Robert Scott (VCUK PH-MAS) tasted victory on day one of the Sleepwell Hotels Isle of Man Junior Tour, round four of the British Cycling Junior Road Series, near Douglas on Friday.
The event began with the traditional short prologue time trial on the Promenade at Douglas. The day had been sunny but cold, and by the time the juniors set off the sun was low in the sky and the sea breeze had picked up considerably as the temperature plummeted.
First away was Harry Paine of VCUK PH-MAS Cycling Team and his time of 1:46 set a solid benchmark for the others to aim at. Fast though Paine’s time was, it was beaten a minute later when Anthony Anderson went top with a 1:44.
The next 20 competitors couldn’t get close to Anderson – or Paine – and we were a third of the way through the order when first Charlie Quartermain of Zappi’s Racing Team split the leaders with a 1:45, and then Velocity-Speedflex team mates Matthew Walls and Matthew Draper equalled Anderson’s time to go second and third.
The next rider up went one better – Robert Scott of VCUK PH-MAS clocking an impressive 1:41 to take the lead, with his team mate Thomas Pidcock following him home, two seconds behind but a second ahead of Anderson who dropped to third.
Stage one gallery
Less than four minutes later he was fourth as Fred Wright of VC Londres matched Pidcock’s time and slotted in to third place. Remarkably – with 40 of the 78 riders still to go at that point – the order of the top seven would not change again and there would only be one more change to the top 10.
That change came with the very last rider, Owen Dudley of the Isle of Man who clocked 1:45 to slot in to eighth place, dropping Paine down to tenth.
Such a short time trial rarely has a bearing on the overall result. The top 48 riders are separated by less than 10 seconds and Saturday’s stage in Peel - which consists of 11 laps of a brutal triangular course with a short sharp climb to the finish - is likely to see some real gaps start to emerge.
Scott, though, will be in yellow and he spoke to British Cycling after the Prologue.
“I'm happy with the result. I went into it thinking I'd have a good shot at it but there were also some fast names out there. I just gave my all and hoped for the best!
“It feels good to go into tomorrow’s stage in the lead - with my teammate Tom Pidcock in second place. Let's see how it goes tomorrow. It's a hard course so should make for a good race. I'd love to win.
“Either myself or one of the team taking the win would be great! It will be tough but with the team we have I believe we've got the ability to get a good result here.”
Result of Stage 1
1 Robert Scott VCUK PH-MAS Cycling Team 1:41
2 Thomas Pidcock VCUK PH-MAS Cycling Team at 2sec
3 Fred Wright VC Londres same time
4 Anthony Anderson Team Corley Cycles at 3sec
5 Matthew Walls Velocity-Speedflex st
6 Matthew Draper Velocity-Speedflex st
7 Charlie Quarterman Zappis Racing Team at 4sec
8 Owen Dudley Isle of Man st
9 Adam Hartley VCUK PH-MAS Cycling Team at 5sec
10 Harry Paine VCUK PH-MAS Cycling Team st