Two stages for Wales in September’s Tour of Britain

Two stages for Wales in September’s Tour of Britain

New Snowdonia stage finish in North Wales, plus return to Powys and Caerphilly

This September’s Tour of Britain will pay its longest ever visit to Wales, with Llanberis, Machynllethand Caerphilly all hosting the UK’s biggest professional cycle race.

Llanberis, under the watchful gaze of Snowdon, will host the finish of Stage Four on Wednesday 18th September, while the world’s top riders will depart from Machynlleth on a 177-kilometre Stage Five to Caerphilly a day later, which will once again include the notorious ascent of Caerphilly Mountain.

First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones said:

“I was privileged to be able to make the winner’s presentation for the gruelling Stage Six of The Tour of Britain last year, when riders completed the Welsh leg of the event against the stunning backdrop of Caerphilly Castle.

“Anyone who witnessed the reaction of the huge Welsh crowds as the competitors tackled the various challenges of the Welsh landscape, finishing with the two thrilling climbs of Caerphilly Mountain, will realise just how warmly the Welsh public embraced this event and will have had their appetites whetted for an even more exciting 2013. For our part, we will look forward to encouraging even greater numbers of spectators in Wales to follow The Tour, as the dramatic scenery of North Wales is added to the mix. “

The Tour will race into North Wales for the first time as it celebrates the tenth anniversary of the modern race since its revival by SweetSpot Group in 2004. Stage Four, beginning in Stoke-on-Trent will head through Wrexham, Flintshire, Denbighshire, Conwy and Gwynned, before the finish in Llanberis at the heart of the Snowdonia National Park.

Stage Five a day later will start in Machnylleth, Powys and head south through the green heart of Wales to the iconic finish alongside Caerphilly Castle. With a route taking in the Brecon Beacons National Park, plus two ascents of Caerphilly Mountain it will be another leg of The Tour of Britain for the climbers.

“We are delighted to be continuing our relationship with the Welsh Government and bringing two stage finishes to Wales this year,” said Race Director Mick Bennett.

“Stage Four provides the opportunity to take The Tour to new areas in North Wales, with a route and finish in the Snowdonia National Park that will be very popular. A day later spectators can look forward to the return of Caerphilly Mountain, on what will be another very challenging stage.”

The 2013 Tour of Britain, the tenth edition of Britain’s national Tour since it’s revival by SweetSpot Group, will start in Peebles in the Scottish Borders on Sunday 15th September, finishing eight days later in central London on Sunday 22nd September. For full details of the route, please visit

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Betty Pharoah Memorial Legstretchers RR

Our first road races of the season took place in Wales with two events comprising the Betty Pharaoh Memorial Road Races.

below is a report of the actions

Event: 17 March 2013
Location: Cowbridge, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales
Report: Ian Homer
Images: Ian Homer – and Huw Fairclough

A month earlier than the 2012 edition and on a redesigned course, the Betty Pharoah Memorial Legstretchers Road Race, organised by Cardiff Ajax CC, proved every bit to be a Spring Classic.

In the Elite 1,2 category the 111km four lap affair was dominated by a full Team UK Youth contingent which sent Jon Mould and Ian Wilkinson up the road from the dropping of the flag just out of the new start town of Cowbridge. They were quickly joined by other team members establishing a gap on the peloton of a minute by the conclusion of lap one.

However not everything went the way of the boys in blue and white as Mould suffered a double puncture in Death Valley just before the prime in St Brides Major, putting paid to his aspirations of a home-country win. This forced a regroup as Wilkinson was left on his own. Normal service was soon resumed as UK Youth attacked with Yanto Barker, Josh Hunt and Rob Partridge in a move that stuck for the remaining laps despite some hard driving by the peloton including Cardiff Ajax home rider Dave Medhurst.

UK Youth managed to get over three minutes on the bunch by the end of lap three as their leading group swelled. Juniors Tristan Robbins of Cardiff Jif and Rob Westwood of Cwmcarn Paragon did manage to join a couple of the UK Youth riders in a move off the front of the peloton but didn’t stay it out.

With no sharp hill near the finish, the entrance to Llandow Racing Circuit was set up for a bunch gallop – albeit one involving only team members who closed four minutes up after having something of a TTT. Yanto Barker celebrated a little prematurely, veering over with hands off his bars towards his left, had to readjust and almost got pipped on the line by the fast finishing Niklas Gustavsson.

Last year’s winner Colin Parry, now riding for SpinRotor-PrimalEurope-C-Originals RT, had to settle for 8th place – the first non UK Youth rider to come home in a smaller breakaway group.

Yanto Barker praised his team’s professionalism on regaining the trophy Freddy Johansson won in 2011 and remarked; “I’m very pleased …it was so nice to be out in front with team mates as no-one missed a turn.” Of course they do have a major advantage over club teams with regard to training and nutrition and it really showed with a flat finish.

In the Regional category 3/4 race no such team dominance occurred for the three laps. Any attacks were either for the Prime points at St Brides Major or were short-lived and easily countered. So for the most part it was ‘Gruppo Compatto’ on the Vale of Glamorgan undulating course.

Cardiff Ajax’ Alex Tuck did try for a long one in the final km but was overwhelmed by the rouleurs and sprinters as they turned left into the finish. The ensuing gallop produced a fine win by a few bike lengths by third cat Hywel Silvester of Bike Doctor with the juniors Jordan Bason MG-Maxifuel Pro Cycling in second and Jack Reed Royal Dean Forest CC in third.


E/1/2/3 race
1. Yanto Barker Team UK Youth E Sen
2. Niklas Gustavsson Team UK Youth E Sen
3. Ian Wilkinson Team UK Youth E Sen
4. Rob Partridge Team UK Youth E Sen
5. Josh Hunt Team UK Youth E Sen
6. Chris Opie Team UK Youth E Sen
7. Marcin Bialoblocki Team UK Youth E Sen
8. Colin Parry SpinRotor-Primal Europe-C-Originals RT 1st Sen
9. Rob Westwood Cwmcarn Paragon RC Jun
10. Tristan Robbins Cardiff JIF 2nd Jun
11. Gerry Bowditch NFTO 2nd Vet40
12. Craig Seaman County Cycles Racing Team 2nd Sen
13. Joseph Wiltshire Cwmcarn Paragon Cycle Club 2nd Jun
14. Andrew Feather Exeter Wheelers 2nd Sen
15. John Holt County Cycles Racing Team 1st Vet40
16. Michael Serafin Guernsey Velo Club 3rd Sen
17. Matthew Osborn GVC Edmond De Rothschild 2nd Sen
18. David Medhurst Cardiff Ajax CC 2nd Sen
19. Malcolm Dixon Severn RC 2nd Sen
20. Graeme Boswell Cardiff Ajax CC 2nd Sen

Category 3/4 race
1. Hywel Silvester Bike Doctor 3rd Sen
2. Jordan Bason MG-Maxifuel Pro Cycling 3rd Jun
3. Jack Reed Royal Dean Forest CC 3rd Jun
4. Ryan Bevis NFTO 3rd Sen
5. David Gorton Team Tor 2000 3rd Sen
6. Christopher Fairclough Cwmcarn Paragon Cycle Club 3rd Sen
7. Mick Ballantyne NFTO 3rd Vet40
8. Hannah Walker Matrix Fitness Racing Academy 1st SenW
9. Michael Tarling West Wales Cycle Racing Team 3rd Sen
10. Joseph Lally CC Abergavenny 3rd Sen
11. Charles Solomon Bynea CC 3rd Jun
12. Gary Sturch Pontypool RCC 3rd Vet40
13. Adrian Peall Forza Cycles Racing Team 3rd Sen
14. Zach Minto Cardiff Ajax CC 4th Sen
15. Geoff Ripley Bristol RC 3rd Sen
16. Mark Davies Cycle Coaching Wales RT 3rd Sen
17. Ross Porter Team AC/DC 3rd Vet40
18. Sam Shannon Rutrainingtoday CC 3rd Sen
19. Alex Tuck Cardiff Ajax CC 4th Sen
20. Calum Challenger Onit Sports 4th Sen

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Top Class Cycling Returns To Wales

Bill Owen is once again promoting top class cycling in Wales with the announcement of the Premier calender Grand Prix of Wales to take place as part of the Abergavenny Festival of Cycling over the weekend of the 13th – 15th July 2013. We will be there as part of the marshalling team.

More details here:

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Tour of Britain 2013

The organisers of the Tour of Britain have announced the dates for next years tour.

The 2013 Tour of Britain will run from Sunday 15th to Sunday 22nd September, with details of the route for next year’s Tour being announced at our National Launch in the Spring.

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Last event of the year

This weekend sees our last cycle event of the year with the Autumn Epic Sportive in Mid Wales starting in Knighton in the Welsh Marches, and taking you through the superb scenery of the ancient county of Radnorshire.

Radnorshire is near perfect cycling territory, with its unspoilt countryside and peaceful roads – you are in for a real treat if this is your first visit. You will be taken you through some truly outstanding scenery, including hills, lakes, valleys and moorland. The ride climbs from the first mile, and highlights include the Elan Valley mountain road, Glascwm and Abbey Cwm Hir climbs.

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Etape Cymru

This weekend is the Etape Cymru sportive in North Wales. We’ll have a team of bikeson the route to look after the participants.

Here’s hoping the weather is dry and everybody enjoys the mountains and valleys .

More info here

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