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Jens Voigt's final pro bike – complete with 'shut up legs' mantra
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Swift and Alaphilippe round out podium
Adam Blythe (NFTO) is the day's winner
"It's hard to say how much this means to me," Blythe said after claiming his first win of 2014. "But you could see how emotional it was as my face said it all.
"OK, it's not like I won the worlds or anything, but this is very big race for a British rider to win, especially in this setting in front of the Queen's house. I hope she was watching."
Swift was one the pre-race favourites with the event expected to finish in a bunch sprint and the 26-year-old appeared to be in a perfect position after five of his teammates, including 2012 Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins, had worked hard in the middle part of the race to get him into a breakaway group.
"It would have been nice to have won but I am really happy with second," said Swift. "I've known Adam since I was seven-years-old and we've got a lot of history, so I knew he was the one to watch.
"I knew I needed to keep an eye on him and I could see he was looking for me on the run-in. I tried to react to his move but he's a really fast sprinter and once he got the jump on me he was away."
Julian Alaphilippe took third for Omega Pharma-QuickStep ahead of BMC's Philippe Gilbert while the final member of the break, Kristijan Koren (Cannondale), came across the line three seconds down on Blythe and Swift
How it unfolded
There had been a number of early attacks from the 147-man peloton which left London bathing in the summer sunshine after a pause in the morning deluge which meant the riders were confronted with wet roads for the majority of the event.
The first significant break came in Richmond Park after 13km of racing when six riders got away and established a gap of just over a minute back to the main bunch. The break held their advantage through the early stretches out into Surrey's narrow country roads, of which many of them still smeared with rain and mud.
Wiggins and teammate Ian Stannard did much of the work to control the race as Sky took control of the peloton with their intention to close the gap and get Swift into contention for any later break.
The plan worked perfectly, and when Gilbert made his move on the approach to Box Hill, Swift was one of 10 men who leapt onto his wheel with around 70km left to race.
With Sky's work done back in the bunch, they dropped off and left the initiate to chase for other teams.
Taking up the responsibility in Sky's absence was Cannondale who were looking to Elia Viviani for a good result. With 50km left in the race, the leading break of 11 riders had built a lead of over a minute and they were looking comfortable out in front as Cannondale's efforts where having little impact on reducing the gap.
As the leaders approached Headley Heath and Leatherhead, Gilbert and Swift kept the pace high to make sure there were no passengers in the group. Gilbert then attacked the breakaway between Raynes Park and Wimbledon which caused a split and whittled down the break to five riders.
Gilbert looked intent on claiming the win on his own and another attack saw the Belgian and Alaphilippe briefly drop Swift, Blythe and Koren before it all came back together again.
When the five riders hit Putney High Street and crossed Putney Bridge for the run alongside the River Thames towards Westminster, it looked like it anyone's race to win.
Once the riders were onto The Mall, it became clear that Blythe and Swift were going to decide the 2014 victor and it was the former BMC rider who upset Swift for a confidence boosting win.
"In the last kilometre I knew I had plenty in the tank," Blythe said. "I just wanted to make sure I got everything out and didn't leave it too late to make my move.
"I knew that if I was close to Swifty I'd have a chance. I hugged close to the barriers and had a go. Now I feel like I can mix it with the big boys."
Steve Lampier of Node4 Velosure claimed the King of the Mountains title while Dutchman and Giant-Shimano stagiaire Steven Lammertin won the sprint contest.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Adam Blythe (GBr) NFTO||4:39:53|
|2||Ben Swift (GBr) Team Sky|
|3||Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step||0:00:01|
|4||Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team|
|5||Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale||0:00:03|
|6||Sam Bennett (Irl) Team NetApp - Endura||0:00:12|
|7||Loic Vliegen (Bel) BMC Racing Team||0:00:13|
|8||Stef Clement (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team|
|9||Elia Viviani (Ita) Cannondale||0:00:31|
|10||Russell Downing (GBr) NFTO|
|11||Martin Kohler (Sui) BMC Racing Team|
|12||Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN-Qhubeka p.b Samsung|
|13||Nick Van Der (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team|
|14||Jerome Baugnies (Bel) Wanty-Group Gobert|
|15||Kristian House (GBr) Rapha Condor JLT|
|16||Tijmen Eising (Ned) Metec - TKH Contintental|
|17||Jack Wilson (Irl) An Post Chain Reaction||0:00:32|
|18||Dennis Bakker (Ned) Metec - TKH Contintental|
|19||Steve Lampier (GBr) Velosure-Giordana Racing|
|20||Gregor Muhlberger (Aut) Team NetApp - Endura|
|21||Markus Eibegger (Aut) Synergy Baku|
|22||Nathan Earle (Aus) Team Sky|
|23||Iker Camano (Esp) Team NetApp - Endura|
|24||Clement Saint Martin (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille 13|
|25||Thomas Damuseau (Fra) Team Giant-Shimano||0:00:33|
|26||Matthieu Boulo (Fra) Team Raleigh|
|27||Edward Theuns (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise|
|28||Mike Northey (NZl) Madison Genesis|
|29||Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post Chain Reaction|
|30||Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky||0:00:34|
|31||Christian Meier (Can) Orica GreenEdge|
|32||Marco Minnaard (Ned) Wanty-Group Gobert||0:00:35|
|33||Michel Kreder (Ned) Wanty-Group Gobert|
|34||Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise|
|35||Scott Thwaites (GBr) Team NetApp - Endura||0:00:36|
|36||Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team||0:00:37|
|37||Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team||0:00:43|
|38||Arthur Vanoverberghe (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise||0:00:47|
|39||James Lowsley-Williams (GBr) NFTO|
|40||Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis||0:00:48|
|41||Paolo Longo Borghini (Ita) Cannondale||0:00:51|
|42||Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale|
|43||Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Cannondale||0:00:52|
|44||Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica GreenEdge||0:01:44|
|45||Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step||0:06:25|
|46||Brian Van Goethem (Ned) Metec - TKH Contintental||0:06:26|
|47||Jan Sokol (Aut) Synergy Baku|
|48||Daan Olivier (Ned) Team Giant-Shimano|
|49||Michael Van Staeyen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise|
|50||Benjamin Giraud (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille 13||0:06:27|
|51||Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step|
|52||Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale|
|53||Frederik Backaert (Bel) Wanty-Group Gobert|
|54||Sebastian Lander (Den) BMC Racing Team|
|55||Simon Yates (GBr) Orica GreenEdge||0:06:28|
|56||Tom Scully (NZl) Madison Genesis|
|57||Mark Renshaw (Aus) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step|
|58||Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step|
|59||Dale Appleby (GBr) NFTO|
|60||Stijn Steels (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise||0:06:29|
|61||Francis De Greef (Bel) Wanty-Group Gobert|
|62||Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica GreenEdge|
|63||Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky|
|64||Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Team NetApp - Endura||0:06:30|
|65||Mark McNally (GBr) An Post Chain Reaction|
|66||Ian Stannard (GBr) Team Sky|
|67||Richard Handley (GBr) Rapha Condor JLT||0:08:35|
|68||Christopher Opie (GBr) Rapha Condor JLT||0:11:37|
|69||Yanto Barker (GBr) Team Raleigh|
|70||Hugh Wilson (GBr) NFTO||0:11:38|
|71||Daniel Westmattelmann (Ger) Team Kuota|
|72||Aaron Gate (NZl) An Post Chain Reaction|
|73||Alex Peters (GBr) Madison Genesis|
|74||Thomas Rostollan (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille 13|
|75||Josh Hunt (GBr) NFTO||0:11:39|
|76||Jonas Ahlstrand (Swe) Team Giant-Shimano|
|77||Morgan Kneisky (Fra) Team Raleigh||0:11:40|
|78||Edward Fabian Diaz Cardenas (Col) Colombia||0:11:42|
|79||Tim Vanspeybroeck (Bel) Team 3M||0:11:44|
|80||Sander Helven (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise||0:11:45|
|81||Thomas Moses (GBr) Rapha Condor JLT|
|82||Andrew Fenn (GBr) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step|
|83||Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team|
|84||Mitch Docker (Aus) Orica GreenEdge||0:15:40|
|85||George Harper (GBr) Velosure-Giordana Racing|
|86||Youcef Reguigui (Alg) MTN-Qhubeka p.b Samsung||0:19:33|
|87||Songezo Jim (Rsa) MTN-Qhubeka p.b Samsung|
|88||Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille 13||0:21:28|
|89||Evaldus Siskevicius (Ltu) Team La Pomme Marseille 13|
|90||Jerome Gilbert (Bel) Wanty-Group Gobert|
|91||Christopher Latham (GBr) Great Britain Cycling Team|
|92||Oliver Wood (GBr) Great Britain Cycling Team|
|93||Christopher Lawless (GBr) Great Britain Cycling Team|
|94||George Atkins (GBr) Team Raleigh|
|95||Brad Morgan (GBr) Velosure-Giordana Racing||0:21:29|
|96||Lucas Carstensen (Ger) Bike Aid - Ride for help|
|97||Adrien Niyonshuti (Rwa) MTN-Qhubeka p.b Samsung|
|98||Tom Peterson (Usa) Team Giant-Shimano|
|99||Nicolas Dougall (Rsa) MTN-Qhubeka p.b Samsung|
|100||Remco Te Brake (Ned) Metec - TKH Contintental|
|101||Jelle Wolsink (Ned) Metec - TKH Contintental|