This year’s Pearl Izumi Tour Series has eleven rounds, starting in Kirkcaldy and finishing in Ipswich. The Johnson Health Tech Grand Prix Series, the Women’s Series takes place over five rounds in 2013, with Stoke-on-Trent, home of sponsors Johnson Health Tech UK, hosting Round One, and Aylsham the final round. We were hoping that this would also be visiting Torquay like last year but it didn’t! We will hopefully bring you more from the teams from this race later in the year.
The Tour Series is now at the halfway point with Team UK Youth in the overall lead, wearing the highly distinctive, Pearl Izumi Tour Series leader’s jerseys (seen above). Team Raleigh rider Alex Blain is leading the Sprints competition. Alex Blain took second at the recently revived Milk Race. Team Raleigh are also second overall in the standings.
We went down to Torquay to watch round five of the series. At this point all the teams are fairly well established and everybody knows who to look out for. Although the racing was fairly consistent each lap, the sprint laps added to the excitement.
The course is very fast and slightly different to last years circuit. There were no successful breakaway groups but some good competition for the sprints jersey. Alex Blain was looking to defend his IG Gold jersey for the leader in the sprints competition. Kristian House from Rapha Condor JLT was there to push Alex every step of the way.
Team Raleigh being second overall, they were pushing hard to keep 3 riders near the front towards the end but Alex Blain crashed with 3 laps to and had to make his way back through a busy field. In the end, Team UK Youth took another win to retain their lovely Pearl Izumi Tour Series leader’s jerseys.