UK road: Rowsell holds on in Wales

Cronshaw wins in Cockerham

GLASGOW, UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 15:  The peloton make their way through the Scottish Countryside on Stage Six of the Tour of Britain from Dumfries to Glasgow on September 15, 2007 in Glasgow, England.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

British junior road race champion Erick Rowsell, from Surrey, held off stiff competition from Norwegian and Belgium teams, as well as the home countries, to win the Junior Tour of Wales road race which ended on Monday after five stages in three days.


The Team Corridori-Specialized rider won the opening individual time trial, lost his lead on the first road stage, regained the yellow jersey on stage three and then held on for an eight-second winning margin over Johan Fredrik Ziesler, of the Nymark Cycling Team from Norway.

Joe Perrett (Glendene CC-Bike Trax), second to Rowsell in the prologue TT, ended up in third place overall, 49 seconds down on Ziesler but 31 seconds clear of Belgium’s Tosh Vandersande (Avia Cycling Team).

The outstanding feature of Monday’s 94.4-kilometre final stage, which started at Nantyglo and finished at the summit of the notorious Tumble Mountain, was a near race-long breakaway by the Isle of Man’s Mark Christian.

He was caught with 12 kilometres to go but had the strength to hold on for third place as Belgium duo Thomas Optebeeck and Vandersande powered to a 28-second victory, crossing the line hand in hand.

Erick Rowsell ended the day in eighth place, 72 seconds down, but held on to his yellow jersey.

Christian’s reward for his epic ride was overall victory in both the King of the Mountains and points competitions.

Cronshaw wins from 5-man break in Cockerham

 Local rider Matt Cronshaw (Kinesis UK) led in a five-strong breakaway group to win the latest round of the Cycling Development North West road race series over a 78.5-mile course at Cockerham, Lancashire.

The race attracted a near record field of 115 riders, including 60 for the elite, first and second category Race A.

Cronshaw took the flag ahead of North East Region road race champion Collin Humphrey (Activ Cycles), with Yorkshire’s Mark Wordsworth (Corley Cycles) next as the leading group was completed by Cheshire’s former national amateur champion Matt Stephens (Sigma Sport) and Alastair Kay (York Cycleworks).


It was Cronshaw’s first win of the series after taking third and fourth placings in earlier events.


Junior Tour of Wales  
Stage five, Nantyglo, 94.4km
1 Thomas Optebeeck (Avia Cycling Team, Belgium) 2:33:59
2 Tosh Vandersande (Avia Cycling Team, Belgium)  
3 Mark Christian (Isle of Man) 0:00:28
4 George Atkins (Pearl Izumi-Planet X) 0:00:39
5 Joe Perrett (Glendene CC-Bike Trax) 0:00:47
6 Sam Harrison (Wales) 0:00:50
Final overall  
1 Erick Rowsell (Team Corridori-Specialized) 7:45:56
2 Johan Fredrik Ziesler (Nymark Cycling Team, Norway) 0:00:08
3 Joe Perrett (Glendene CC-Bike Trax) 0:00:57
4 Tosh Vandersande (Avia Cycling Team, Belgium) 0:01:28
5 Alexander King (GWR Team-Scott Wilson) 0:01:40
6 Tim Kennaugh (Isle of Man) 0:02:40
King of the Mountains  
1 Mark Christian (Isle of Man)  
1 Mark Christian (Isle of Man)  
Cycling Development North West  
Cockerham, Lancs, 78.5 miles  
1 Matt Cronshaw (Kinesis UK) 2:52:14  
2 Collin Humphrey (Activ Cycles)  
3 Mark Wordsworth (Corley Cycles)  
4 Matt Stephens (Sigma Sport RT)  
5 Alastair Kay (York Cycleworks)  
6 Andrew Tinsley (Onimpex-Bio Racer) 0:00:29  
7 Nathan Turnbull (Leigh Premier RC)  
8 Peter Williams (Pinarello RT) 0:00:34  
9 Ben Greenwood (Rapha Condor-Recycling)  
10 Kristian House (Rapha Condor-Recycling)  
Supporting race, 50 miles  
1 Rob Whitfield (FP Mailing CT) 2:04:43  
2 Andy Coupe (Preston CC)  
3 Richard Maughan (Leigh Premier RC)  
4 Stuart Alderson (Manchester Wheelers) 0:00:21  
5 Mark Thaxter (Huddersfield Star Wh)  
6 Alistair Jowett (Pendle Forest CC)