Top European and United States cyclists lined up for the start of one of Britain's major cycling event, the annual 1,100 mile Milk Race.
GV PAN Brighton Promenade with team vans parked at side
SV Netherlands team preparing for race
CU Roy Schuitan (Netherlands)
SV U.S. Team
CU U.S. Doctor massaging leg
SV West German team
CU Klaus Peter Thaylor
CU PAN Ryszard Szurkowski (Poland) rides off
Tracking shots riders start off
Tracking shots riders along Promenade (2 shots)
Tracking shot past crowd
SV PAN Riders along country road to sign "Midhurst and Chichester"
GV Finish line
SV Spectators at finish
GV Winner (No. 62) and following Three cross finish
GV Packed field come into finish
SV Mayor presenting winner with laurels and certificate
CU Winner being congratulated
Initials AE/2.41 AE/3.00
SPORT - CYCLING
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Top European and United States cyclists lined up for the start of one of Britain's major cycling event, the annual 1,100 mile Milk Race. Despite the innocuous title -- it's sponsored by Britain's milk marketers -- experts were forecasting that this year's race would be the "most vicious" ever.
This is because the prizes are worth more, and the daily stages have been shortened and are likely to be contested at much higher speeds.
Before the race, there had been hopes of a British success this year to break seven years of failure in this race. The top British team includes three winners of gold medals at the Commonwealth Games earlier this year.
But they face stiff competition. Holland, West Germany, Sweden and Poland have al sent strong squads. Earlier, there had been fears that the Polish team -- headed by Olympic and World Champion Ryszard Szurkowski -- might have difficulty making the journey because of a visa mix-up.
But this had no effect on the first days' racing, over a 105-mile stage from Brighton, on England's south coast. Poland's Andrzej Kaczmarek was the winner of this first stage, with Bernt Johannson of Sweden second nd Dutchman Aad van den Hoek third.