CYCLING: Grantham’s Rod takes the heat after Worlds flop

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Witham Wheelers honourary life member Rod Ellingworth found himself at the centre of media attention this week following Great Britain’s disappointing performance at the World Road Race Championships in Florence on Sunday.

Great Britain team manager Rod’s riders all retired before the end of the rain-affected 272.5km epic, which went on for 7.5 hours and saw just 48 riders finish from a field of 208.

This year’s Tour de France winner Chris Froome had been Great Britain’s hope for victory but the conditions got the better of him, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish, as well as his five other team-mates.

Speaking to BBC TV after the race, Rod said there were no excuses: “The lads are all disappointed in themselves and they are right to be disappointed. Each and every one of them under-performed.

“The lads have got to look at themselves.They’re all full-time bike riders and if we’re talking about going forward, talking about Rio 2016, this was a very disappointing result.”

l Frieston international cyclist Katie Colclough announced her retirement from professional racing at the age of 23 following the Women’s World Road Race Championship at Florence on Saturday.

Former Grantham College student Katie rode for Great Britain on Saturday, after winning gold in the team time trial with her US-based team Specialized-lululemon last week. Speaking on her decision to retire, Katie said: “It is time to try something new and different. I’m not sure what I’ll do.”