James Lowsley-Williams finished fourth in front of his home crowd as Madison Genesis’ Connor Swift won round six of the Tour Series in Bath.
The Cotswolds ace launched an early attack before spending much of the first half of the race up the road alone. But a memorable solo triumph was not forthcoming.
Swift made his decisive move with around 10 minutes of the race remaining and was well clear when a crash at the start of the penultimate lap put the chase group in trouble.
Tom Stewart, of ONE Pro Cycling, had already escaped their clutches and pressed on for second with Bertie Newey, from Metaltek Kuota, grabbing the bunch sprint for third.
Rory Townsend finished 12th but it was Madison who were firmly on top, as they clinched the team prize and wrestled the leaders’ jerseys from JLT Condor at the head of the series standings.
BIKE Channel Canyon were the fourth team on the night and have slipped to fourth position in the standings ahead of round seven of 10 in Motherwell on Tuesday (7.30pm).
Once again there were a couple of heavy downpours before racing and the rain was still falling when the peloton rolled out.
Croydon winner Graham Briggs, of JLT Condor, hit the front almost immediately before there was heartbreak for Matt Nowell when a crash on the opening lap put paid to his hopes.
The Cotswolds’ own Lowsley-Williams then took his chance to go on the attack on home roads. He quickly gained a handful of seconds and, with the hammer down in slippery conditions, the race soon began breaking up.
Chris Opie and Townsend were tucked in the front group, while Sam Lowe was working hard to tag back on in a small bunch of chasers.
Only Madison Genesis survived the early skirmishes with all five riders in the main group, in pursuit of the typically-aggressive Lowsley-Williams, who scooped the opening Wiggle sprint.
Soon every team had lost firepower as the front bunch continued to fragment, with Opie among those to slip back. However, the Cornishman quickly rejoined, clocking a Brother UK fastest lap in the process.