The 2015 British Cycling Elite Road Series is set to descend on Stockton-on-Tees on Sunday 12 July where Raleigh GAC’s Steve Lampier will hope to extend his handsome overall lead.
The event is the fifth round of the 2015 series and the second of the summer’s Grand Prix sub-series, which travels to Ryedale, Abergavenny and Leicester, after which the 2015 Elite Road Series champion will be crowned.
Raleigh GAC’s Steve Lampier has made consistency his mantra so far in the Elite Road Series this season, building a comfortable lead without winning a single round.
A brace of second places in Chorley and Northumberland was followed by a blip in Wiltshire, when the Raleigh GAC man finished 16th but still in the points, enough to win the Spring Cup.
A return to form in Staffordshire last weekend, the first of the Grand Prix Series, saw the 31-year-old from Truro take fourth, boosting his points tally to 112, 33 ahead of Team Wiggins’ Andy Tennant.
Gabriel Cullaigh of 100%ME leads the Grand Prix Series standings after his Stafford Kermesse win but the talented 19-year-old from Yorkshire will be absent in Stockton.
Andy Tennant too misses the event, Team Wiggins’ six entries dominated by under-23 riders. But just a point behind Tennant in the overall standings is 2014 Elite Road Series champion Yanto Barker, one of eight riders in a formidable ONE Pro Cycling squad.
ONE Pro Cycling currently lead the team standings with 40 points, one ahead of Raleigh GAC and four points ahead of Madison Genesis. ONE Pro’s line-up for Stockton includes George Atkins, Tour of the Reservoir stage winner Marcin Bialoblocki and Jon Mould, the latter carrying great British championships form into the Elite Circuit Series, with a win at last weekend’s round in Stafford.
NFTO is another powerhouse squad for Stockton, with a line-up containing Chorley Grand Prix winner Ian Bibby, Irish prodigy Eddie Dunbar and reigning Australian national criterium champ Steele Von Hoff.
Madison Genesis bring the talents of Tour of the Reservoir winner Erick Rowsell and the combative Mark McNally, two of eight riders masterminded by multiple British road and cyclo-cross champion turned directeur sportif, Roger Hammond.
The race’s mix of open road and criterium elements may suit JLT Condor’s Graham Briggs, the 2012 Elite Circuit Series champion an experienced hand on the tiller of a squad fielding under-23s Luke Grivell-Mellor, Joe Moses and local man Harry Tanfield.
The Stockton Grand Prix is a race with two distinct phases run over a total of 176 kilometres (110 miles). After a town centre start, riders will face ten laps of an open road circuit north west of Stockton, passing through Thorpe Thewles, Redmarshall, Whitton and Thorpe Leazes.
Racing reaches its climax on six laps of the shorter, urban ‘riverside’ circuit which straddles the River Tees, with the finish back on Riverside itself.
How to follow the racing
- Live reporting from 12.30pm on Sunday with race updates, images and social media.
- A report, results, reaction and images will appear on the British Cycling website.