Vitus Pro Cycling Team travelled to Guisborough in North East England for the East Cleveland Klondike Grand Prix on Sunday (April 29, 2018), the second round of the HSBC Spring Cup Series.
Local people offered a warm welcome, even decorating their homes and villages to welcome the race. People turned out in their thousands to witness the racing, despite the rain showers and freezing temperatures.
Vitus Pro Cycling Team’s riders younger riders had a tough start to the race, learning just how demanding senior racing can be, especially on such an unforgiving course.
Cherie Pridham, the team’s owner and manager, said the demanding parcours had offered a steep learning curve for her young riders.
“The more inexperienced riders need to learn from these types of events, which is the opportunity we are giving them,” she said.
Nineteen-year-old Grant Martin, now in his second season under Pridham’s management, was among the developing talents who grasped the nettle, riding with Josh Hunt, his more experienced team-mate, in the main bunch. The teenager ended the day as the team’s highest-placed finisher, crossing the line in 22nd place.
“It was a learning curve for our young riders and another opportunity to get a tough race in the legs ahead of what is going to be a big week for us at the Tour de Yorkshire, which the riders and the team are all looking forward to,” Pridham said.
Adam Kenway, whose heroic ride at the Rutland-Melton CiCLE Classic seven days earlier defined the race, suffered bad luck and disappointment in East Cleveland.
“It was a difficult race. We did expect it to be a tougher one than last year, when it ended in a group sprint. This year though, the big group was split to pieces on the hills on the closing lap, and we also suffered some punctures, one to Adam Kenway in particular.”
With the Tour de Yorkshire looming, Pridham will call upon all her experience to rally her young squad and steel her more experienced troops of the battle ahead.