NFTO’s Ian Bibby took a second win in the Motorpoint Spring Cup Series with victory in round four, the Cycle Wiltshire Grand Prix.
After taking top spot in the Manx International Grand Prix earlier in the series, Bibby came through a group of four riders at the end of a fast race to win the penultimate round.
118 riders started the 110-mile race and there was action from the off with two small groups attacking early on.
A group of seven riders formed from these attacks and opened up a gap of 31 seconds on the peloton by the time they reached the first King of Mountains.
The lead increased to 1.20 but it wasn’t to last and the bunch was brought back together. However, Brad Morgan of Wheelbase Altura MGD made a solo break and had 15 seconds on his chasers heading into the second King of Mountains.
After Morgan was caught, a seven-man group of Alistair Slater (JLT Condor), Gruffudd Lewis (Madison Genesis), Dale Appleby (NFTO), Rory Townsend (Pedal Heaven), Brad Morgan (Wheelbase Altura MGD), Alex Fanshawe (Zappis) and William Harper (Pedal Heaven Excel Academy) went 46 seconds ahead at the front.
The group was swelled to 13 riders and with three laps to go, they had 55 seconds on the bunch.
Taylor Gunman (Madison Genesis) and Dale Appleby (NFTO) looked to thin the group out a bit and attacked off the front of that group, opening up a 40-second lead.
They were eventually caught but the furious pace continued and there was no let-up as yet another attack went in with Dan Fleeman (Metaltek Kuota), Erick Rowsell (Madison Genesis), Jon Mould (JLT Condor), James Gullen (Pedal Heaven), Dale Appleby (NFTO) and Adria Moreno Sala (Raleigh GAC) working hard to pull 1.45 ahead.
With one lap to go, the leaders were caught and JLT Condor suddenly established themselves at the front of the race and managed to take control.
But there were to be many more twists in the race, first with James Gullen of Pedal Heaven RT pulling away.
But then came the telling move of the race as Will Fox (Pedal Heaven), Ian Bibby (NFTO), Matt Holmes (Madison Genesis) and James Gullen (Pedal Heaven) went 14 seconds clear in the final kilometre.
But it was Bibby who managed to battle his way to the front and take the chequered flag. Will Fox of Pedal Heaven finished second and Matt Holmes of Madison Genesis was third.
Speaking after the race, Bibby said: “Every time we go for the win, it’s nice to get the green jersey but if you look at that you end up messing up. If you win the race, you win the jersey so that’s it really.
“That climb was really hard. Six days ago in Yorkshire, it was zero degrees on the first day, it was 20-odd today, it was like racing in another country.
“It was hard work with the heat and there’s a really hard climb. We tried to cover all the moves and in the end we were just looking after Johnny. But there was a hard climb with five kilometres to go and we found ourselves in a little group of four and we committed.
“It was a bit scrappy towards the end, I nearly hit the barrier.”
The result in Wiltshire leaves Johnny McEvoy (NFTO) still top of the overall Motorpoint Spring Cup Series standings with 87 points, seven ahead of Adria Moreno Sala (Raleigh GAC), while James GUllen (Pedal Heaven) moved up to third, just one point behind Sala.
But with several other riders close behind, the Series title won't be decided until the final round, the Lincoln Grand Prix, next weekend
1 Ian Bibby NFTO 4:02:25
2 Will Fox Pedal Heaven
3 Matt Holmes Madison Genesis
4 James Cullan Pedal Heaven all at same time
5 Graham Briggs JLT Condor +0.05
6 Alex Blain Madison Genesis at same time
7 Albert Torres Raleigh GAC +0.07
8 Jonathan McEvoy NFTO
9 Jack Pullar Pedal Heaven
10 Adria Moreno Sala Raleigh GAC
11 Dale Appleby NFTO
12 Erick Rowsell Madison Genesis
13 Elliott Porter Neon-Velo Cycling Team
14 Steven Lawley Metaltek Kuota Racing Team
15 Joshua Edmondson NFTO
16 Dan Fleeman Metaltek Kuota Racing Team
17 Thomas Stewart Madison Genesis all at same time
18 Jonathan Mould JLT Condor +0.23
19 Matthieu Boulo Raleigh GAC +0.30
20 Jonathan Tiernan-Locke Saint Piran +1.47
21 Chris Lawless JLT Condor
22 Taylor Gunman Madison Genesis
23 James Lowsley-Williams NFTO
24 Luke Ryan Richardsons-Trek RT
25 Connor Swift Envelopemaster Giant Sheffield
26 Russell Downing JLT Condor
27 Alistair Slater JLT Condor
28 Ed Laverack JLT Condor
29 Rory Townsend Pedal Heaven