CONNOR Swift’s name is far better known now than it was 12 months ago.

That’s not to say he wasn’t marked out for success beforehand, but winning the British Road National Championships in 2018 certainly elevated his status.

That victory came last July in Stamfordham, Northumberland, when he soloed to the finish for his biggest career win to date.

He is heading back North this week for the Tour de Yorkshire where he will represent Madison Genesis for a race that is also scheduled to feature the likes of four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome.

“(The past year) has been pretty surreal,” said Swift. “Obviously, winning the title raised my profile as a rider quite a lot and people definitely know who I am now. I went on to join Dimension Data (as a stagiaire), which was pretty crazy and I really enjoyed my time there. Towards the back end of the season I went to the World Championships as well, which was something I never really thought I would be able to do at the beginning of last year.”

Recently, he finished third at the East Cleveland Klondike Grand Prix, a disappointing result in his eyes and the Yorkshireman is keen to bounce back in style when top class racing comes home later this week.

The race covers the whole of Yorkshire, with North Yorkshire featuring heavily – Selby hosting the finish on Thursday, May 2, Bedale hosting the men and women’s finishes on May 3 and Scarborough the finish point for male and female riders on May 4.

“Teamwise, we definitely want to produce a result on General Classification, so if one of the other lads is up there I will definitely be there to try and help them out to go for it. I got sixth on a stage last year so I would definitely like to improve on that. We will just have to see how it pans out,” he said. “It’s two days of sprinters’ days and stages three and four are more GC types of day, especially stage three which is sharp and punchy, so I reckon it is going to be a really good race and I am looking forward to it.”