49th Olympia Tour (Holland)

Trackies excel in stage race

BRITAIN'S World Class Performance Plan track squad excelled in the fast Olympia Tour of Holland, which came to a premature end on Sunday when the final stage nine was cancelled due to high winds.

Chris Newton was Britain's top rider, winning two stages and Paul Manning one, while Rob Hayles came close when he was fourth on the opening stage of this 49th edition of this UCI 2.5 category race.

Manning tasted victory first, outsprinting Corey Sweet - brother of Australian professional Jay Sweet (Big Mat) - on the 184 kilometre stage four. The pair had broken away to finish 30 seconds clear of the main field.

It was a British one-two on the stage seven time trial, with Newton winning the 23km test in 28-40 at an average speed of 48kph behind the winner, Olivier Penney of Switzerland. Manning was second at seven seconds.

The following day Newton won the stage eight finishing sprint, in what should have been the penultimate stage. He beat Switzerland's Peter Jorg by two seconds after 198km in a time of 5-55-46.

Police halted the final stage, which was battered by winds of between 100 and 120kph. Fairs, carnivals and a hockey match also had to be cancelled.

Holland's Jan Van Velzen (Bankgiroloterij) was declared the winner in a time of 31 hours 25 minutes 49 seconds. Newton was placed 45th at 51-36 and Manning 47th at 53 minutes. Newton was also seventh overall on points.

Prologue - May 20: Tilburg, ITT 4.9 km

126 Riders from 8 different countries started in the ITT. Oleg Grichkine of the Moscow City Sports Ass. (Rus) didn't start. Oliver Penny (MGI) won the race, taking the first leader's jersey with just over a second to Great Britain's Chris Newton.

1 Olivier Penney (Swi) MGI Fietsen 5.57.45 (49.34 km/h)
2 Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team 1.28
3 Andrea Collinelli (Ita) Italian National Team 5.68 (World pursuit champ!)
4 Rudi Kemna (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 6.32
5 Mauro Trentini (Ita) (Ita) Italian National Team 6.85
6 Wilfried Bastiaanse (Ned) MGI Fietsen 8.83
7 Tom Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki 9.42
8 Renger Ypenburg (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 9.77
9 Paul Van Schalen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 9.79
10 Jan Van Velzen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 10.03

Stage 4 - May 24: Buchten - Buchten, 184.7 km

Dennis Heij (3rd) was at least the loser in stage 4 of the Olympia's Tour. In the last lap the three leaders (Heij, Paul Manning and Corey Sweet) had enough time to make Dennis Heij the new leader. An attack by Manning - with Sweet on his wheel - wasn't important for Heij. He didn't want stage-victories, as the overall classification was more important to him.

However, his teammanager, Arthur van Dongen, in the following car made a mistake. He forgot to look to the classifications list, so he didn't know that Corey Sweet (yes the younger brother of Jay) was near the top of the GC too. The new leader: Corey Sweet.

Heij: "Stupid. I should have known he was up there in the classification too...But, now I need the individual time trial on Friday to take over the lead!"

Sweet has only one teammate left in his Hohenfelder-Concorde team, so Heij thinks he can reduce the 17 seconds.

In this, the Queen-stage of the Olympia's Tour, there was one big fall as well. A car came onto the parcours and hit some riders, including Wim van de Meulenhof and Oliver Penney. Penney went to hospital after this stage for a check-up.

1 Paul Manning (GBr) British National Team 4.59.10
2 Corey Sweet (Aus) Hohenfelder-Concorde
3 Dennis Heij (Ned) MGI Fietsen 0.30
4 Peter Schep (Ned) Rabobank Amateurs 2.16
5 Alain Van Katwijk (Ned) MGI Fietsen
6 Jan Van Velzen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus
7 Edwin Dunning (Ned) Axa Cycling Team
8 Sandro Bijnen (Ned) Axa Cycling Team 3.09
9 Barry Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki
10 Danny Daelman (Bel) Spar-Oki 3.19
11 Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team

Stage 7 - May 26: Bedum, ITT, 23 km

The second stage of the day was an individual time trial, 23 km long around Bedum. Great Britain's Chris Newton won in 28.40" (48.134 km/h), and Jan van Velzen (Bankgiroloterij) remained the leader.

1 Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team 28.40.0 (48.134 km/h)
2 Paul Manning (GBr) British National Team 0.07.1
3 Tom Cordes (Ned) Piels-Gazelle 0.33.9
4 Jan Van Velzen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 0.45.5
5 Danny Daelman (Bel) Spar-Oki 0.51.8
6 Cristiano Citton (Ita) Italian National Team 0.52.1
7 Tom Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki 1.01.8
8 Andrea Collinelli (Ita) Italian National Team 1.05.5
9 Angelo Van Melis (Ned) Axa Cycling Team 1.18.4
10 Jens Mouris (Ned) Van Vliet-Weba 1.27.1

Stage 8 - May 27: Bedum - Almere, 198 km

Time trial ace, Chris Newton (GBr) won the sprint for the 8th stage of Olympia's Tour on Saturday, backing up from his win in the ITT on Friday as well. Dennis Heij (MGI Fietsen) was the leader for 140 km out of a total of 198. His maximum lead was more than 7 minutes over the peloton, but in the finale the peloton caught him.

The overall leader, Jan van Velzen (Bankgiroloterij), has more than 1 minute over Belgian Tom Hoedemakers (Spar-Oki). The Olympia's Tour ends on Sunday.

1. Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team 5.55.46
2. Peter Jörg (Swi) Kia-Villiger 0.02
3. Rudi Kemna (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus
4. Wilco Zuijderwijk (Ned) Van Vliet-Weba
5. Corey Sweet (Aus) Hohenfelder-Concorde
6. Barry Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki
7. Urs Spycher (Swi) KIA-Villiger
8. Angelo Van Melis (Ned) Axa Cycling Team
9. Wim Omloop (Bel) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus
10. Jan Van Velzen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus


1. Jan Van Velzen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 31.25.49
2. Tom Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki 1.11
3. Joost Legtenberg (Ned) Axa Cycling Team 1.46
4. Paul Van Schalen (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 1.48
5. Wilco Zuijderwijk (Ned) Van Vliet-Weba 2.08
6. Rudi Kemna (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 2.29

45. Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team 51.36


1. Rudi Kemna (Ned) Bankgiroloterij-Batavus 102
2. Wilco Zuijderwijk (Ned) Van Vliet-Weba 97
3. Corey Sweet (Aus) Hohenfelder-Concorde 61
4. Tom Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki 55
5. Barry Hoedemakers (Ned) Spar-Oki 54
6. Danny Daelman (Bel) Spar-Oki 53
7. Chris Newton (GBr) British National Team 49