Oliveira misses out on top honours
Matthew Oliveira finished third in the Tour of Americas Dairylands — a series of five criterium races in Wisconsin — after a nasty crash scuppered his chances of the overall title.
Oliveira was leading the standings going into the final race at the weekend but was unable to add to his points tally after he was involved in an accident with several other riders.
The 18-year-old achieved his first win in the United States in the second of the five races, which were held in different Wisconsin cities over the course of a week.
He placed third in the opening race, came fifth in the third and second in the fourth.
“Last week’s racing was an awesome experience and a great opportunity to work on my bike skills and sprint work during the 45-minute races,” said Oliveira, who recently graduated from Warwick Academy.
“The second day was my first win and I was extremely delighted ... I screamed after crossing the finish line.
“On the final day I was still in the overall lead, with just one point separating me from the second-place rider. My job was to beat him and I would win the whole series. The race was super fast and technical, and coming into the final corner I was caught behind a scary crash at 35 mph.
“I hit the deck while my opponent missed the crash. I finished at the back of the pack with zero points but still managed third overall.”
Oliveira will now turn his attentions to the Junior Tour of Ireland from July 10 to 16.
“[The Tour of Americas Dairylands] was great training leading up to my biggest event of the year — the Junior Tour of Ireland,” he said.
“Luckily my injuries were not bad. I got away with a gash in my elbow and road rash on my leg, hip, arm and hand.”
Oliveira was first invited to ride for Hot Tubes after winning a gold medal in the time-trial and bronze in the road race at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Nassau, Bahamas, last summer.
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