Irish champ Marc Potts gets star billing with Froome, Aru, Landa in Astana

Posted on: August 12th, 2017

Marc Potts

Marc Potts getting the VIP treatment at the Astana Pro Crit with Chris Froome, Fabio Aru and Mikel Landa. Potts took the Irish criterium title last month. He was part of an Irish team invited to the major pro crit featuring all the Tour de France stars.

 

Marc Potts gets star billing with Froome, Aru, Landa

 

Marc Potts was give star billing at the Astana EXPO 2017 International Criterium alongside Chris Froome, Fabio Aru, Mikel Landa and eventual winner Ed Clancy.

Potts recently won the National Criterium Championships. And he had his new champion’s kit ready for the race in Kazakh capital Astana early today.

The race is effectively a post Tour de France criterium, with Chris Froome riding today in his yellow jersey.

Marc Potts was among a very exclusive group of riders brought forward for something of a VIP presentation to the crowd and media before the race.

The Irish champion rode the race on a national team with Irish track specialists Fintan Ryan and Felix English, as well as top road man Chris McGlinchey.

 

 

Despite plenty of attacking, it came down to a big bunch sprint. Ed Clancy (JLT Condor) claimed victory on the anniversary of his team pursuit, world record, gold medal ride at the Rio Olympics.

Clancy was victorious today from Italian Nicolas Marini (Nippo-Vini Fantini). Australian Scott Sunderland (IsoWhey Sports SwissWellness) as 3rd.

Marc Potts was best of the Irish, taking a more than respectable 17th place. McGlinchey was next of the Irish, in 30th.

Chris McGlinchey was just one spot behind Aru and two behind Froome. The race consisted of 31 laps of all-out racing on the 1.6km city streets course.

In the early part of the race McGlinchey was often to the fore. And although Froome got clear alone mid way through, he was quickly brought back.

Marc Potts was among a group of 10 riders that opened a sizeable gap as the race approached 45 minutes.

But with a first prize of $15,000 up for grabs, the field was letting nothing away. And it eventually came down to a bunch sprint.

All four Irishmen were in that bunch, with Ryan and English 54th and 61st. And as Potts placed 17th he was just inside the prizes totalling $50,000.

Interviews to come with top Irish riders

We’ll have a chat with Marc Potts in the next few days on his excellent run of form. His crit title win was just one of his many impressive rides of late for the Neon Velo man.

And we’ll also catch up with Fintan Ryan and Felix English in coming days. The speedster duo have been making a big impression on the international track scene of late.

They are riding under their own TrackProject.ie team livery when competing abroad on the track.

 

Marc Potts

The Astana crit was a mix of top pro teams and national squads.

Marc Potts

Fabio Aru in action

Marc Potts

Ed Clancy on the podium.

 

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