Welsh riders came out on top in the first-ever Sunderland round of the Tour Series as Megan Barker (CAMS – Basso) and Will Roberts (Wales Racing Academy) took the individual honours on Wearside.
Barker’s victory, her third Tour Series win, helped CAMS – Basso take the win on the night to set up a nail-biting finale in Castle Douglas on Thursday with just one point separating them and Series leaders Pro-Noctis – Redchilli Bikes – Heidi Kjeldsen.
Meanwhile, Roberts took the men’s win on the night as reigning champions Canyon dhb SunGod bounced back from their disappointing opening event to take their tenth-round victory. Heading to Scotland they trail overall leaders Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling by three points, keeping the dream of a historic hattrick of titles alive, but very much an outside shot.
After a packed day of family activities in Sunderland’s Mowbray Park, Britain’s leading men’s and women’s teams took the stage on the fast 1.3km circuit around the perimeter of the park.
Despite predictions that the long uphill drag of Burdon Road would split the peloton, and the efforts of a motivated CAMS – Basso team to do just that, the field largely hung together with Jo Tindley’s Pro-Noctis – Redchilli Bikes – Heidi Kjeldsen team able to shadow their moves and keep the five yellow Freewheel.co.uk jerseys.
Tindley also held on to the Freewheel.co.uk Sprints competition while there was a first-ever Brother UK Fastest Lap win for Crimson Orientation Marketing RT and Samantha Stuart.
After their victory in Guisborough on Sunday Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling kept the men’s yellow Freewheel.co.uk jerseys, two points ahead of Crimson Orientation Marketing RT with Canyon dhb SunGod and Wales Racing Academy level a further point in arrears.
The Welsh team enjoyed a standout Sunderland round with Gorseinon’s Roberts attacking from a small group to hold on to the win by just over a second from Ollie Rees (TRINITY Racing) while fellow Wales Racing Academy rider Joe Holt took third.
Active throughout had been British Olympian Charlie Tanfield having been drafted into the Canyon dhb SunGod fresh from arriving back from Tokyo to take fourth on the night and help his team to victory.
As well as keeping the overall teams lead, Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling hold onto the Freewheel.co.uk Sprints jersey through Matt Gibson while Chris McGlinchey took the Brother UK Fastest Lap for Team Spectra p/b Wiggle.
Full results from the men’s and women’s races in Sunderland can be found here.
Highlights of the Sunderland races are on ITV4 at 7pm on Wednesday 11 August with a repeat at 12.30pm on Thursday 12 August and available for 30 days via the ITV Hub.
The final round (Round Three) of the 2021 Tour Series takes place on Thursday 12 August in Castle Douglas in Dumfries & Galloway as a part of the CD Bike & Food Festival with 18:00 (women’s) and 19:30 (men’s). Owing to current COVID-19 guidelines in Scotland, the Castle Douglas round will be ticketed (free of charge) and limited to 3,500 spectators. Spectators can register for tickets via the Tour Series website here.