World Champion to race the Archer

One of Britain's new track World Champions, Mark Cavendish, and pursuit teammate Ed Clancy (who did not ride in the final) will be riding in the 100-strong field at the Archer International GP at Hazlemere, in the Chiltern Hills (UK) on Sunday, April 3. It is considered a coup for the 50th Anniversary of the Archer GP, which is the first of three European Tour races in the UK. It also marks the first appearance on home soil of representatives of the all-conquering British team at the World Championships, which won four Golds, one Silver, and one Bronze medal.

Although 19-year old Cavendish and 20-year old Clancy are not expected to make a seamless transition between comparatively short distance track racing to the 116 mile Archer, the British coaching team appears confident that they can now build up to top placings in the World Road Championships later in the year in the under-23 category, effectively the previous amateur championships.

Although Cavendish is the first current British World Champion to ride in the Archer International GP event, other British riders have used it as a stepping stone to World Championship honours such as Hugh Porter and Chris Newton (another gold medallist in Los Angeles), while Regis Ovion (France) and Rykzard Surkowski (Poland) have been past or present world champions when riding the event some year back.

The field of 100 starts from Hazlemere, Bucks, at 11am and covers two circuits in the Chiltern hills, to finish at about 3.30pm in Winchmore Hill village, near Amersham.

In addition to the Great Britain and Welsh national teams, there are teams from Belgium, Holland and three from Ireland, plus all the top trade and club teams in Britain. Likely favourites will be Julian Winn (Wales) and John Tanner (Planet X) who were first and second last year, plus Malcolm Elliott (Pinarello Rt) winner of the Premier Series last year. Tanner is the leader of the 2005 Premier Series after the first event at Easter, the Girvan 3-day, in which he was second overall, but with more Premier points from the three stages.

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