Journals Riders

Inside the Tour of Britain: Ethan Vernon’s race diary #8

Another tough day at the Tour of Britain as Ethan and his teammates work to support Connor Swift's GC efforts

Ethan Vernon (Great Britain) and Rory Townsend (Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes) are keeping race diaries for The British Continental throughout the Tour of Britain. This is Ethan’s diary entry after stage 7

We were all fully committed to getting in the break, since we’ve missed the last 6 of them, but so were 100 other riders!

Stage 7 wrap

The penultimate stage of the race was a 186.5-kilometre route from historic Warwick finishing with three ascents of the 1.4-kilometre, 4.9% average gradient climb of Burton Dassett. On paper this looked to be the second toughest stage of the tour, and so it proved. A took over an hour for the break of the day to form (containing Van Baarle of Team Ineos and Cameron Meyer of Mitchelton-Scott) as teams fought furiously to get their riders away.

Things then calmed down until the final series of hills. The Great Britain team were once again visible at the front of the race as the bunch hit the finishing circuit, helping to place their leader Connor Swift towards the head of affairs. Connor clung on up the final ascent to finish just 16 seconds down on the flying stage winner Mathieu Van der Poel (Corendon-Circus). Ethan finished 56th.

Ethan’s stage 7 diary

It was a pretty tough day out. We were all fully committed to getting in the break, since we’ve missed the last 6 of them, but so were 100 other riders! Every team wanted to be part of the early move and therefore the race was fullon for the first half of the race. My Normalised Power for the first 90minutes was 340w!

It took 70 km for the move to eventually stick, but it only contained Ineos and Mitchelton-Scott, with a Movistar and AG2R rider chasing just behind for the most of the day. It made the day go by pretty quickly to be fair because just after the feed the pace started to ramp up for positioning GC riders into the finishing circuit. 

We were riding for Connor today so we all committed to a mini leadout for him into the first time up the circuit climb. Matt [Walls], Jim [Brown] and I all got over the first time up the climb so tried again to re-position Connor the second time up. Jim and I got dropped over the top with less than 10 km to go. Connor hit out up the last climb but unfortunately got caught, eventually losing just 16 seconds to the stage winner Van der Poel. 

2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain – Stage 7: Warwick to Burton Dassett Country Park, England – Great Britain Cycling Team (Ethan Vernon far right). Photo: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com

Tomorrow looks a pretty tough stage with 2000m of climbing in just 160km. We know about the climbs with the stage being on our local Academy training roads. There are a few teams who will be after a bunch sprint, including Corendon-Circus (for Van der Poel), Jumbo-Visma (for Dylan Groenewegen) and us of course for Matt Walls. It would be really nice for us to finish the Tour of Britain with a win in the city the majority of the team is based in.

Featured photo: SWPix.com

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