Canyon Eisberg are celebrating their maiden Tour Series title.
Tim Elverson’s squad clinched the crown with a brilliant performance in the grand final in Salisbury on Thursday night.
Chris Opie, Harry Tanfield, James Lowsley-Williams, Andrew Tennant and Charles Page sprinted to team victory in a thrilling last round of the crit championship.
And with it, they held off the challenge of title rivals Madison Genesis to top the overall standings.
That meant the bubbles flowed on the podium at the climax of one of the closest battles in the 10-year history of the Tour Series.
The decisive finale to the competition was not without incident, though, as an early crash threatened to derail the team’s ambitions.
However, the riders refocused superbly to crucially place four men inside the top 11 and bag the team win.
They were led home by Opie, fresh from announcing his retirement, who sprinted to third behind race winner Ed Clancy, of JLT Condor.
Canyon Eisberg had started in style, drilling out a fierce pace on the fast course around Salisbury’s Market Square.
Splits quickly appeared in the bunch and a group of 10 then powered away, driven by Tanfield, Tennant, Lowsley-Williams and Page.
Crucially, George Pym and then Johnny McEvoy were dropped, leaving Madison playing catch-up.
And they were in even more trouble when Tobyn Horton was the next to be distanced by the leading group, along with Richardsons-Trek’s George Wood and Morvelo Basso’s Stephen Bradbury.
But then disaster struck as Lowsley-Williams hit the deck on a right-hander and brought down Tennant and Page, with the latter left requiring a bike change.
Madison’s Neil van der Ploeg was also involved, while his team-mate Connor Swift and Harry Tanfield were in front of the crash.
Team Wiggins’ Tom Pidcock and Clancy did brilliantly to swerve the pile-up and alongside Tanfield and Swift they pressed on.
Page, following a quick stop in the pits, was soon back with Opie in the bunch, which had regrouped after the early pace had eased slightly.
Tennant and Lowsley-Williams were in the gap with van der Ploeg but there was little cohesion in the two front groups with Canyon Eisberg expected to do all the work.
Lap by lap their advantage over the peloton was eroded. And shortly after the chase group were caught, van der Ploeg attacked.
Lowsley-Williams chased hard to prevent the Aussie giving Madison the upper hand in the fight for the overall crown.
They were eventually brought back and the peloton reeled in the four leaders as the race roared into its final five laps.
With five riders in the bunch compared to a Madison quartet, Canyon Eisberg still had control of the race.
However, they needed to finish powerfully. And they did just that with Tanfield leading Opie out for third before rolling over the line in fourth.
McEvoy and Horton followed them home in fifth and sixth, while Tennant placed seventh in the sprint in front of the Salisbury Guildhall.
With Swift 10th, the team prize and the overall title would be decided by the next rider home from the rival squads.
And that was Lowsley-Williams, who finished 11th, as Page held van der Ploeg up for 17th and 18th respectively.
That result gave Canyon Eisberg a cumulative time of 4hr 33min 24.499sec and a 4.728sec success over Madison.
So after three weeks and 10 thrilling rounds of the 2018 Tour Series, the overall crown was won by less than five seconds.
It was a maiden title for Canyon Eisberg and also sports director Elverson, who first cut his teeth against the country’s top teams in the championship with Pedal Heaven.
Meanwhile, Tanfield finished just one point behind Eisberg sprint jersey champion Matt Gibson, of JLT.
Canyon Eisberg completed the series with four round wins, including the team time trial in Stevenage. In the other six rounds, they finished second twice and third four times.
Tanfield clinched two individual successes, while Jack Pullar (hill climb) and Tennant were each victorious in Durham.
The squad also added four Brother fastest laps, courtesy of Opie (Redditch), Tennant (Durham), Tanfield (Aberystwyth) and Page (Stevenage).
Alex Paton and Charlie Tanfield were also influential members of the eight-strong squad Elverson used across the three weeks of racing.