SOUTH Devon rider Jonathan Tiernan-Locke finished just five seconds behind winner Philippe Gilbert in yesterday's cycling world championship road race.
While Gilbert celebrated his win in Holland, Tiernan-Locke could be delighted with a performance that cemented his place as the rising star of British cycling.
The 28-year-old member of the Newton Abbot-based Mid Devon Cycling Clubwon the Tour of Britain last week, and was given the role of lead rider on his first call-up to the GB team yesterday.
Reigning World Champion Mark Cavendish, who surrendered his rainbow jersey to Gilbert yesterday, Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins and Olympic medallist Chris Froome all took turns to ride in support of Tiernan-Locke yesterday.
On the penultimate climb of the Cauberg hill on the Limburg course, national champion Ian Stannard led the elite group including Tiernan-Locke over the top.
The final 16-kilometre lap saw all the front runners jockeying for position, and Gilbert burst clear up the Cauberg for the final time to win by four seconds from Edvald Boasson Hagen of Norway.
Spain’s Alejandro Valverde was third across the line, with the bunch containing Tiernan-Locke just a second further back.
Cavendish, Wiggins and Froome had all dropped out of the race before the final stages.