Variety is the spice of life for the British Cycling Women's National Road Series, which moves from the flat, fast and frenetic Hillingdon GP to the CDNW Surf and Turf 2 Day stage race for round four this weekend.
Above: Emily Kay took top honours at last weekend's Hillingdon GP but who will prevail at round four?
The event format couldn’t be more different from that of the previous weekend, with day one taking place at Blackpool’s purpose built Palatine circuit, commencing with a one-kilometre time trial event just after noon, before a 45 minute circuit race around the seaside town in the late afternoon wraps up the day.
The event moves inland for the ‘turf’ stage, a 53 mile road race stage starting and finishing at Out Rawcliffe on the flat plains between Blackpool, Fleetwood and Garstang.
With such three separate stages to contest, picking an overall winner is a tough call. British Cycling Olympic Academy rider Emily Kay (Scott Contessa Epic), triumphant at last weekend’s Hillingdon Grand Prix, is thus far missing from the start list, as is series leader Charline Joiner (MG Maxifuel Pro Cycling). However making her return is Anne Ewing (Breast Cancer Care RT), who jointly held the series lead with Karla Boddy (MG Maxifuel Pro Cycling) ahead of the Hillingdon round.
Breast Cancer Care’s team performance has been impressive thus far in the series and Ewing has already show that she’s capable of consistently placing in stage races, with victory in the round one City of Perth race already under her belt. Ewing is joined by six teammates so will certainly be one to watch when the action kicks off in Blackpool at 12:30pm on Saturday.
British Cycling Olympic Academy Programme rider Amy Roberts, riding for Wiggle Honda, is also on the start list, in her last competitive outing before joining teammates Laura Trott, Dani King, Joanna Rowsell and Elinor Barker in Glasgow for the National Road Championships in a week’s time.