Thunder and lightning added to the excitement of the school-cycling races as thousands of people prepared to line the streets of Croydon for a night of professional road-racing on Tuesday, June 7.
The penultimate round of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series was on a new course for this year's event as some of Britain's leading cyclists hurtled around some of the town's best known landmarks.
White Label Creative was delighted to take responsibility for event management and communications as the race made a successful return to the town.
After a thrilling men's race in which the lead changed several times, Jon Mould claimed a sixth race victory of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series and Croydon Council leader Tony Newman presented him with a limited edition print from local artist Gavin Kinch, to remember Croydon.
- Vintage Croydon: Jon Mould receives his specially commissioned print from council leader Tony Newman after winning the Croydon stage of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series. Photo by Chris Gray
Jon said: "I just got stuck into the bike race and you take your opportunities when they come along. With five laps to go you forget about your legs and you just want to get home first.
"It was a tough circuit but coming under the flyover right near the finish I think it was good to watch. You could see us coming through that bottom corner and through the finish so it was a good circuit.
"I like the new course. I think I can adapt to it quicker than a few others. You would have thought this was going to be flat but it was draggy everywhere."
Madison Genesis took the team honours to close the gap on JLT Condor going into the final round in Portsmouth.
- Grace Garner of Podium Ambition celebrates her win in the women's race with Mayor of Croydon Wayne Trakas-Lawlor. Photo by Chris Gray
Meanwhile, Grace Garner of Podium Ambition won the Matrix Grand Prix women's race with Drops Cycling Team taking the team honours.
Luckily for the professionals and the crowds, the weather improved during the day after a deluge which caused severe flooding in various parts of the borough and brought a premature halt to a series of Croydon's schoolchildren races, although all of the youngsters from the eight participating schools got to take to the track.
They were followed by Wheels for Wellbeing who defied the wet conditions to provide an opportunity for disabled cyclists to ride and race on the course's start/finish straight.
The rain also didn't prevent a host of local riders from raising funds for Croydon Commitment with a special relay race which was won by Metropolitan Police ahead of the London Underground Cycling Club and Old Portlians Cycling Club.
A special mention should go to the two-man Develop Croydon team who put up a great fight despite each having to ride three times further than their rivals.
Meanwhile, there was a serious message on the day with a Transport for London stand aiming to encourage more people to cycle and Keltbray offering cyclists a view of what truck drivers can see from their cabs.
Cllr Godfrey tweeted: "The Croydon leg of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series gets better every year. The crowd was great and numbers were easily twice that of last year. A great success."
White Label Creative carried out event management and communications for the event on behalf of the London Borough of Croydon.
- Riders on the starting line for the men's race. Photo by Chris Gray
- The men are roared on by the crowd in the home straight in the Pearl Izumi Tour Series race in Croydon. Photo by Chris Gray
- Tom Stewart leads the way in Croydon for the Madison Genesis team on the way to their second victory of the season. Photo by Chris Gray
- JLT Condor, leaders of the men's series after nine rounds. Photo by Chris Gray
- Women's series and sprints leader Nikki Juniper with Councillor Mark Watson
- Drops Cycling Team, team winners in the women's race, with Deputy Mayor of Croydon Councillor Toni Letts. Photo by Chris Gray
- Riders taking part in the Wheels for Wellbeing race organised ahead of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series in Croydon
- Children at the start line for one of the schools' races. Photo by Chris Gray
- The Croydon Partnership team face in the camera after the Croydon Commitment charity race. Photo by Chris Gray
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