Jon Mould stormed to the top of the British Cycling Elite Circuit Series in emphatic fashion on Friday evening, the One Pro Cycling rider taking a solo victory in the Stafford Grand Prix.
The 24-year-old from Newport in Wales attacked after half an hour, and managed to hold off concerted chases for the remaining 30 minutes to take the win alone, with Adam Blythe (Orica GreenEDGE) second and Morgan Mneisky (Raleigh GAC) third.
Having finished third in the opening round of the Series the Otley Grand Prix 48 hours earlier, Mould takes the overall lead.
A fast pace kicked in early in the race, by after just a few laps the riders were strung out with the strong guys at the front and the not-so-strong at the back, struggling to keep on.
After 20 minutes just 35 riders remained, but they were to be split in dramatic fashion shortly after when a crash just after the pits brought six riders down and delayed several more.
Shortly after the race had got back together, One Pro Cycling launched an attack to try to capitalise on the disruption, and Jon Mould edged into a lead by around eight seconds after a few laps of pressure.
His lead was held at around ten seconds, but with SportGrub KUOTA’s Will Bjergfelt on the front and driving the chase, the race still looked there for the taking with ten minutes plus the final five laps remaining.
Mould remained elusive, and next up was Team Wiggins on the front. By this time Mould had a lead of around 25 seconds, and while the Wiggo boys managed to shorten that a little, they could still not get their target in sight.
Mould swallowed up the laps while his pursuers began to tire, and it soon became evident that – barring misfortune for Mould – the rest were fighting for second.
On the line Mould had plenty of time to salute the crowd, while Blythe took the chase for second 17 seconds later from the remains of the bunch.
Mould said afterwards: “It was hard! I snuck down the back straight and it slowly went out and out. I thought it was touch and go for a while but it went out far enough for me to get clear.
“It was a really technical circuit so it was important to be on the front. To be honest when you’re on your own you take the bends faster and have more choice about where you want to go instead of fighting for position.
“The surface is hard, you’re hopping off cobbles a lot and avoiding pot holes. So it did help me to be on my own.
“I’m really happy with my week for me and the team. And the crowd all the way down the home straight all the way from the pits to the finish was really good.”
1 Jonathan Mould One Pro Cycling 00:57:23
2 Adam Blythe Orica Greenedge 00:17
3 Morgan Kneisky Raleigh GAC 00:17
4 Jonny McEvoy NFTO 00:17
5 Andrew Tennant Team Wiggins 00:17
6 Harry Tanfield JLT Condor 00:17
7 Evan Oliphant Raleigh GAC 00:17
8 David McGowan Pedal Heaven RT 00:17
9 George Atkins One Pro Cycling 00:17
10 Dale Appleby NFTO 00:17
11 Graham Briggs JLT Condor 00:17
12 William Bjergfelt SportGrub KUOTA CT 00:17
13 Felix English JLT Condor 00:17
14 Jacob Tipper Neon-Velo Cycling Team 00:17
15 Alex Paton Pedal Heaven RT 00:17
16 Liam Stones Raleigh GAC 01:17
17 Tom Barras NFTO 01:17
18 Calvin Beneke Raleigh GAC 01:24
19 Christopher Lawless Team Wiggins 01:26
20 Reece Lloyd NFTO 01:56
21 Alex Minting Neon-Velo Cycling Team @1 lap
22 Jake Hales Spirit Bikes Racing Team @1 lap
23 Mark Christian Team Wiggins @1 lap
24 Lewis Atkins Pedal Heaven RT @1 lap
25 Luc Hall Team Wiggins @1 lap