ONE Pro Cycling held a strong position as the peloton rolled out of Edmunbyers for Stage 2 of the Tour of the Reservoir. After yesterday’s performance Karol Domagalski held the yellow jersey with team mates Kamil Gradek and Tom Stewart in 2nd & 3rd respectively. Once again there were strong winds around the roads of Derwent Reservoir where the peloton would complete one full lap of the Reservoir circuit before 3 large laps taking in the climb of Meadows Edge. Once the peloton had tackled the grueling ascent what was left of the peloton surged around a final 3 laps of the Reservoir Circuit before the winner was crowned.
In the early stages of the race a group of six riders went clear with several teams represented. The danger man in the break was Elliot Porter of Neon Velo who was only 2 minutes down on General Classification. The decision was made for Tom Baylis and Sam Williams to move to the head of the peloton, control the tempo behind and look after the yellow jersey.
The break gained a maximum advantage of 3 minutes as riders were constantly dropped from the peloton due to the pressure being asserted by ONE Pro Cycling. As the race entered the final 3 laps of the Reservoir circuit the break held a gap of 1 minute and had whittled down from six to just two riders, Graham Briggs of JLT Condor and Connor Swift of Madison Genesis.
With just over one lap (20km) remaining three riders joined the leaders at the front of the race including Kiwi Hayden McCormick and held an advantage of 25 seconds as the race received the bell to signal one lap to go. As they hit the climb to Manor house with 18km remaining, the main GC threats took on the race, jumping across to the leaders and isolating ONE Pro Cycling who had became distanced.
Spotting the danger Hayden McCormick dropped back around the yellow jersey and drove the chase group back towards the leaders. Kamil Gradek was dropped from the group due to the pressure of the race and the amount of work he had delivered earlier in the stage. Heading into the final kilometre the Kiwi duo of McCormick and Oram put in an impressive performance to bring the gap down to just 20 seconds as Domagalski and Tom Stewart looked to save the jersey.
The Pain etched faces of the leading riders could be seen forcing pressure through their pedals, giving everything to reach the line on the final energy sapping drag to the finish. Crossing the line first was Tom Moses (JLT Condor) with team mate Ian Bibby close behind in second place.
Tom Stewart battled up the climb crossing the line in 9th place, 20 seconds behind the stage winner with Domagalski finishing 13th and 23 seconds back. Given the dominating performance that Stewart and Domagalski executed on the previous stage, their time advantage was enough for Stewart to slip into the yellow leaders jersey and Domagalski to take a superb 2nd place overall on the GC.
An excellent start to the Grand Prix series by the whole team with Hayden McCormick securing 9th place on GC to see ONE Pro Cycling with 3 riders in the top 10 overall. The team will be back in action next weekend at the UCI ranked 1.1 Velothon in Wales.