|British track riders preparing for the Olympic Games in Sydney, shine in the nine|
day 49th Olympia Tour in Holland, over one thousand three hundred and fifty kilometres
a UCI 2.5 category event.
Multi talented Chris Newton from Stockton, was denied the race leaders jersey by
one second in the five kilometre prologue time trial when he raced home to second
spot as the race got under in Tilbury. Belgium based British rider Oliver Perry (MGI)
finished first in 5min 57sec
More British success came on the toughest day, stage four, held over a one hundred
and ninety three kilometre loop starting and finishing in Bucthen just north of Mastricht.
This stage included many of the hills in Amstel Gold and also the famous Valkenburg
as used in the World Championships.
Paul Manning (WCPP) from Tamworth, along with Cori Sweet (Hohenfelder Concorde) brother
of Jay Sweet the Commonwealth Road champion, were among a group of nine who went
clear after only ten kilometres.
Manning out powered Sweet in the final sprint after the group had fragmented in the
Speedy Newton the former national 25 mile Time Trial champion turned in an excellent
ride on stage seven to take the twenty three kilometre time trial in 28mins 40sec
on a course based around the village of Bedum.
Manning filled second position at seven seconds, and former world team time trial
champion, Tom Cordes (Piels-Gazelle Fina) was third 34sec back. Newton’s winning
speed was an impressive 48.164 kilometres per hour.
Newton the north easterner, now with his tale up made it two stages back to back
when he took victory in the next 200 kilometre penultimate leg into a fierce head
wind from Bedum to Almere.
Eight riders contested the final sprint where Newton out paced Peter Jork (Kia Villiger
Suisse) by two seconds after 5hrs and 55min of racing.
Over night race leader, Jan van Velzen (Bankgiroloterij-Batavus) was declared the
race winner when the ninth and final 169 kilometre stage was cancelled after only
32 kilometres due to one hundred and sixty kilometres per hour gale force winds which
had felled trees on the course ahead.
1 Jan van Velzen (Bankgiroloterij-Batavus) 31hrs 25min 49sec.
2 Tom Hoedemakers (Spa-Oki) at 1min 11sec.
3 Joost Legtenberq (Axa Cycling Team) at 1min 46sec.
45 Chris Newton (GB) at 51min 36sec.
47 Paul Manning (WCPP) at 53min.