Aussie Nationals: Double for Orica-GreenEdge


It’s the time of year for the Australian National Road Race Championships and in the time trial, Luke Durbridge and Shara Gillow won for Orica GreenEdge

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Luke Durbridge Delivers Back to Back Wins in Ballarat

Luke Durbridge blasted around Ballarat to win gold in the individual time trial at the Mars Cycling Australia Road National Championships. The defending champion covered the 37 kilometre Lake Wendouree course in 43:26.71 to beat out Rohan Dennis (South Australia) for the title. Michael Matthews, in his first outing in ORICA-GreenEDGE colours, took the bronze medal.

“Winning the national title was definitely my main objective for January,” said Durbridge. “I worked hard over December to achieve that goal, and I’m happy to come out with the win.”

“It’s an honour to wear national colours,” Durbridge continued. “To have that honour last year and achieve it again this year is a huge thing for me. I take a lot of motivation from wearing the championship jersey. I’m glad to do it again this year. My 2013 season has started quite well.”

As defending champion, Durbridge recognized that anything less than the gold medal would be underwhelming.

“It was different this year to go into the race with the win as an expectation,” he said. “It’s a different sort of feeling when anything but the win would be a disappointment. I used that pressure to motivate and drive me when I trained and raced. When it got hard out there today, I was able to remind myself that you don’t win when it isn’t hard. The pressure was good motivation for me in the end.”

Sport Director Matt Wilson drove behind Durbridge during his race effort.

“Durbo is a level-headed guy,” explained Wilson. “He wanted some specific information over the radio with good time checks and a little encouragement towards the end. His radio stopped working during the second half of the course, so it was frustrating for him not have the information he wanted, but he was obviously riding super strong by that point.”

Durbridge crashed yesterday during his pre-ride, and there was some concern that he would deal with stiffness or soreness.

“The crash yesterday didn’t impact me at all today,” said Durbridge. “I didn’t feel it at all.”

Durbridge was full of praise for the new course changes.

“It was great to have full road closures this year,” he noted. “This way traffic didn’t impact anyone. It was windy out there today but super fast. We don’t see 51 kilometre/hour averages too often. The course definitely suited me. I hope they keep it the same next year.”

While Durbridge’s win may have been anticipated, the lessor places were more difficult to predict. Matthews beat out time trial specialist Richie Porte (Tasmania) for the final spot on the podium.

“Bling has been preparing for the time trial, and he set the goal to medal here,” said Wilson. “I knew he’d do a good time trial. He’s done fantastic efforts in the past, so I expected him to be up there. Given the form of both Durbo and Dennis, third place is a fantastic result.”

Shara Gillow’s Three For Three

Shara Gillow became the second Australian woman to claim three consecutive national titles in the individual time trial championships today. The Queenslander won the race against the clock at Lake Wendouree in a time of 38:56.59 over the 29.2 kilometer course. Gillow’s gold-medal ride was 1:09 faster than Grace Sulzberger (Tasmania) for silver and 1:20 ahead of Felicty Wardlaw (Victoria) with bronze.

“I’m pretty happy with my ride, and it’s obviously really good to win the national championships again,” said Gillow. “With the course changes this year, it’s hard to compare my effort to my previous titles, and I’m always striving to go better. It’s a special win today, that’s for sure.”

Gillow said she enjoyed the conditions on what she called a ‘straightforward course’ that started with a loop around Lake Wendouree in Ballarat.

“We did a bit more than five kilometers around the lake before we headed straight out of town and straight back,” she said. “There was a bit of wind, which I like, so that worked in my favor. I didn’t break the course down into different sections. My goal was just to go as fast I could the entire time.”

The national champion found it difficult to gauge her effort early on in the race.

“I caught the first two riders I was chasing, but they weren’t medal contenders,” she explained. “Once I had gone past them, it was a bit more difficult to gauge how I was going, and I definitely like to have that tangible mark during a race when possible.”

The effort handily won Gillow the title and equaled the record set by 1992 Olympic road race champion Kathy Watt who claimed the hat trick of time trial titles from 1992-1994.

“I actually only found out recently that Kathy Watt had set the mark with three titles and that it hadn’t been broken,” admitted Gillow. “I’ve equaled that now. I didn’t have any extra pressure to chase that record. I always put pressure on myself anyway.”

While Gillow delivered the standout result, all four ORICA-AIS starters had strong rides in Ballarat. Tiffany Cromwell rounded out the top five with Amanda Spratt in seventh place and Gracie Elvin one spot further back in eighth.

“I expected all four of our riders to finish in the top ten,” said Sport Director Dave McPartland. “They came up in the top eight. I’m pleased, but I wouldn’t say it’s a surprise. Tiff and Spratty haven’t done much time trial work in the last six months, so their rides were respectable in that regard. Gracie is the most inexperienced of the bunch, so I’m quite happy to see her run eighth.”

ORICA-AIS will challenge for the national criterium title tomorrow. In 2012, the team won the criterium championships with Alexis Rhodes.

1. Luke DURBRIDGE (WA) 43:26.71
2. Rohan DENNIS (SA) 43:47.98 +21.2
3. Michael MATTHEWS (ACT) 44:11.85 +45.1
4. Richard PORTE (TAS) 44:14.86 +48.1
5. Jacob KAUFFMANN (NSW) 46:10.39 +2:43.6
6. William CLARKE (TAS) 46:21.45 +2:54.7
7. Nick BENSLEY (VIC) 46:37.86 +3:11.1
8. Jack ANDERSON (QLD) 46:43.12 +3:16.4
9. Cameron WURF (TAS) 46:45.28 +3:18.5
10. Shane MILLER (VIC) 46:53.33 +3:26.6
11. Michael CUPITT (ACT) 46:56.42 +3:29.7
12. Marc WILLIAMS (ACT) 47:05.18 +3:38.4
13. Blair WINDSOR (NSW) 47:18.85 +3:52.1
14. Joseph LEWIS (NSW) 47:24.71 +3:58.0
15. Brodie TALBOT (NSW) 47:29.70 +4:02.9
16. Ben DYBALL (NSW) 47:43.94 +4:17.2
17. Michael GALLAGHER (VIC) 47:44.90 +4:18.1
18. Jack BOBRIDGE (SA) 47:56.46 +4:29.7
19. Nicholas SQUILLARI (VIC) 48:07.18 +4:40.4
20. Peter HERZIG (QLD) 48:16.66 +4:49.9
21. Stephen LANE (VIC) 48:33.22 +5:06.5
22. Karl EVANS (SA) 48:48.44 +5:21.7
23. Michael TROY (NSW) 48:49.45 +5:22.7
24. David KELLY (VIC) 48:54.79 +5:28.0
25. Mark FENNER (NSW) 48:57.84 +5:31.1
26. Jay BOURKE (VIC) 49:13.50 +5:46.7
27. Joel STRACHAN (VIC) 49:24.05 +5:57.3
28. Benjamin JOHNSON (VIC) 49:41.16 +6:14.4
29. Thomas DONALD (QLD) 49:42.89 +6:16.1
30. Correy EDMED (QLD) 50:06.56 +6:39.8
31. Jacob SUTHERLAND (VIC) 50:33.89 +7:07.1
32. Mark FACEY (VIC) 51:28.31 +8:01.6
33. Samuel RIX (VIC) 52:14.06 +8:47.3
34. Paul FLEUREN (QLD) 52:35.85 +9:09.1
35. Peter DONAHOE (VIC) 52:53.76 +9:27.0
36. Reece-Emerson VAN BEEK (VIC) 53:18.99 +9:52.2
37. David FAIRBURN (VIC) 53:55.21 +10:28.5
38. Matt TOZER (SA) 54:12.95 +10:46.2
39. Luke TUDDENHAM (VIC) 54:55.72 +11:29.0
40. Brett COTTEE (NSW) 1h04:54.02 +21:27.3

1. Shara GILLOW (QLD) 38:36.59
2. Grace SULZBERGER (TAS) 39:46.23 +1:09.6
3. Felicity WARDLAW (VIC) 39:57.23 +1:20.6
4. Taryn HEATHER (VIC) 40:00.36 +1:23.7
5. Tiffany CROMWELL (SA) 40:07.33 +1:30.7
6. Ruth CORSET (QLD) 40:12.84 +1:36.2
7. Amanda SPRATT (NSW) 40:22.59 +1:45.9
8. Gracie ELVIN (ACT) 40:37.86 +2:01.2
9. Carla RYAN (QLD) 40:38.66 +2:02.0
10. Bridie O’DONNELL (VIC) 40:49.46 +2:12.8
11. Clare DALLAT (VIC) 40:59.05 +2:22.4
12. Pippa SAVAGE (VIC) 41:10.55 +2:33.9
13. Loren ROWNEY (QLD) 41:12.94 +2:36.3
14. Katrin GARFOOT (QLD) 41:13.97 +2:37.3
15. Samantha DE RITER (VIC) 41:33.59 +2:56.9
16. Sarah ROY (NSW) 41:45.59 +3:09.0
17. Ailie MCDONALD (ACT) W23 42:04.58 +3:27.9
18. Miranda GRIFFITHS (VIC) 42:34.00 +3:57.4
19. Ashlee ANKUDINOFF (NSW) 42:34.10 +3:57.5
20. Lucy COLDWELL (VIC) 43:14.90 +4:38.3
21. Lucy BARKER (SA) 43:28.98 +4:52.3
22. Nicole WHITBURN (VIC) 43:32.12 +4:55.5
23. Jessica ALLEN (VIC) W23 43:36.92 +5:00.3
24. Lizzi CLEMENTS (QLD) 43:55.23 +5:18.6
25. Stephanie FRAWLEY (VIC) 44:14.58 +5:37.9
26. Cassandra DODD (QLD) W23 44:31.80 +5:55.2
27. Victoria LUXTON-BAIN (VIC) 44:32.46 +5:55.8
28. Sarah RILEY (VIC) 44:55.20 +6:18.6
29. Lauretta HANSON (VIC) W23 45:18.62 +6:42.0
30. Carley MCKAY (VIC) 45:24.15 +6:47.5
31. Rachel WARD (VIC) 45:33.82 +6:57.2
32. Nicole MCNAMARA (VIC) 51:07.55 +12:30.9



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