After hitting the cold, wet road on Stage 1 of the 2017 Mersey Valley Tour, High5 Dream Team rider Lucy Kennedy has bounced back in the best way possible, soloing to victory on Stage 2 by over 30 seconds.

Kennedy also took maximum points on the two Queen of the Mountains climbs on the stage, and will defend the QOM leader’s jersey with one stage remaining.

‘I had a really disappointing day yesterday, crashing on the time trial. I am no longer a threat on general classification, but I wanted to take out my frustration with a win. It is very satisfying to win today. It’s a really tough and honest course so to win means you’re in good form. The roads were extremely slippery so there were a lot of crashes on descents. Our main goal was to stay safe until the climb and we all stayed upright’

‘I wanted to win solo today. Yesterday was disappointing and frustrating because I know I’m fit, so I wanted to turn that all around today. The plan was to go hard up the Gunns Plains climb to get enough of an advantage to be able to stay away to the finish. Despite being sore this morning, my legs came good and I managed to pull it off.’

With her sights set firmly on the stage win, the addition of the polka dot jersey made for a pleasant surprise for Kennedy.

‘The QOM jersey wasn’t really the focus for today, it was all about the stage win. On the first climb, I mainly just wanted to test my own legs a bit to see how I’d pulled up from the crash yesterday. Of course, it would be nice to keep hold of the lead tomorrow – I do like those spotted jerseys’, concluded Kennedy.

The 2017 Mersey Valley Tour concludes on Sunday 14 may with a 76-kilometre road race in Railton.