On a very well prepared Sutton Coldfield course, resembling many in mainland Europe, the race had 22 starters. Getting away fastest was Gabby Day, who exited the road section first ahead of team-mate Wyman. Not happy in 2nd place, Helen moved quickly past Gabby and the Swift Racing pair headed clear of the rest of the field.
On Lap 2, Helen had a small technical problem, costing her the lead of the race, however after a swift change of bike Helen started to pursue Gabby. On lap 3, Helen launched what was to prove to be a definitive move on the road section. Over the final 2½ laps, Helen steadily moved away from Gabby to secure her 3rd title in a row.
Speaking after the race, Helen said, ‘ this win is as good as the first. I don’t think any pro ever gets tired of winning. In my new team colours, there is never a better way to start the year. It was also the hardest to win as I knew just how good Gabby has been in Europe this year. Anyone who can get in the top 10 of a World Cup (Gabby was 9th in Pijnacker this season) is always going to be a threat.’
In the large crowd at Sutton Park was the head of Swift Motorhomes (www.swiftleisure.com) who clearly enjoyed his first day with the team and was very pleased with the result. It was also the first day that the new Bio-Racer (www.bioracer.com) backed team have been able to show their 2008 colours.
The Swift Racing riders now move their focus to the World Championships at the end of January and have 2 World Cup events as preparation. The race calendar is available on www.teamswiftracing.com
Attached photos are with permission of Adam Tranter http://photography.fusion-media.co.uk/
FRANK UIJLENBROEK WORLDSPORTPICS