Tour Down Under Stage 1 – Bobridge Wins


Homegrown hero Jack Bobridge has grabbed all the glory on the opening day winning the stage and claiming the overall lead in the Santos Tour Down Under, the first UCI World Tour event of the season.

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Tour Down Under Stage 1 – Bobridge Wins

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Local knowledge wins the day as Bobridge bags opening honours

Homegrown hero Jack Bobridge has grabbed all the glory on the opening day winning the stage and claiming the overall lead in the Santos Tour Down Under, the first UCI World Tour event of the season.


UniSA-Australia rider Jack Bobridge wins the Hostworks Stage 1 of the 2015 Santos Tour Down Under.  Photo credit – Regallo 

It was a welcome result for the 85 thousand cycling fans who turned out to support Hostworks Stage 1 that rode out from the charming Barossa Valley town of Tanunda for two circuits through the nearby wine growing region before heading across undulating terrain blackened by the recent South Australian bushfire, to the finish in Campbelltown.

25 year old Bobridge, racing in the UniSA-Australia team, sprinted across the line in just under three hours, 20 minutes ahead of the predicted finish time, with Dutchman Lieuwe Westra (Astana) second and West Australian Luke Durbridge (Orica GreenEDGE) third.

The bonus time Bobridge collected for the stage win and during the day has put him in the Santos Ochre Leader’s Jersey, four seconds clear of Westra with Durbridge sitting third overall at six seconds.

It’s the first time in Ochre for Bobridge. The track world record holder and Olympic silver medallist recently moved back to Australia to race domestically and to focus on earning selection in the track squad for the Rio Olympic Games. He is also enjoying fatherhood after wife and fellow Olympian Josie Tomic gave birth to their daughter four months ago.


Jack Bobridge leads the 4 man breakaway on stage 1. Photo: Regallo

Bobridge grew up training on the same roads he raced on today and had promised before the start that he’d be one to watch. But it was a close run thing with the peloton thundering across the line, so close in fact that no time margin was awarded at the finish.

“I know these roads like the back of my hand, so I hope that can be an advantage,” said Bobridge in Tanunda before the race began. “We’ll be getting into some breaks, and try to win a stage. That would be huge for our team.”

True to his word he launched an audacious attack in the opening few kilometres of the 132 kilometre stage with Durbridge, Westra, and Russian Maxim Belkov (Katusha) joining him in front.

The quartet rode out to a lead of just over two minutes but it seemed the peloton had their measure and was comfortable with the gap, confident they could reel the leaders in at will.

At the first of two iiNet intermediate sprints of the day, at Bethany, 28 kilometres into the stage, it was Bobridge who collected the maximum points ahead of Westra and Belkov.

The second time through Bethany, at 60 kilometres, it was Durbridge in front with Belkov and Westra crossing behind him.

After the second loop through Tanunda the breakaway group maintained their lead up to the Subaru King of the Mountain Category 2 climb of Checker Hill where thousands of fans and cyclists dotted the fire ravaged landscape waiting to cheer them on.


The peloton climbs Checker Hill through the fire-blackened landscape of Hostworks Stage 1 of the 2015 Santos Tour Down Under. Photo: Regallo

Over the top is was Bobridge first ahead of Durbridge, Westra and Belkov but even they expected their time at the front would soon come to an end as the gap to the peloton came down.

“To be honest, when we heard we had only 20 seconds or so over the bunch, all the guys pretty much gave up,” said Bobridge. “It was an all day game. We played it perfect and stayed away.

“Having Luke Durbridge along in the break, not only another Australian but a good mate of mine, was an advantage,” he said. “The other advantage I had was knowing the roads.”

Bobridge admits he didn’t want to make the same mistake he made at the recent Australian Championships when he ‘went too early’.

“I learned a lesson at the Nationals,” he said. “The bunch was charging just behind us but (today) I kept it cool. I’ve always been aggressive in this race but (this is my) first time winning a stage and being the leader tomorrow… I’m speechless”

Durbridge says all four in front contributed to the attack.

“We were four big engines at the front and all very committed,” said Durbridge. “Everyone did about the same amount of work and that made our breakaway work. We enjoyed a tailwind going down from Checker Hill and the Gorge was protected,” he explained adding that local knowledge was invaluable. “Jack and I knew where to go hard and where to go easy and we told the Europeans.”

“It was advice the European pair in front appreciated and followed.”

“It was a good group, good riders,” said Westra. “The peloton never gave us much room (but) when we had a good gap over the climb we knew we might have a chance. When it’s downhill like that it’s not so easy to chase back,” he said.

“In the sprint for the stage Bobridge was too strong. Second for me was the best I could do ….. second in the season’s first World Tour race isn’t so bad.”

One team was more disappointed than most that the break wasn’t reeled in before the line and that was Giant-Alpecin who had hoped to set up sprint powerhouse Marcel Kittel for a host at the win.


The peloton winds its way out of Tanunda at the start of stage 1 and has the usual nature break before the chase begins. Photo: Regallo

“We were hoping for some more help in the chase, but everyone was a bit too relaxed,” said Kittel’s team mate Simon Geschke. “We could see them down the road, but in the narrow canyon, it was harder to organise the chase and Astana was blocking a little bit.

“Marcel [Kittel] made it over the climb pretty easy, so we are disappointed. We want to win a stage with Marcel, and today was a good opportunity we missed. It motivates us more to keep fighting here.”

Along with his overall race lead Bobridge also leads the iiNet Sprint Competition but the jersey will be worn tomorrow by Westra while for the Subaru King of the Mountain competition which is also topped by Bobridge the jersey will be on the shoulders of Belkov.

Durbridge is the leader of the Cycle Instead Young Rider classification and was also named the Europcar Most Competitive for the day for his attacking efforts.. |The Virgin Australia leading team after day one is the UniSA-Australia national team.

Tomorrow the race travels along a 150 kilometre route starting in stylish Adelaide suburb of Unley before climbing to Windy Point, through Upper Sturt and onto the testing circuits through Stirling in the Adelaide Hills.

1 BOBRIDGE Jack AUS 02:59:44
2 WESTRA Lieuwe AST @ same time
3 DURBRIDGE Luke OGE @ same time
4 BELKOV Maxim KAT @ same time
5 BONIFAZIO Niccolo LAM @ same time
6 MEERSMAN Gianni EQS @ same time
7 LOBATO DEL VALLE Juan Jose MOV @ same time
8 HAUSSLER Heinrich IAM @ same time
9 VON HOFF Steele AUS @ same time
10 IMPEY Daryl OGE @ same time
11 DUMOULIN Samuel ALM @ same time
12 GESCHKE Simon TGA @ same time
13 MANZIN Lorrenzo FDJ @ same time
14 ALAFACI Eugenio TFR @ same time
15 HAAS Nathan TCG @ same time
16 MARKUS Barry TLJ @ same time
17 SCOTSON Miles AUS @ same time
18 TANNER David IAM @ same time
19 TCATEVICH Aleksei KAT @ same time
20 EVANS Cadel BMC @ same time
21 SANCHEZ GIL Luis Leon AST @ same time
22 IZAGUIRRE INSAUSTI Gorka MOV @ same time
23 HAIG Jack AUS @ same time
24 COLEDAN Marco TFR @ same time
25 DILLIER Silvan BMC @ same time
26 PORTE Richie SKY @ same time
27 WIPPERT Wouter DPC @ same time
28 HANSEN Adam LTS @ same time
29 THOMAS Geraint SKY @ same time
30 HENDERSON Greg LTS @ same time
31 DE VREESE Laurens AST @ same time
32 KITTEL Marcel TGA @ same time
33 TLEUBAYEV Ruslan AST @ same time
34 HERRADA LOPEZ José MOV @ same time
35 HAYMAN Mathew OGE @ same time
36 HAGA Chad TGA @ same time
37 BENNETT George TLJ @ same time
38 BERARD Julien ALM @ same time
39 HANSEN Jesper TCS @ same time
40 DUMOULIN Tom TGA @ same time
41 MACHADO Tiago KAT @ same time
42 WATSON Calvin TFR @ same time
43 FERNANDEZ Ruben MOV @ same time
44 ROGERS Michael TCS @ same time
45 CAPECCHI Eros MOV @ same time
46 SUTTON Christopher SKY @ same time
47 ZAUGG Oliver TCS @ same time
48 MORI Manuele LAM @ same time
49 ROOSEN Timo TLJ @ same time
50 LAGUTIN Sergei KAT @ same time
51 EDMONDSON Alexander AUS @ same time
52 JEANNESSON Arnold FDJ @ same time
53 CLARKE Simon OGE @ same time
54 GRMAY Tsgabu Gebremaryam LAM @ same time
55 ISAYCHEV Vladimir KAT @ same time
56 KLUGE Roger IAM @ same time
57 MEYER Travis DPC @ same time
58 REYNES MIMO Vicente IAM @ same time
59 ELMIGER Martin IAM @ same time
60 DE GENDT Thomas LTS @ same time
61 LASTRAS GARCIA Pablo MOV @ same time
62 ROULSTON Hayden TFR @ same time
63 DENNIS Rohan BMC @ same time
64 PANTANO GOMEZ Jarlison IAM @ same time
65 LINDEMAN Bertjan TLJ @ same time
66 ROY Jérémy FDJ @ same time
67 MALACARNE Davide AST @ same time
68 BOUET Maxime EQS @ same time
69 JUUL JENSEN Christopher TCS @ same time
70 ROE Timothy DPC @ same time
71 MOSER Moreno TCG @ same time
72 MEYER Cameron OGE @ same time
73 HOWES Alex TCG @ same time
74 LE GAC Olivier FDJ @ same time
75 CATALDO Dario AST @ same time
76 PINEAU Cédric FDJ @ same time
77 DE LA CRUZ MELGAREJO David EQS @ same time
78 STANNARD Ian SKY @ same time
79 DIDIER Laurent TFR @ same time
80 KEIZER Martijn TLJ @ same time
81 BOOM Lars AST @ same time
82 STETINA Peter BMC @ same time
83 FLENS Rick TLJ @ same time
84 POZZOVIVO Domenico ALM @ same time
85 POWER Robert AUS @ same time
86 WYSS Danilo BMC @ same time
87 KADRI Blel ALM @ same time
88 VEIKKANEN Jussi FDJ @ same time
89 BAK Lars Ytting LTS @ same time
90 HESJEDAL Ryder TCG @ same time
91 SELIG Rudiger KAT @ same time
92 DURASEK Kristijan LAM @ same time
93 DOMONT Axel ALM @ same time
94 CARUSO Giampaolo KAT @ same time
95 HANSEN Lasse Norman TCG @ same time
96 VILLELLA Davide TCG @ same time
97 CLEMENT Stef IAM @ same time
98 VELITS Martin EQS @ same time
99 BOARO Manuele TCS @ same time
100 MCCONNELL Daniel TFR @ same time
101 SERRY Pieter EQS @ same time
102 KENNAUGH Peter SKY @ same time
103 VAN DER PLOEG Neil AUS @ same time
104 CIMOLAI Davide LAM @ same time
105 BEWLEY Sam OGE @ same time
106 RENSHAW Mark EQS 17
107 SANZ Enrique MOV @ same time
108 BAUER Jack TCG @ same time
109 CLARKE William DPC @ same time
110 FLAKEMORE Campbell BMC 23
111 CHAVANEL Sébastien FDJ @ same time
112 DE HAES Kenny LTS 25
113 TIMMER Albert TGA @ same time
114 LAMPAERT Yves EQS 37
115 TJALLINGII Maarten TLJ 44
116 BONO Matteo LAM 46
117 DE KORT Koen TGA 59
118 SCHÄR Michael BMC @ same time
119 DOCKX Gert LTS 01:09
120 BROWN Graeme DPC 01:28
121 BRUTT Pavel TCS 02:08
122 PUCCIO Salvatore SKY 05:40
123 KOHLER Martin DPC @ same time
124 HEPBURN Michael OGE @ same time
125 ROWE Luke SKY @ same time
126 GOUGEARD Alexis ALM 06:11
127 NIZZOLO Giacomo TFR @ same time
128 VALLEE Boris LTS @ same time
129 FERRARI Roberto LAM @ same time
130 RIBLON Christophe ALM @ same time
131 KERBY Jordan DPC @ same time
132 KOLÁR Michael TCS 08:36
133 CRADDOCK Lawson TGA 10:50

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