HomeNews & FeaturesRoad CyclingTour of Gippsland Stage 1 & 2 Review

Tour of Gippsland Stage 1 & 2 Review

Press Release: 143 riders are competing in the Tour of Gippsland, part of the Scody Cup and includes top names such as Leigh Howard, Jack Bobridge and Sean Finning.

Stage 1 – Traralgon to Boolarra    51.5 km

143 riders displaying an array of team colours lined up for stage one of the Lakes Oil Tour of Gippsland beginning in Traralgon this morning.

The impressive field, 70 percent up on last years event and the biggest in the Scody Cup to date, includes Australian cyclist of the Year, Leigh Howard along with Beijing Olympian Jack Bobridge, Commonwealth gold medallist Sean Finning and riders from over seas and interstate.

Riders travelling in a controlled group through the undulating Gippsland countryside, remaining tightly packed until the 20-kilometre mark when a local schoolboy officially started the race.

While the members of the pelaton took the opportunity to set the pace at around 60 kilometres an hour, further back, a group of riders fell in a spectacular incident resulting in Search2Retain rider Huge Singleton and Dixon Homes’ Peter Aquilina taking a trip to hospital with serious head and collarbone injuries. Huge Singleton was later airlifted to Melbourne for further treatment.

As the main pelaton splintered a lead group containing favourites Leigh Howard and Jack Bobridge formed, Howard held fast in the sprint leg to take the overall sprint leader jersey leaving Bobridge battling with a puncture 3 kilometres out from the finish.

Local rider Kane Walker (Team 2XU) claimed the Leaders Jersey when he crossed the line in 1hour 18 minutes, ahead of Tasmanian Tom Robinson (Lawson Homes) and Cody Stevenson (Team Budget Forklifts), Walker claiming the tour leader jersey for stage one.

Howard was presented with the Most Aggressive Rider title while Marc Williams (Suzuki-Canberra) from the ACT claimed the King of the Mountain Jersey.

Stage 2- Traralgon South to Yarram        57.7kms

After a brief stop for lunch, students from Traralgon South Primary School lined the streets to cheers the riders onto stage two and a quick two laps and sprint of the school in honour of the devastating fires that swept through the area earlier in the year. Jack Bobridge (Team Jayco AIS) led the sprint and the pelaton onto the picturesque but treacherous road through Tarra Bulga National Park.

Riders cautiously negotiated the wet down hill roads, crossing four plank bridges, flanked by towering Australian Gums, synonymous with the Gippsland region.

Stage one winner Kane Walker maintained his position in the chase group, aiming to close the 1minute 20 gap to the breakaway.

With the pelaton splintering early into the hill climb, Bobridge fell back into the chase group as Leigh Howard (Team Jayco AIS), Johnathan Lovelock (Jayco/VIS) and Adam Semple (Team Jayco AIS) lead a group of 8 riders to the front. The lead group maintaining a 2 minute charge up to the final 5 kilometres where Lovelock broke away.

Howard and Queenslander David Kemp (Fly V Australia)  took the challenge and sprinted to the finish line. Howard taking line honours with Kemp second followed by Timothy Roe (Savings and Loans).

Queenslander Hayden Brooks (Fly V Australia) was awarded the King of the Mountain jersey, Howard the Triple Crown, Jerseys for Tour Leader, Sprint and Young Rising Stars. Team mate Adam Semple bagging the Most Aggressive Rider Jersey.

Stage 3 begins at 11am tomorrow with a 30-lap criterium in Trafalgar followed by stage 4, a 75.3 kilometres road race from Trafalgar to the quaint mining town of Walhalla.

source: thetribe.com.au

Christopher Jones
Christopher Joneshttps://www.bicycles.net.au
Christopher Jones is a recreational cyclist and runs a design agency, Signale. As the driving force behind Bicycles.net.au he has one of each 'types' of bicycles.
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