Russell delivers

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Russell Downing played a key role in sprint sensation Mark Cavendish winning the Olympic cycling test event in London yesterday.

As part of the British team, Downing, from Rotherham, paced Cavendish through to 1km from the finish before the Manxman delivered his customary burst of speed to win the London-Surrey Cycle Classic .

Downing said: “It was a mega race. The atmosphere was incredible, you could get a real sense of what it will be like at the Olympics. No part of the course didn’t have people cheering us on.

“My job was to lead the team between 2km from the end to 1km. Cav was one of the favourites to take the race, so I did my job.”