Sheffield Grand Prix 2013

For one night only in July the city centre of Sheffield closes to cars but opens up a to an evening of professional criterium cycle racing. The event consists of both a women’s race followed by a men’s. The women’s race was the penultimate round of the British Cycling Womens National Road Race Series. For the men it was the climax of the British Cycling Elite Circuit Race Series. Before the action started I had walk round the course and spotted a number of the teams preparing for the night’s action. After a thorough inspection it was easy to tell who had the biggest bus – Madison Genesis. Would they provide the winning rider on the night too?

And the winner of the biggest bus competition is...

And the winner of the biggest bus competition is…

After securing our spot early we waited for the start of the Women’s Browns Sheffield Grand Prix. This pitched the newly crowned National Circuit Race Champion, Hannah Barnes, against the vastly experienced seven times National Cyclo-cross Champion, Helen Wyman. As well as having an excellent year as an individual Barnes was able to rely on her team MG Maxifuel for assistance. Wyman, riding for Kona Factory Team was going to have to look after herself.

Rider introductions and first up newly crowned National Champion Hannah Barnes

Rider introductions and first up newly crowned National Champion Hannah Barnes

Nearly ready to go

Nearly ready to go

The racing has started

The racing has started

First lap round

First lap round

Helen Wyman and Hannah Barnes well placed in the bunch

Helen Wyman and Hannah Barnes well placed in the bunch

There was a number of early breakaway attempts

There was a number of early breakaway attempts

A wise idea by Hannah Barnes to see where Helen Wyman was positioned

A wise idea by Hannah Barnes to see where Helen Wyman was positioned

Hannah Barnes makes sure she wins the intermediate sprint

Hannah Barnes makes sure she wins the intermediate sprint

Helen Wyman now checking on Hannah Barnes

Helen Wyman now checking on Hannah Barnes

Wyman makes a break for it

Wyman makes a break for it

The gap starts to grow and grow for the chasing pack

The gap starts to grow and grow for the chasing pack

Lap after lap Wyman extends her lead so there's plenty of time to celebrate before crossing the line

Lap after lap Wyman extends her lead so there’s plenty of time to celebrate before crossing the line

Nobody else in view as Wyman finally crosses the line

Nobody else in view as Wyman finally crosses the line

The race for second is on and Hannah Barnes gets it

The race for second is on and Hannah Barnes gets it

After the presentations and the Cava fight it was on to the Men’s Claremont Sheffield Grand Prix. Doncaster’s Graham Briggs of Team Raleigh was hoping to regain his 2012 Sheffield Grand Prix title after a season beset by illness. In his way were a pair of local brothers in the form of Madison Genesis’ Dean Downing and the new National Circuit Race Champion Russell Downing of NetApp-Endura. Added to this was the Elite Circuit Race Series title was up for grabs. GB Academy’s George Atkins was leading going into the final race from Olympic gold medalist Ed Clancy. The Rapha Condor JTL team would be out in strength to get their man Clancy enough points to win.

Time for the Men's race

Time for the Men’s race

All checks in place and the riders are ready to go

All checks in place and the riders are ready to go

The Claremont Sheffield Prix 2013 has started!

The Claremont Sheffield Prix 2013 has started!

The large peloton soon become strung out

The large peloton soon become strung out

Russ Downing keen to show off his new National Champion stripes. How low on a bike does he position himself?1

Russ Downing keen to show off his new National Champion stripes. How low on a bike does he position himself?1

Raleigh's Graham Briggs tried a solo breakaway but the Doncaster rider was reeled in after a couple of laps

Raleigh’s Graham Briggs tried a solo breakaway but the Doncaster rider was reeled in after a couple of laps

As the light faded it quickly became the the Sheffield Nocturne

As the light faded it quickly became the the Sheffield Nocturne

Lapped riders and a very close motorbike made the final sprint rather chaotic

Lapped riders and a very close motorbike made the final sprint rather chaotic

"Hands up, I won!" The final result took a time to confirm but Dean Downing knew he had won

“Hands up, I won!” The final result took a time to confirm but Dean Downing knew he had won

So the team with the biggest bus did win! The podium became a local affair as the first three were all from South Yorkshire as Graham Briggs came in second and Russ Downing third. A ninth place for George Atkins ensured him enough points to be crowned the Series winner for 2013.

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One response to “Sheffield Grand Prix 2013

  1. Pingback: Sheffield Grand Prix 2013 | cyclesheffield | Sc...

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