Bolton Equities Black Spoke completely dominated the Prologue of the ΔΕΗ Tour of Hellas, with three members of the team finishing in the top three positions!
An amazing start for the team from New Zealand, but for the defending champion Aaron Gate as well, who claimed the overall leader's blue jersey.
The second jersey that was awarded at the Prologue, the white one for the best U23 rider, was also captured by a Bolton Equities Black Spoke member; 21-year-old Logan Curry.
Cypriot Andreas Miltiadis, made a fantastic effort which brought him in fourth place, while Polychronis Tzortzakis finished 24th and first amongst the Greek riders.
The start and finish of the Prologue took place at the state-of-the-art facilities of the Karteros Beach Sports Center, just a few kilometres far from the city centre of Heraklion.
Caja Rural's Jefferson Cepeda was the first to start and held the lead until ATT Investments' Jakub Otruba took over.
The Czech rider's lead came to an end when Irish road champion Rory Townsend of Bolton Equities Black Spoke beat Otruba's time by 5.82 seconds.
The Greek crowd went into ruptures when they saw Andreas Miltiadis set the second fastest time, 5.22 behind Townsend. The Cypriot champion held on to the top three, but the clock had not yet started for Bolton Equities Black Spoke's Logan Carey and Aaron Gate.
The team from New Zealand is well known for having in his ranks great individual time trialist, therefore everyone was expecting a thrilling Prologue finale that it would be come down to the wire.
Curry's effort was enough to move him up into second place behind Townsend, but Gate, last year's winner, had still to come out.
New Zealand’s champion pushed from the start and clocked 7:30.37, the best time of the Prologue. A dream day for Bolton Equities Black Spoke which saw three of their riders stepping on the podium.
“To win it here with the No 1 on my back is pretty special. I did say to our director that we could put four riders in the top ten, because we came here with a fast team. We did that but I wasn’t expecting 1-2-3. We exceeded our expectations, so the form of the team is good.
“Now we can start to make a plan for the rest of the race. Of course, it’s a little bit different this year to last year but it’s still suits as well.
“They are not going to be looking for one rider from the team because we have 1-2-3 in the GCC”, said Aaron Gate, while Rory Townsend added: “I knew with Aaron and the guys doing so well here last year, we’d likely be up there towards the front.
“Now we will try to look after our lead and it’s great having options as well. The GCC is our main ambition here”.
U23 riders’ leader Logan Curry explained what comes next for the team: “I'm very proud. We will talk about our roles tonight. I would love to hold on the white jersey and help Aaron who will be the leader of our team”.
Stage 1 of the ΔΕΗ Cycling Tour of Hellas comes up next on Wednesday, May 3. The pre-start will be given at the Karteros Sports Center at 11 am and the stage will finish at the Port of Heraklion.