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Tom Pidcock: It was everyone against Ineos Grenadiers at Tour of Britain

Picture by Alex WhiteheadSWpixcom 07092022 Cycling 2022 AJ Bell Tour of Britain Stage 4 Redcar to Duncombe Park Helmsby England Tom Pidcock of Team INEOS grenadier
(Image credit: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)

Tom Pidcock was left disappointed after being narrowly outsprinted by Movistar rider Gonzalo Serrano on stage 4 of the 2022 Tour of Britain after a four-man breakaway.

“It would have been nice to win today, but I wasn’t fast enough in the sprint,” the Ineos Grenadiers rider told L’Équipe TV at the finish. “But we took the race on, we were aggressive. I think everyone was waiting for us to do something. I think that’s the story of this race.” In another interview, he said, “it seems to be everyone against Ineos Grenadiers.”

Magnus Sheffield was in an early breakaway and Andrey Amador’s pacing paved the way for Tom Pidcock to split up the race. While he was part of a three-rider move over Carlton Bank, with 30km to go, that didn’t stick, Pidcock forced the key breakaway over the day’s final climb of Newgate Bank, with Serrano, teammate Omar Fraile and Dylan Teuns (Israel-Premier Tech).

Pidcock now sits second overall at seven seconds behind Serrano, with teammate Omar Fraile in third on the same time.

“It’s going to be difficult to win this race, because I don’t think we – or I – have the speed in the sprints to get the bonus seconds we need. But we’ll figure out how we can try and win.”

Speaking to other journalists later, Pidcock added: “We tried several times. We’re the home team, a bit of pressure and expectation is on us to make the race which makes it all that much harder to win. I think we did pretty well in those circumstances.”

The 149.5km fourth stage between Redcar and Duncombe Park, which took the bunch over the North Yorkshire Moors, was arguably the toughest of this year’s race. 

Asked how he found the course, Pidcock replied, “It’s not hard enough. We’re in England, it’s too easy. Today was relatively hard, but every day seems to be headwind finish. Maybe you can look at the prevailing wind but yeah, you can make a harder race in the UK. You don’t need all these sprint stages.”

Meanwhile, it was a surprise win for 28-year-old Serrano, who is bouncing back from a broken elbow sustained in the spring. “Today was a crazy and difficult day, very attacking,” the Spaniard said. “I had very good legs and it’s a very good win.”

He is aware of the fight he will have on his hands to defend his lead to the finish. 

“It’s not easy: Pidcock and Omar are very, very strong. I think Tour of Britain is a very important race for Ineos … we will do our maximum for the overall and, if possible, other stages.”

Israel-Premier Tech pose a threat too, with Teuns fifth overall and stage one winner Corbin Strong lurking in sixth at 14 seconds, with the potential to use his strong sprint to win bonus seconds.

“It was racing from the gun, it was a hard day,” Teuns told Cyclingnews after the finish. “But those two guys in the sprint were just faster.”

While the toughest terrain may be behind the Tour of Britain peloton, its rolling stages are ripe for ambush, whether that’s from Ineos Grenadiers, Israel-Premier Tech or even Uno-X Pro Cycling Team , who showed their fangs by provoking a split on Egton Bank with 75 kilometres to go.

“It’s not over yet, there’s still four days of racing,” Teuns said before rolling down to the team buses in Helmsley.

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