News: Good start for Saint Piran in France

British UCI cycling team, Saint Piran, started their season in France with a great fifth place for Charles Page in the UCI (category 1.2) Grand Prix de la Ville de Lillers one-day race. Manager Steve Lampier looks back at their performance

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News: Good start for Saint Piran in France

Team Press Release

Saint Piran’s Charles Page claimed a big fifth place finish in northern France last Sunday as the team competed in the UCI (category 1.2) Grand Prix de la Ville de Lillers one-day race. On a cold, sunny day, Jake Crossley, Gabz Cullaigh, Jacob Hennessy, Leon Mazzone, Tom Mazzone, Theo Obholzer and Charles Page from Saint Piran’s Continental team were among the 144 starters in the 186km event, which included big guns Lotto Soudal of Belgium, Groupama FDJ of France and Israel Cycling.

Saint Piran’s race plan was built around getting new signing Charles Page into the bunch sprint that is typically the climax of the GP Lillers. As Team DS, Steve Lampier said: “We had a plan to always be on the front foot in this race, which is normally won from a reduced sprint. We needed numbers ahead to have a numerical advantage in the finale to help Charles as best we can. So we set about being ever present in the moves to stay ahead.”

Gabz Cullaigh was integral to the plan, but sadly the former Movistar rider fell victim to an untimely crash and, as Steve puts it, that left the team “missing his horse power and tactical nous.” This left only Charles Page and Leon Mazzone in the front split in the last two laps, with Theo Obhlzer and Jake Crossley behind in the second group.

Steve says: “Charles had to be super aggressive to stay in the right position, even following a late move. He was third wheel in the last kilometre, crossing the line in fifth for a very respectable result. This shows his form is heading in the right direction with some bigger races and objectives on the horizon.”

On the performance as a whole, he said: “We had a plan and we executed it. While we did want a better result, all things considered, I will take fifth “ The Saint Piran DS also had good things to say about another new signing, Jake Crossley. The 18-year-old Cornish-born rider continues to impress: “He did what he had to do to help the lads and finished in the second group on the road. When we get to the hilly races in the late spring and summer he will be one to watch”

Next up is a trip to the world-famous Aintree racecourse for the prestigious Eddie Soens Memorial race, which is expected to attract a start list of more than 180m riders. The following day, the team will head to Belgium ahead of the Omloop het Waasland Pro Kermesse. And then it’s back to Belgium for the UCI 1.2 GP Criquielion on Sunday 20th March

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