Ballarat City Council will host the Australian Open Road Cycling Championships for the next six years. The new agreement is between Council, Cycling Australia and the event promoter Caribou Publications.
Under the agreement the Australian Open Road Cycling Championships will, for the first time, combine all three national road disciplines – the time trial, road race and criterium as part of the Championship series.
The economic impact of the event is anticipated to be in excess of $4 million each year, representing an injection of approximately $24 million into the Ballarat economy over the life of the six year contract.
Ballarat Mayor Cr Judy Verlin said she was thrilled Ballarat had retained the nationally significant cycling event.
“Cycling Australia’s decision to keep the Australian Open Road Championships in Ballarat is further reinforcement of Ballarat’s capacity to host premier cycling events.
“Council has worked tremendously hard to cement its place as the home of Australian road cycling and I am delighted we will have the opportunity to continue to host the event and showcase our great city to the nation for the next six years.”
"The inclusion of the criterium is a huge coup for the city. The event now boasts all three road race disciplines giving spectators the chance to witness a diverse program of road cycling at an elite level."
Cycling Australia Chief Executive Officer Graham Fredericks said Cycling Australia was delighted to formalise the arrangement for the Australian Open Road Championships to have a home in Ballarat.
“The event has grown in stature and prestige over recent years and the feedback that we have had from our members has been very positive.
“We are also pleased to confirm the criterium will be added to the cycling festival in Ballarat where the road races and time trials have been staged so successfully. It should be a spectacular festival of cycling for fans and supporters who flock to Ballarat for the event.
“We look forward to working with both the Ballarat City Council and Caribou Publications over the next six years as the event continues to grow and develop.”
Championship event director John Craven from Caribou Publications said Ballarat’s retention of the titles for the next six years was an exciting and welcome development for the region and Australian cycling in general.
He said the expansion of the Championships into a nine-event format, would make Ballarat a mecca for the Australian bicycling fraternity in January each year.
“Ballarat is now synonymous with top-level bike racing and Ballarat City Council should be congratulated for securing a long-term arrangement for the Championships.”
The Australian Open Road Cycling Championships will be held in Ballarat from Wednesday 6 – Sunday 10 January 2010.
Wednesday, 6 Jan – Time Trial (Buninyong)
U23 Men’s Time Trial
Elite & U23 Women’s Time Trial
Elite Men’s Time Trial
Thursday, 7 Jan – National Criterium (Ballarat CBD)
U23 Men’s Criterium
Elite & U23 Women Criterium
Elite Men’s Criterium
Friday, 8 Jan – Rest Day
Saturday, 9 Jan – Road Race (Buninyong)
U23 Men’s Road Race
Elite & U23 Women’s Road Race
Sunday, 10 Jan – Road Race (Buninyong)
Elite Men’s Road Race