Road Race & Time Trial National Championships Round-Up | The Cycling Race News Show

Published on July 2nd 2018

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Welcome back to the GCN Racing News Show - this week, we wrap up the rest of the national championships as we continue the build-up to the upcoming Tour de France.

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Italy - there, we had a particularly aggressive race, and so it was in some ways a surprise to see Elia Viviani come out on top.  Viviani is on flying form, with 13 wins to his name already this season before Sunday, but we’re used to seeing him win bunch sprints, and this was quite different.  Viviani attacked in the closing kilometres with Bahrain Merida climbers Pozzovivo and Visconti, and despite their best efforts to get rid of him on the climbs, Viviani held tight and easily outsprinted them at the finish. That does mean, though, that the Italian Tricolore will not be on show at this year’s Tour de France, and that has been a bit of a theme this year. 

The Dutch champions jersey will also be absent.  The championships took place in Hoogerheide, and also saw some very aggressive racing, despite the flatter course.  A breakaway group containing Danny Van Poppel and Mathieu Van Der Poel were caught by a vastly reduced bunch on the final lap, setting up what looked to be a repeat victory for Ramon Sinkeldam of Groupama FDJ.  He launched his sprint with a couple of hundred metres to go and veered left, in front of Van Der Poel.  Van Der Poel then sat down briefly and gently nudged Sinkeldam to the right, before launching a devastating acceleration to the line, winning with relative ease. 

Great Britain - In the men’s event, the decisive breakaway would go clear in the early stages - not uncommon at the British national championships - or indeed at plenty of any national championships where there isn’t a strong, dominant team who are able to control the race.  Team Sky was represented, albeit with only one rider, Owain Doull, former winner Adam Blythe was there with teammate Mark Christian, Ben Swift of UAE was also in there with his cousin Connor, and it was the lesser known of the two that would earn the stripes this year.   Connor Swift attacked with 12km’s remaining, showing enormous determination and power to hold the rest at bay.  22-year-old Swift currently rides for British based Madison Genesis but has set the groundwork for a move to WorldTour with that ride - expect to see plenty more of he and Jessica Roberts in the coming years.

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