Adam Blythe yesterday became the fourth Tinkoff team member to pull on the road champion’s jersey of their respective nation. In Stockton-on-Tees, Blythe beat one of the fastest sprinters in the world, Mark Cavendish, to the line after a tough day ended in a bunch sprint.

In spite of spending almost the whole day either chasing or subsequently riding in a break, Blythe still had the strength to contest the win, and rode away as British champion.

Having formed part of a four-man breakaway – the third escape of the race – Blythe and his breakaway companions had managed to stay out for much of the closing stages of the race.

Despite his work throughout the race, Blythe had enough energy left to contest the sprint, as he explained from the finish. “I’m so chuffed – it feels great to have won the jersey. It was a long day really, from 70km out there were four of us tapping through and when we entered the circuit the gap wasn’t that big. After it came back together behind I just sat in and saved what I could for the sprint. I never knew I was going to get it but I never thought I wouldn’t as well, I just gave it my all and crossed the line first.”

Having started the day as the only Tinkoff rider in the race, it was going to be a hard task to fight for the win when some of the other teams had several riders who could work together to bring their fast man to the finishing stretch.

Blythe made the most of the opportunities that presented themselves, reading the race expertly and making the key decisions at just the right time. “Not having any teammates in the race meant it was all about selecting the right move. The circuit wasn’t too difficult so it was all about timing, only attacking when it was worth attacking.”

As he heads to a team training camp in Livigno next week, Blythe will be one of three other Tinkoff team members – Roman Kreuziger, Juraj Sagan and Rafal Majka – who are each wearing their national champion’s jersey for the first time.

Blythewas excited to be wearing the colours of the British national champion. “I’m looking forward to the getting the new white kit now! It’s the highlight of my career so far. I just want to get the jersey and all the kit to go with it – white shorts, white bike…”

British National Championship
1. Adam Blythe (Tinkoff) 04:31:07
2. Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) +00:00:00
3. Andrew Fenn (Team Sky) +00:00:00


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