Woking cyclist Ieuan Woods insisted he will continue to go for solo breakaways despite missing out on the win at the Prudential RideLondon 2016 Grand Prix.
Now in its fourth year, Prudential RideLondon is a three-day festival of cycling that sees thousands of riders take to the streets of the capital, as well as some of the biggest names in the sport.
For the first time in RideLondon history, there were races taking place on a third day, with Woods among many taking to the Lee Valley VeloPark at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Friday.
Woods was selected to ride for London for Friday’s Youth Grand Prix A race, finishing tenth following a frantic bunch sprint at the end of the race.
The 15-year-old Charlotteville CC rider went for a solo win from several laps out, but was left ruing the pace of the peloton after they swept him up in the closing stages.
“I was up the front until two laps to go, but the peloton was so strong that they just caught me up, which was really gutting,” said the Winston Churchill School pupil.
“The peloton was really quick, when you’re off at the front it’s really intimidating, they’re so strong but I had a bit of a gap but just couldn’t hold on.
“I like riding on my own, away from the group, it’s the best way to win and I’m a good time trial list – avoiding crashes.”
As well as hundreds of pro cyclists, RideLondon also attracts thousands of amateurs who take to the roads in the annual London-Surrey 100 and FreeCycle events, while the London-Surrey 46 was introduced for the first time this year.
And Woods is hopeful that his RideLondon experience will not be the end of his competition against the best age group riders in the country, believing that seeing so many people out on their bikes is hugely encouraging for the sport.
“It was such a tough course, but that’s the thing about Prudential RideLondon – you’re riding against the toughest competitors on the hardest courses and that’s what makes it so good. It’s really narrow, a great experience,” he added.
“It’s really inspirational to be here, being at the place where all the medals were at in 2012.
“In the winter I’m at the velodrome every couple of weeks, you can’t quite believe you’re here, it’s good to see what it’s like to be a professional and elite rider.
“Next up for me is the National Series in Scarborough on August 14, and taking part in the RideLondon will be excellent preparation for that.”
Prudential RideLondon is the world’s largest festival of cycling. Prudential is proud to support people’s ambitions. Visit www.pru.co.uk/ambitions