Adam Tranter/Fusion-Media.co.uk reports: There’s one thing in cycling that I feel will keep our sport growing to new levels. That’s youth development.

The Revolution organisers and supporter DHL / Exel supply chain seem to agree with me. The Revolution Future Stars was back at Revolution 18 with over 60 young riders taking part and just a few months earlier, some of the riders were being taught new skills by world champions through DHL’s support of the Sprint School initiative.

The DHL Future Stars Girls 1 Mile Dash was the next Future Stars event on the programme; it was a South West Region 1-2 with Ella Hopkins punching the air in style ahead of Dani King. Hannah Manley (Wales) and Corrine Hall (South East Region) maintained high positions in the sprint in order to stay competitive in the overall standings.

Corrine Hall maintained her composure and stayed up in the results with second place for the DHL Future Stars Girls 5km Scratch, with her previous rivals Hannah Manley and Ella Hopkins slipping down the results. But it was Harriet Owen from Central Division who took the glory.

Manxman Chris Whorral used his fluent style and fast-twitch fibres to overcome Jordan Hargreaves in a furious sprint for the DHL Future Stars Boys 1 Mile Dash. Sam Harrison and Dan McLay followed in for 3rd and 4th respectively.

The DHL Future Stars Girls Devil saw last season’s overall winner, Alex Greenfield use her tactical initiative to make sure she was there at the end to make use of her excellent sprint. Greenfield, a regular at Wales’ Newport Velodrome struggled in the earlier events so a win in the devil, ahead of Hannah Rich and Corrine Hall would have come as a confidence boost and given her a shot of the overall leader board.

It was then the turn for the boys to race in the longest race of their evening, the DHL Future Stars 5km Scratch. The same names were dominant throughout the race, and ultimately at the end of it too. Chris Whorral forced a photo finish, but took the lead ahead of Dan McLay and George Atkins. The three look set for an ongoing battle in the overall leadership.

Dan McLay (174 points) leads overall over Tom Gosbee (156 points) of Eastern Region, who seemed to be having an off day at Revolution 18 and struggled to get into the right positions. Tom Wieskowski and Chris Whorral are equal on 147 points over Jordan Hargreaves (134 points) and Sam Harrison of Wales (130 points).

Corrine Hall’s (163 points) consistency paid off as she takes a 3-point lead over Hannah Manley (160 points) from Wales. There’s a larger gap between 2nd and 3rd places with Katie Fearnehough at 146 points. Laura Trott slips down the rankings because of her participation in the Revolution Sprint.

The Future Stars project has been made a success by Face Partnership and DHL / Exel Supply Chain. But DHL’s support of youth initiative stretches much further than the Revolution series. The DHL Sprint School (www.sprintschool.com) ran over five dates during the summer at Newport velodrome. The scheme, a brain wave from DHL CEO and keen cyclist, Guy Elliott aimed to use world-class coaching in a controlled environment to help youngsters who were overlooked, or had been unable to make it onto the British Cycling Talent Team. The riders have been given support and advice from world champions such as Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Craig Maclean, Jamie Staff and Anna Blyth.

John Cooper (Wolverhampton Wheelers) is one of the youth riders who was invited to the DHL Sprint School initiative, a testament to the success of the scheme, Cooper made the transition and was invited to ride the Revolution Future Stars. A dream shared by most of the riders at Sprint School, but made a reality by the excellent level of guidance and facilities that were available.

When asked how the sprint school had helped him, John Cooper was full of praise for the DHL scheme. “The sprint school has given me the tactical awareness I didn’t used to have, I used to attack wherever possible, but I now use that tactics suggested by Craig at the last sprint school I did. 6 months ago, I wouldn’t have been able to stay in a top-class bunch like on Saturday. A lot of people have the fitness, but being able to be competitive requires a lot of different skills which I owe to Sprint School.”

Making the transition from training to racing is often daunting for even the best of riders, but through the Sprint School’s Future Revolution, riders were given the opportunity to practise their skills in a competitive environment. When it came to Revolution 18, riders are able to step up to the amazing atmosphere.

“The atmosphere was great, having the huge crowds, with the stands full, and people standing on the bends. It was an amazing experience and when the races were coming to the end, it was so loud!”

Next event

Tickets for the next Revolution on January 12th are on sale at www.cyclingrevolution.com or by calling 0845 686 0105 or 0161 223 2244 and tickets will be on sale on the door.