Swift produces podium finish in Italy

Anston’s Ben Swift produced one of the rides of his career when he finished on the podium at Milan-San Remo this week.

The Team Sky cyclist was third after a bitterly cold and wet 294km race.

The 26-year-old said it was a dream result, in a race well suited to his abilities.

He told TeamSky.com: “It’s the race that I’ve looked at in the past and dreamed about over the years.”

“It’s the one big race where I could see myself getting a result because normally that sort of terrain is where I’d have pretty good legs.”

He admitted conditions made it a tough day, albeit with a worthwhile ending.

The former St Joseph’s pupil added: “My hands were so cold. I was struggling to do anything with my fingers. I never felt bad in the race I was just cold. As it went on I just felt better and better.”

“Then once we took the rain capes off and the racing really started I felt a lot better.”

Sky’s Sports Director Dario Cioni was delighted with Swift’s podium place, and insisted it was a just reward for his efforts in training.

He said: “Everyone is really happy for Ben as he has been working really hard over the winter.”

“He really deserved this result.”

“If you look at who he finished ahead of – he saw off some amazing sprinters.”

“The result should give him confidence and he really deserves it.”