Report: East Yorkshire Classic Crit

Aussie Richard Lang won his second big money crit in a month when he added the East Yorkshire Classic to his victory in the Leazes Park one at the end of June.

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Rapha versus Raleigh in big money crit in Beverley

Lang was part of a group of four that got away in the final part of the race along with two Raleigh-GAC riders, Bernie Sulzberger and Liam Holohan and GB Academy rider Owain Doull. With two Raleigh up there, and one each from two other strong teams, the peloton did not seem interested at all and only a counter by the sole Endura Racing rider in the race, Russell Downing, saw any sort of chase.

But, according to some of the riders, Raleigh-GAC got greedy and brought the gap down so much so that on the final lap, they went round a corner, and there was the break and by the time the race had been won by Lang, it was one long line of riders as they came together approaching the line.

The race, on wet cobbles, had its share of falls but the biggest surprise was the big crowd that braved the early rain confirming the venue as one of the best in the country for a town centre race.

Post race reactions …

Richard Lang (Rapha Condor Sharp): “Happy days” was Richard’s reaction when he learnt of the prize on offer for the win in Beverley. “It was a pretty tough race but any one of the Rapha Condor Sharp team could have won. We’re all on the front and I was just the lucky one to get in the move.”

“It got really hard and I was hanging on for grim death for a while. Owain Doull was an animal, he had me on the rivet but with two Raleigh there, I was able to miss a few turns and I think that worked in our favour. I could sense the bunch was coming up but Liam was working for Bernie and had a go with a lap to go and I covered that.”

“In the Tour Series, I let Bernie go and I thought I’m not letting this happen again and he led it out and I was able to just get a good jump on him. I had a slow year last year and it’s taken me a while to get going and finding that balance between training and recovery and using racing to take care of itself.”

“I’m definitely looking forward to the Tour of Britain but have to get the climbing legs on but we have a stage race in Spain coming up and that will give me a few miles.”

Bernie Sulzberger (Raleigh GAC): “It was good that me and Langy made the break (both Aussies) but disappointing that I didn’t finish it off like I should have. I think I went too early in the sprint. I panicked as I knew the bunch was coming so I led it out too early and got rolled.”

“Everyone was working especially early on to get it established. This guy here (Owain) was really strong and Langy wasn’t doing much but it was only him there so he didn’t have to. I know Richard from races in Australia we have done and knew he was fast and would be a danger at the finish.”

“The Tour of Britain is now the big goal and I’m training hard for that and its a big objective for me and the team. I have ridden it before and its tough and not going to be easy. The big goal for me is to win a stage and that would be awesome for the team.”

Owain Doull (GB Academy): “We’re all going pretty well and have just come out of a two week hard training camp. I felt pretty good and as a rider, I do always tend to go pretty well at the back end of the year. It has been a hard year and a big step up from the Junior ranks. You go from one of the strongest as a Junior where you don’t have to race that clever so it has been up and down as a senior. I have had a few top 10s in prems and stuff so that’s been goods.

Owain now heads for Belgium and some kermesses as training for the European road race championships.

Russell Downing (Endura Racing): “You could tell that was a race! I started at the back and I was struggling for a while but got better and better and had a few digs to open up the legs. I have been back off holiday for eight days and they have been eight really hard days. A few four and half hour rides and six hour rides. A big build up now for the Tour of Britain and what is coming up.”

“It was good to get a hit out and I’m looking to do a good ride in the Sheffield GP next week which is home ground. I didn’t want to go straight into a crit without having done one so this was a good one to get stuck into and do a bit.”

“once upon a time I’d be a bit scared of the Tour of Britain and think the hitters are coming but now I know what I need to do. That is why I had the break. I was mentally tired after going since January and disappointed with the ride in the nationals so I wanted to put that behind me and refocus and that’s what I am doing now.”

“The sun was shining on Wednesday and I did six and half hours and so the morale is back”!

“I’ve been doing four and half hours in the morning and then having a break and then go out with the lads in the evening and take it easy. We have a great scene down there and so if I do four and half on my own and then two with the lads, that’s a great days ride.”

Russell has a few stage races to help prepare for the Tour of Britain and says that “if it’s a four or five day stage race, its perfect. You can smash it every day and dig deep and not worry about destroying yourself. That is why I have had a really hard week now to put in more of a base. I feel a bit dead so I will have a freshen up with a ride with Swifty in the morning so that should be good fun and see how the Saturday Chain is going.”

“I have heard the Tour of Britain is going to be the hardest one that have had and they are never easy and so I will be wanting to climb better than I have ever done and see if I can get in there on GC. Fifth is my best and it would be nice to top that but I have never won a stage of the Tour of Britain. I think second or third is best and so I want to beat that too”!

Here’s the race report in pictures ….

Owain Doull, a first year senior who the others praised for his power in the break.

As in previous years, the riders lined up on the cobbles for the start of the race in front of yet another a big big crowd.

Bernie Sulzberger, an early attack from the Raleigh GAC rider.

Dean Downing getting back to his best in an early move off the front.

Liam Holohan of Raleigh GAC  was in good form on the night and at the front at lot during the race.

A dangerous looking move by James McCallum, Rico Rogers and Graham Briggs. Despite all three being worthy of the win, it was brought back.

Dean Downing has another go down the barriers.

The winning move is lead by Owain Doull with Bernie Sulzberger in the background seeing the danger and crossing to the move.

Raleigh come to the front to set up the sprint for Briggs but in doing so, closed the gap to the break.

The top three share their champagne with the crowd.

Russell Downing tested the crit legs ahead of Sheffield next week complete with training wheels …

Richard Lang has great form coming into the final part of the year and the Tour of Britain.

A lone winner of the 3/4 race, .Dominic Smith, Dolan Bikes.


1. Richard Lang, Rapha Condor Sharp
2. Owain Doull, GB Academy
3. Bernie Sulzberger, Raleigh GAC
4. Rico Rogers, Node 4 Giordana
5. Graham Briggs, Raleigh GAC
6. Marcel Six, Metaltek Scott
7. Dean Downing, Rapha Condor Sharp
8. Russell Downing, Endura Racing
9. Tobyn Horton, Raleigh GAC
10. Ben Grenda, Rapha Condor Sharp
11. Alistair Slater, GB Academy
12. Tom Barras, Metaltek Scott
13. Simon Yates, GB Academy
14. Liam Holohan, Raleigh GAC
15. Tom Murray, IG Sigma Sport
16. James McCallum, Rapha Condor Sharp
17. Joe Kelly, GB Academy
18. James Sparking, Raleigh GAC
19. Evan Oliphant, Raleigh GAC
20. Simon Holt, Raleigh GAC
21. Jeroen Janssen Raleigh GAC
Rest at 1 lap

1.Dominic Smith, Dolan Bikes
2. Lee Brown, Holme Valley Wh
3. Ben Roberts, Bridlington CC
4. Lewis Jackson, Cottingham
5. 39
6. Lee Coulson, We Love Mountains
7. Peter Fielding Smith, Richardsons RT
8. Stephen Coates, We Love Mountains
9. Matthew Pearce, Bronte Wheelers
10. Thomas Ramsey, Crosstrax
11. Andy Rudd, Dirtwheels
12. Nicholas Armitstead, Dirtwheels
13. Thomas Hebditch, Dirtwheels
14. Paul Rymer, Wilsons, Wheels
15. Lee Cairns, Rossington
16. Colin Baldwin, Dennis Distr.
17. Richard Baldwin, Dinnington RC
18. 41
19. Alex Fold, Dirtwheels
20. Tom Sutton, West Yorkshire
21. Stuart Bannister, West Yorkshire Police

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