Eilidh Shaw sprints to victory as Rob Scott dominates the circuit in Guildford

Eilidh Shaw sprints to victory as Rob Scott dominates the circuit in Guildford

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Eilidh Shaw sprinted to breakaway victory and Rob Scott took another solo win as the third round of the Lloyds Bank National Circuit Series was hosted at Guildford.


Scottish circuit race Champion Eilidh Shaw (Alba Development Road Team) sprinted to victory in the Parcours Guildford Women's Grand Prix ahead of defending champion Alex Morrice (CANYON // SRAM Racing Team), as they broke away from an elite front group with junior Lucy Benezet Minns (Tofuati Active Everybody) late into the race.

The tough cobbled climb up the historic Surrey high street caused riders issues from the first lap, with splits opening up as Morrice and Shaw looked to assert their dominance over the 70 rider bunch early on. Home-town rider, Emily Proud (Le Col RT), took her favoured spot towards the front of the bunch as the race got going, jostling for position with Morrice and Lucy Glover (Shibden-Apex RT).

With the peloton remaining as one, an injection of pace from Bolivian rider, Floren Scrafton (FTP-Fulfil The Potential-Racing), saw a leading group of around 15 riders make a decisive split, consisting of all of the major players in the series standings.

Glover and Proud took turns pulling at the head of the bunch and the group began to thin out. Danni Watkinson (Jadan Vive le Velo Glasdon), who was second in the opening round in Otley, found herself distanced up the cobbled climb, hanging around 40 metres off the back for a long period of time as she fought to regain contact.

At the halfway mark, disaster struck for Scrafton as she clipped the kerb going through a fast downhill right hand turn. Alice Colling (Shibden-Apex) was left with nowhere to go as both riders ended up on the floor. The disruption caused a split in the leading group and a select group of 10 riders emerged at the head of affairs, including Morrice, Shaw, and the fast finishing Isabel Darvill (Doltcini-O'Shea).

Women's podium

An infernal pace through the line with seven laps remaining set up Morrice for a dig on the cobbles a lap later, dragging the attentive Shaw with her. The duo pulled clear as the rest of the leading group were left looking at one another.

Beth Morrow (Alba Development Road Team) and Lucy Benezet-Minns (Tofuati Everyone Active) sensed the danger and made their move shortly after. Darvill led a diminished chasing group of just four riders behind, the quartet beginning to show signs of fatigue on the technical circuit.

With Morrow fading, Benezet-Minns accelerated in a bid to bridge to the leading two, her shoulders rocking as she edged ever closer. With Morrow hanging in no man's land, the quartet behind had given up the chase, rolling past the finishing line spread across the road.

With less than four laps remainin,g Benezet-Minns made the junction, the Tofuati-Active Everyone rider sitting in the wheels as she recovered from the effort. Behind, the chasing group had swelled to six riders with Morrow just ahead.

Morrice chose to set the pace for the majority of the final lap, pouncing out of the penultimate corner with a surprise attack and reaching the final run in up the cobbles with a small advantage over Shaw. However, the Scot was able to overhaul her rival as the line approached, punching the air as she crossed the line while Benezet-Minns followed Morrice in for third.

Morrow hung on for fourth, while a fifth place for Darvill elevates her to the series lead. The circuit race specialist is now two points clear of unattached rider Corrine Side, who came home in sixth.

Despite some of their riders racing abroad, the DAS-Hutchinson-Brother UK team retains their commanding lead in the team classification, while Alba Development Road Team are now second following Shaw's win.

Women's results

Rob Scott


Rob Scott (TEKKERZ CC) picked up where he left off in Ilkley last Friday, defying the odds with a stunning solo win in the Cycle Exchange Open Grand Prix after attacking with almost 40 minutes to go.

The race got underway at a brutal pace, with Scott leading the peloton through the line at the end of the first lap. Gaps had already begun to appear with the technical course proving tough to manage for riders at the back of the bunch.

The first riders to attack were Toby Barnes (Spectra Racing) and Will Truelove (Thriva-SRCT). The chase was led by Tom Couzens and his Ribble Rebellion squad were keen to get back to winning ways after taking the opening round victory, courtesy of Matt Bostock.

With Barnes and Truelove brought back to the bunch, the infernal tempo from the first lap shattered the race into pieces soon after. A leading group of around 10 emerged with the peloton consisting of around 20 riders behind. The remainder of the field found themselves reduced to ones and twos as they frantically tried to regain contact with the race still in its infancy.

With three Tekkerz CC riders making the front group, Scott sensed their advantage and made his decisive move with almost 40 minutes left on the clock. As he attacked up the cobbled climb to the finish line, teammate Alec Briggs slowed the pace behind and Scott's advantage quickly grew to 10 seconds.

Toby Barnes

Max Rusby (Ribble Rebellion) was joined by Barnes and Truelove, who had decided attack was the best form of defence, as they launched a spirited pursuit of lone leader Scot, but they were quickly brought back to the peloton.

Couzens was the next man to attempt to bridge to Scott, along with the aggressive Truelove. However, the Thriva-SRCT rider was unable to hold the pace set by Couzens and he was swallowed up by the chasing group. Barnes sensed the race slipping away and attacked alone, quickly bridging to Couzens and joining the chase. Not long after, a crash slowed Couzens, leaving Barnes alone in second place on the road.

With Scott now a seemingly unbridgeable 50 seconds ahead of the peloton, and Barnes’ advantage growing, the peloton appeared to be almost out of firepower - Wheelbase-CabTech-Castelli could only commit Callum Laborde to the chase, aided by the excellent Couzens who seemed to have recovered from his crash.

Coming into the final laps the pace in the bunch remained high as a tiring Barnes risked being reeled in. Harry Macfarlane (TAAP-Kalas) attempted to outfox his rivals as the bell tolled, making it to the finishing straight before being overhauled by Briggs and Truelove as they sprinted shoulder to shoulder to the line. Brigg's all-out sprint claimed him the final podium spot, edging past his rival with only a handful of metres to spare.

Open podium

However, the night belonged to Scott, who had sat up to take in the noise of the crowd with the line in sight, arms aloft in victory. Barnes held off the chasing group to take second, backing up his fourth place in Ilkley.

Scott strengthened his grip on the series lead ahead of Matt Bostock, the former national champion enduring a tough night to finish 17th. Briggs moves up to third, his podium helping TEKKERZ CC close to gap to Ribble Rebellion in the team classification.

Open results

The fourth round of the Lloyds Bank National Circuit Series takes place in Dudley on Friday 12 July.