Oli Stockwell shines again under the grey skies to lift North West Youth Tour title
PUBLISHED: 09:14 04 September 2018 | UPDATED: 09:17 04 September 2018
Welwyn Wheelers' Oli Stockwell added to his growing collection of trophies with overall victory at the North West Youth Tour.
The race is a prestigious event on the calendar for young riders with some of the best from across the country taking part.
Spread over three stages, it began with a time trial before two road race stages, held over two separate courses.
Stage three also involved time bonuses and it was these extra seconds that came to the aid of the British champion as he crossed the line first to clinch the overall win in the U16 Youth A boys category.
Held under grey skies and buffeted by strong winds, the field was thinned out more by attrition and persistence than outright attacks.
Stockwell had gone into the day behind Solihull’s Jack Rootkin-Gray but a win at the first sprint of the day put him into the virtual race lead.
That, however, was cancelled out at sprint number two with Rootkin-Gray getting his wheel over the line first but it was the third sprint which would prove a crucial turning point.
The Birmingham man failed to score and Stockwell’s win gave him the advantage on the road once more and he extended that by taking the fourth charge ahead of Rootkin-Gray in third.
A fourth win on the final sprint meant Stockwell had enough of lead to take the bonus seconds on the finishing line out of the equation.
But it proved immaterial anyway as Stockwell throw his hands up on the line, beating team-mate Joe Kiely and Rootkin-Gray, and giving him the overall crown by 17 seconds and the points competition.
Kiely was fourth overall 36 seconds adrift.
Euan Woodliffe had to settle for second overall in the Youth B Boys’ event for U14s, 17 seconds behind arch-rival Ben Partridge of Hetton Hawks.
However, he did have the consolation of finishing as the winner of the points classification and taking fourth on stage three.
Nathan Hardy rode well to finish in sixth place overall.
Ellen Bennett took fifth on the final stage of the U16 Youth A Girls’ race ahead of her Welwyn team-mate Iona Moir who was eighth.