Posted: 06 April 2014
On a changeable morning in Perth, the city centre’s roads were closed in order for over 110 Youth riders to take to a challenging criterium closed road course for the first stage of the ScottishPower Youth Tour of Scotland.
First to the line at 9.15am were the Youth Girls for a 35 minute + four lap race. From the flag, the pace was high, but the riders stayed together in the first few laps. As they approached the first sprint after 10 minutes, an increase in pace at the front of the bunch split the field to pieces, and it was Sarah Bradford who took the line first ahead of Rhona Callander (East Mid Scotland 1) and Madeline Gammon (Team MSW Composite). This group of three stretched out a good lead on the chasing pack, but Sarah could not hold the wheels and dropped back. This left Rhona Callander and Madeline Gammon on their own, ahead of the chasing bunch, with a strong looking Amber King (Composite Girls 1) in between. King was working well on her own, but unfortunately she misjudged the first corner around the 20 minute mark and took a fall. Clearly winded, she slowly got back on her bike, but her momentum was gone, and she fell back into the grasp on the main bunch.
Callander and Gammon were not slowing down, and as the laps went by, they started to lap the field, which by now had splintered into a number of solo and small groups of riders. When the 35 minutes were up, and the lap board was shown for four laps to go, Callander had lapped the entire field, apart from Gammon who she had now dropped. As the bell rang for the final lap, it was clear who was going to take first and second places, but there was a small group who would be fighting it out for the final place on the podium. Rounding the final corner, the sprint began and it was a close three way fight between East Mid Scotland’s Jenny Holl, Kim Baptista (Team MSW Composite) and Sarah Bradford (WoSCA), with Holl just inches across the line ahead of her rivals. However, the glory, and the first Yellow Jersey of the Tour went to Callander, and she leaves the first stage with a 31 second lead over Gammond, with the rest another 65 seconds back.
- Rhona Callander: 40:00
- Madeline Gammond: at 0:31
- Jenny Holl at 1:36
- Kim Baptista st
- Sarah Bradford: st
It was 10.30am when the Youth Boys took to the line for the start of their 45 minute + 4 lap Criterium race, which was on the same course as the girls had just ridden. Straight from the start, the pace was extremely high, but the 74 strong pack was not fazed by the proximity of the barriers at nearly 50kph.
The roads had taken a slight sprinkling from the sky, but this did not have any impact on the bunch, who, unlike the girls race earlier, stayed together in a big pack of over fifty. For the majority of the first twenty five minutes, the group continued to circulate at a rapid pace, but it was only a small number of riders who were dropping off the back, as the large bunch were averaging over 40kph.
The pace would rise on sprint laps, but was not shrinking by any large amount, and as the forty five minutes came to an end, and the final four laps began, there was a group of nearly forty riders who were all still in contention for the win. The pace was still very high, and small splinters began to form in the group, as tiredness and the will to win got the better of some. A group of twenty rounded the final corner all together, and the sprint started with 200m to go. With riders spread across the road and it was Sebastian Dickson (Sports Traider RT) who timed his push to perfection, even having enough time to celebrate as he crossed the line ahead of Adam Hartley (Velocity WD-40) and Adam Stenson (FBD Ireland). Dickson takes a slim one second lead into the next stage this afternoon thanks to bonuses available on the line.
- Sebastian Dickson 49:51
- Adam Hartley st
- Adam Stenson st
- Joseph Nally st
- Thomas Pidcock st
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