Interiew – Adam Blythe winning again


Winner of the Otley Circuit Race on Wednesday night is looking forward to getting stuck into some road racing

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Interiew – Adam Blythe winning again

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Elbow to elbow with Ed Clancy in the drag race to the line

After the win in the Jersey Road Race comes another victory for NFTO’s Adam Blythe who is quickly finding his legs in a very different style of racing for the Sheffield rider who was in the World Tour before being signed by NFTO.

Adam, who has been right up there in bunch kicks in the World Tour, was at the head of the one in Otley on Wednesday night, winning by a narrow margin from double Olympic champion Ed Clancy. “It was a strange race tonight” he said guarding a crate of beer, part of his prize for winning.

“It was quite easy in the peloton into the headwind up the hill and then the downhill wasn’t too bad. It was very hard when you were out front when you were in a two up or small group though. Overall, it was a fast race with a lot of attacks but they were always coming back”.


Adam in one of many breaks for freedom late in the race.

Otley is renowned for not being a traditional style crit with a long lap on a short kermesse style course. “I enjoyed the race” says Adam who had won the 3-4 race at the venue as a youngster in 2005 with the now organiser Giles Pidcock third. He was 8th in the main race in 2011 but 2014 was certainly his year in front of the biggest crowd yet.

“I started at the back and stayed there for the first seven laps trying to figure out the race and then I moved to the front and tried to get away to test the legs a bit and see how everyone else was going”.

“I thought it might end up being a sprint but you never know what can happen. A little group might have clipped off so I tried to make sure I was in every little move that went away and it was quite a flowing race which suited me”.

“The last three laps I think everyone thought it was going to be a sprint. I saw Rapha setting it up for Ed (Clancy) and then as soon as that happened, Dean got us together and Dale Appleby started to pull some turns for me and then Russell Downing came up and did a lap and half for me too. Then I had Dean taking me around and he did a real good job.”

“It’s sad that I couldn’t do anything for Dean being his last Otley race so I’m hoping he’ll be happy with me winning!”

Over the years, the final corner, especially in the wet, has always been crucial to the win at Otley and some have said that they’ve needed big whatsits to get round there first but Adam explained it wasn’t too bad on Wednesday night in the dry.


Time to spray some champagne

“I think it’s not as tight as it used to be! I didn’t have to brake into that last turn after Ed had hit me before it and that kind of worked out perfect in the head wind finish tonight”. Perfect indeed as Adam came past Ed as they approached the line clinched the win by a good half a wheel.

Rest of the season
Prior to the race, I’d heard Adam talking about wanting to get on with some road racing and he explained that he probably won’t do all of the crits coming up for which there are plenty in July.

“I’d like to get stuck into road racing. The Tour of Britain is a big hit and I like to do well in that. Crits are okay but they take a lot out of you with the travel for a one hour long race. I’ll do the odd crit; the nationals, Sheffield, but I really want to focus on the road and do well in the Surrey Classic and the Tour of Britain”.


Celebrating another win, this time in Jersey in June.

Finally, I’d seen Adam in a good group at the British RR Champs and asked how the race had gone for him. “I was in a group with David Millar, Pete (Kennaugh), Ben (Swift), (Joshua) Edmondson and Simon Yates and thought, this is good.”

“I was feeling good and thought I could do a good ride but I think I went too deep and the body failed. I couldn’t get enough oxygen into the muscles and started to cramp. That was the end of the race which was disappointing as I had wanted to do well. I’d tried to prepare the best I could for it but obviously didn’t do as great as I should have done”.

“As much as you try to argue the case, there is no way you can compete with those guys (WorldTour) in a hard race like that which is five hours of attack, attack, attack. We can do that for two hours maybe, the guys who have done the crits, but the guys like Pete (Kennaugh), are doing 200k day in, day out in races like Suisse or Dauphine so there is no way you can try and replicate what they are doing”.

“After 160/170k, most guys in the British teams are getting to the end of their legs where as those guys are riding into it and not slowing down. You could see that for the last few hours…”

Good luck to Adam as the we start to get more and more road races in the second half of the season.

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