) CyclePremier.com - Metaltek
9) Team Corley Cycles
10) Team Ireland
1) Malcolm Elliott Motorpoint – Marshalls Pasta
2) Kristian House Rapha – Condor – Sharp
3) Dave Clarke Pendragon – Le Col – Colnago
The Halfords Tour Series Standings (after two rounds)
1) Rapha – Condor – Sharp 19pts
2) Motorpoint – Marshalls Pasta 18pts
3) Endura Racing 15pts
4) Team Raleigh 12pts
5) Sigma Sport – Specialized 12pts
6) Kuota – road.cc 11pts
7) Pendragon – Le Col – Colnago 10pts
8) CyclePremier.com – Metaltek 7pts
9) Team Corley Cycles 4pts
10) Team Ireland 2pts
Boardman Bikes Sprints Competition Results
1) Kristian House Rapha – Condor – Sharp 15pts
2) Dave Clarke Pendragon – Le Col – Colnago 9pts
3) Malcolm Elliott Motorpoint – Marshalls Pasta 8pts
Boardman Bikes Sprints Competition Overall Standings
1) Kristian House Rapha – Condor - Sharp 15pts
2) Liam Holohan Team Raleigh 10pts
3) Dave Clarke Pendragon – Le Col – Colnago 9pts
Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning road.cc - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.