The final event in the 2008/9 Future Stars series takes place at Revolution 24 on 21 February at the Manchester Velodrome. Ruby Miller has stolen the show in the girl’s competition and, barring accident or injury, looks sent to finish the season having led right from the start. Simon Yates now holds the jersey for the boys’, albeit with just a few points in hand over rival Chris Nicholson.
With all to play for, the final event looks set to be another fierce battle for the leader’s jersey and, with so few points seperating the top two in the team competition, the Welsh riders will be looking to pick up as many points as they can to try and knock the North West off the top spot.
Future Stars Manager Phil West commented: “I’m really looking forward to the final event. Ruby Miller of Wales looks to have the Overall sewn up for the girls with a handsome 34 point lead over nearest challenger Harriet Owen riding for Central. The pressure at the final event could be on Owen for her second place overall as Eastern region team mates Laura Trott and Hannah Walker, both within four points of Owen, look to push her off the podium in the final event of the series.”
Sam Harrison led the competition for the first two events. However, his decision not to ride at Revolution on 23 January has left the leader jersey up for grabs. Simon Yates used skill and technique to avoid the many crashes that took place at the last event and stormed into the lead in Sam’s absence. He now has some 15 points in hand going into the final event. His position is not assured and Simon has to work hard to ensure that neither his twin Adam nor Chris Nicholson can get an edge.
Phil continued: “Sam Harrison is not riding the final event so the Future Stars boys’ ‘overall’ looks like it will be an all-North West affair. Yates will only have to make one mistake and his team mate could steal the overall from under his nose. So far the North West have dominated the overall standings and currently have the top three boys overall and the team prize within their grasp, it will be interesting to see whether Wales, only five points behind, can steal their thunder while the North West team mates fight it out for the individual prize.”
The DHL Future Stars competition is very important in the youth calendar. For the talented youngsters it provides a fantastic opportunity to compete in front of a large home crowd. Steven Burke, winner of the 2005 Future Stars, credits the competition with enhancing his development and progression up the ranks.
Burke says: “Winning the Future Stars’ overall title in 2005 mainly made me a more confident rider, therefore helping me to achieve further success. It was an ideal stepping stone from Youth to Junior racing, providing great, exciting bike races.”
Tickets have now sold out however the event will be screened on both Channel 4 and Channel M. Got to www.cyclingrevolution.com for full details.