Words: Ian Lean

Photos: Simon Nieborak and Ian Lean

The morning of race day was like we hadn't left from the day before, rain and heavy clouds greeted riders again for the second day running. When the uplift opened at 8.30am you could tell riders were reluctant to leave the coziness of their campers and motorhomes; only a handful of eager young guns frothing for another day on the hill fronted the queue.

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We all thought the Met Office was lying to us (again) with what was meant to be overcast conditions with occasional sunny spells! But roughly about 10am, when we all thought we were in for another soggy day a big yellow thing in the sky decided to make an appearance (even if it was only briefly)! From there on in it stayed mostly cloudy but dry. Hooray!

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It wasn't until seeding started that we began to see the riders ditching the waterproofs and wearing their fresh 2016 race kits. It was a nice change when you could finally identify who everyone was and add a bit of colour to the picture! It was hard to tell which elite men were going to steal the show with everyone putting in solid runs all morning.

The usual suspects were all in the mix after seeding: Matt Simmonds, Steve Peat and Gee Atherton going 1,2 and 3. Race runs, however, saw some changes. Having looked pinned all weekend Innes Graham slotted himself into 2nd on board his new Propain machine behind Gee Atherton. Matt Simmonds took 3rd, Phil Atwill steaming into 4th, Marc Beaumont 5th and Peaty taking 6th spot.

Elite women saw little changes from seeding: Manon Carpenter, Tahnee Seagrave and Katy Curd taking the 3 top spots respectively.

With the first World Cup round in Lourdes next weekend, this was definitely a testing weekend for all which should bode well for the brits hoping to bring it home...

Good luck to all the Brits heading out to race. Hope you all enjoyed the coverage from Simon Nieborak and I this weekend. See you on the hill. Yew!

Elite Men

1: Gee Atherton

2: Innes Graham

3: Matt Simmonds

Elite Women

1: Manon Carpenter

2: Tahnée Seagrave

3: Katy Curd

Full Results

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Innes Graham was focused and composed all day long and it paid off handsomely.
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That's the spirit. 

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