Peloton Watch
  James Fouche wins New Zealand road national title  
  January 6th 2019  
  James Fouche celebrates winning the women's road race. Photo: John Cowpland  
  For the second day in a row an under 23 rider upstaged the elite field as James Fouche stormed to victory in the men's road race at the 2019 New Zealand Vantage Elite and Under-23 Road National Championships in Napier, Sunday January 6.

Fouche who claimed the under 23 time trial title on Friday animated the race from the start before really making his mark on the final three laps of the city circuit where he attacked and soloed away to the title in just over four hours for the 166 kilometre race.

"I thought the key for me was to get an early break because I am not one of the best on the climbs. It worked out really well although I was sceptical to go with three laps left but I just went with it," said Fouche who will return to Europe with season with Team Wiggins.

"I thought it would be a tester and I was surprised to open up the lead. I was not sure I could hold it. I've been doing quite a bit of training on the hills so I guess it paid off today and the race played into my hands."

Under 23 silver went to Kees Duyvesteyn who was also second across the line with Joel Yates completing the podium.

The elite title went to Tom Scully who was also part of the move than came on the rural laps.

"It was a long day out there but I was impressed that the group were motivated and all committed to the break and took it to the rest," said Scully. "I told them to work hard for 10 minutes to establish the break and from there it worked well.

"James was very impressive and it shows good signs for the future. It was incredible when James went on the climb and put the sword in. It was too much for me. He is an impressive, strong young rider."

Completing the elite podium was Patrick Bevin with silver and Hayden McCormick with bronze.

Results - Under 23  |  Elite
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