Downing has eye on city race

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DEAN Downing would love the chance to take on brother Russell over the streets of Sheffield city centre.

The Rapha Condor Sharp rider, who celebrated his 37th birthday yesterday, says his season highlight would be beating Downing junior in a ‘criterium’ race around Sheffield. Although no date has been officially confirmed for the race, The Star understands that the city will be part of British Cycling’s criterium series, which Downing won last year, this summer.

The Sunnyside, Rotherham, based Downing said: “It’s a race that I’ll have circled, starred, underlined everything on my calendar.

“Growing up in the area around the likes of Chris Walker and Malcolm Elliott it would mean a lot to me to be able to race Russ in Sheffield.

“It depends what kind of schedule he has but I’d definitely fancy my chances!”

Downing has just returned from a training camp in Lanzarote after recovering from a broken collar-bone.

He said: “There were eight of us and six were under 21. I really enjoyed passing on what I know as a mentor.”