After such a successful relaunch in 2013, the Milk Race returned to Nottingham city centre for a second year. This year we were lucky enough to be invited back as VIP’s which allowed us a nice viewing point to capture the race. It also mean’t we could sort through photos in the rather lovely Nottingham Council House.
As we arrived the Family ride was taking place, giving members of the public a chance to ride the same 1.2km route as the Elite Men and Women. We got to witness the future of British Cycling and even see a 4 year old boy tackle the route (multiple times) on a balance bike, what a champion! The crowds were out in force this year and the sun came out to thank them. It was great to see many fans and exhibitors truly embracing cycling!
This years turn out for the Women’s Elite race was truly overwhelming, including Katie Archibald whose exploits on the track and the road speak for them self. Wiggle Honda arrived in Nottingham with a full team this year, including German rider Charlotte Becker who had arrived in the UK just the night before from China!
Wiggle Honda demonstrated their dominance and established a very strong breakaway group consisting of Charlotte Becker and Olympic Gold Medalists Dani King and Laura Trott. Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International’s Katie Archibald was also part of this group. The breakaway were full gas until the finish, putting more and more time between them and peloton. Despite their spectacular effort, Wiggle Honda were unable to drop the Flying Scotswoman and Katie out sprinted Laura Trott on the line.
This year the elite men were a little too eager to get out tear up the circuit as it started with crash and the race was black flagged almost immediately. After a little confusion the race was restarted and the action could recommence. Rapha Condor JLT arrived with a strong team consisting of fast men, Graham Biggs, Felix English (last years winner) and Olympic Gold Medalist, Ed Clancy.
A few more crashes around the circuit lead to a slightly confusing but very entertaining race. The riders were just flying around the technical circuit. Demonstrating their outstanding bike handling skills to the packed crowds, cornering at speed across old tram lines in Nottingham’s city centre.
Towards the end of the race it became clearer which groups were leading and chasing. A successful breakaway of three riders were too strong for the larger chasing pack which contained last years winner Felix English. Graham Biggs of Rapha Condor JLT took the win with a great sprint ahead of Raleigh’s Mathew Boulo and Matt Cronshaw of Velosure – Giordana RT.