STOCKTON Wheeler Paul Curran, riding for England, came through the biggest test of his season so far in great style when he finished equal fifth overall after 260-miles of racing in the country's top cycling event of the long holiday weekend - the Girvan Pro/Am three-day stage race in Scotland.
Finishing 1min 3lsec.behind the overall winner, former world professional pursuit champion Tony Doyle, Curran was the leading Great Britain / England representative on overall general classification.
It was in the 98-mile longest stage of the race that the Stockton rider made sure of a place among the leaders by getting into a decisive break of 22 riders which finished a massive 16 minutes ahead of the rest of the field, effectively putting the remainder out of contention.
Curran's progress was not without its problems, suffering punctures on both the first and the last of the four stages, being forced to chase for over 25 miles to rejoin the field after puncturing during the tough final 75-mile stage which included six prime hills.
1. Tony Doyle
=5. Paul Curran (Stockton Wh)