Tom Pidcock (VCUK PH MAS) raced to victory in the fifth and final stage of the SD Sealants Junior Tour of Wales, the final round of the British Cycling Junior Road Series.
Second place was enough for Fred Wright (VC Londres) to win the overall Junior Tour of Wales, while Charlie Meredith (Giant CC-Halo Films) placed fifth overall to secure victory in this year’s British Cycling Junior Road Series.
Day three gallery
The fifth stage on day three began with a new-look leader board, with Pidcock and team-mate Rob Scott having been handed time penalties for a race infringement.
Nevertheless, they all raced hard as they headed round the 86 kilometres from Brynmawr to the Tumble.
A brisk start saw an early break go as the race de-neutralised just before Merthyr Tydfil, Matthew Cox (Giant CC), Matt Draper (Velocity Globalbike), Theo Hartley (DFL In-Gear) and Charlie Quarterman (Zappi’s RT) forging ahead, and as the race approached the first King of the Mountains at Aberdare Hill the quartet were joined by Joe Nally (Eastern & Central Scotland), Ryan Coulter (Pro Vision) and Joe Hill (ASL360). Joe Nally taking the points ahead of Quarterman in the KOM jersey.
But coming off Penderyn Moor and through Storey Arms the lead group had changed. A strong group of some 10 riders including Quarterman, Coulton, Billy Robinson (Squadra RT), Matt Walls (Velocity Globalbike) and Fred Wright worked well to get a big gap to the main field. Matt Walls took the second sprint prime at Libanus just passed the mid-way point in the race.
“That was a hard climb, it goes on forever. But I’ll be here again next year as I’ll still be a junior! - race winner Fred Wright.
The leaders upped the pace as they race approached Crickhowell and the chase, including eventual stage winner Pidcock, was some 90 seconds off the back of the front group with the peloton almost three minutes adrift.
Coming into the climb at the foot of the tumble Pidcock jumped off the front of the chasers and straight through the leaders to take the climb alone, no one able to respond to his turn of speed on the steep ascent.
“The time penalties handed out changed the dynamic of the race, because Tom who had the penalty just attacked hard to get the stage win,” said Fred Wright. “I was in the break for the last part of the race, and on the Tumble for the last time he just zipped past.
I got on his wheel and most of the people in the break got dropped. Tom just rode off. I kept him in my sights, but nobody could respond to that.
“We had been given time gaps before the Tumble so I knew I had a chance of the yellow jersey but I couldn’t quite believe it. I just gave it everything up the Tumble, and I knew we had a gap but I wasn’t sure what it was.
“That was a hard climb, it goes on forever. But I’ll be here again next year as I’ll still be a junior!
“I had a pretty bad time trial and was 31st and a minute and a half down, but I gradually got into the race and got time back bit by bit, but going into the race I thought I would be helping Ethan stay in yellow, but I had my opportunity.”
1. Fred Wright (VC Londres) 7:26.43
2. Ethan Hayter (VC Londres) at 33sec
3. Jake Stewart (Swinnerton Cycles) at 1.00
4. Peter Kibble (Wales) at 1.02
5. Charlie Meredith (Giant CC-Halo Films) at 1.06
1. Thomas Pidcock (VCUK PH MAS) 2:19.45
2. Fred Wright (VC Londres) at 39sec
3. Mark Donovan (Beste Alda La Tostadora) at 34sec
4. Charlie Quarterman (Zappi’s RT) at 48sec
5. Daniel Coombe (Planet X) at 1.25