Swift and Durrell claim two impressive Tour Series wins
PUBLISHED: 11:17 30 May 2017 | UPDATED: 12:16 30 May 2017
Connor Swift and Rebecca Durrell were the individual winners on an action-packed day of cycling around Stevenage Old Town.
Swift’s victory was his second of the 10-round Tour Series, following success at Bath, while Durrell’s win saw her also crowned overall champion of the Matrix Fitness Grand Prix.
Swift and his Madison Genesis team played the tactics perfectly to beat off rivals JLT Condor over the 65 minutes raced.
With five laps to go his team massed at the front and after setting a blistering pace, launched the 21-year-old off the front to win by nine seconds from One Pro Cycling’s Steele Van Hoff in second and Graham Briggs of JLT in third.
Swift, a cousin of Team Sky’s Ben, said the tactics had been thought out prior to the race starting.
“It was the plan right from the start,” he said. “We knew that every team would want it to come down to a sprint finish and with JLT having three very fast guys here, the odds would have been against us.
“So we decided to take it up with eight minutes to go. The boys rode really hard for me and then they let me go with two to go.
“It was just a case of keeping my head down and going as hard as I could and it paid off. We got the team win on the night and the individual win.
“We knew it was close for the team leader jersey overall and that JLT would have to have a bad night for us to get it but we got the best outcome we could and I think everyone is happy.”
As well as victories in Bath and Stevenage, Swift was also second in Durham on Saturday evening and says the success he has had has come as a surprise.
He said: “I never expected it but my coach Kev Dawson give me an awesome plan. I’ve got good legs and am feeling really strong at the moment but without my team I probably wouldn’t have had the opportunity.
“It was a really fast course and about halfway through I thought ‘I’m never going to be able to pull this off’. But I got my head together and we got to the front of the race and I zoned in really.”
The near future will see Swift gear up for a shot at the British Championship.
He said: “I’ve got to get a few time trials in because I want to focus on the U23 nationals, in both the time trial and the road race. We’ll see how it goes.”