Venue: Bathurst, NSW
The Bathurst Cycling Classic provided the ideal starting point for Dhuez Racing in 2020 with a weekend full of racing planned. A solid squad of 14 headed to the Central West of NSW and with new kits freshly delivered from Dhuez Clothing there was plenty of excitement to get out and go fast in the #tricolours.
NSW Hill Climb Championships
The NSW Hill Climb Championships were held on Saturday 14th March with a 4.1km course finishing atop the iconic Mt Panorama race track circuit. Dhuez riders all performed extremely well with some excellent results across the morning.
In the elite Women’s category, Katie Banerjee took the win by just over 10 seconds from a tenacious Simone Grounds to secure a Dhuez Racing quinella.
The men also showed their climbing prowess with more podium results including Luc McCann 3rd (Masters 1 Men), Daniel Sullivan 2nd (Masters 2 Men) and Jono Farley 3rd (U19 Men).
Edwin Britts put in a notable effort with his flying 9min20sec being the fastest ascent from the Dhuez Racing team and enough to secure 5th in the U23 Mens category.
Unfortunately the weather then closed in late on Saturday and a downpour of rain lead to cancellation of the afternoon criterium racing.
Bathurst Cycling Classic (100km Road Race)
MEN’S RACE | Race report – LUC McCANN
160 riders in the wave including 6 Dhuez.
Dan Cranfield, Luc McCann, Brendan Buhagiar – 19-34
Charl van Wyk, Mick Curran, Richard Younger – 35-39
We set a hard tempo early up Mt Panorama splitting the bunch into a lead group of 30 which was then split again thanks to some guttering in the crosswinds and a few attacks up Mt Rockley. That left a lead group of 8 including Charl, Mick, Richard and a chase group of 12 including Dan and Luc.
An unfortunate puncture meant Richard was out of the race shortly after making it into the break.
Charl and Mick drove the break onwards to maintain a hard tempo and meant the chase group including passengers Dan and Luc were never going to make the catch.
In the end, Charl van Wyk and Mick Curran proved to be head and shoulders above their breakaway companions and crossed the line together in 1st and 2nd in 35-39 age category.
Geoff Rickards of Turbo Studio was the only rider in the 19-34 category to make the break which meant he got to cross the line solo in 1st while Dan Cranfield and Luc McCann sprinted in a reduced bunch for the minor placings with Dan taking 2nd and Luc 4th.
The Womens race was a tightly contested event with strong performances by all riders.
Katie Banerjee again proved to be the strongest climber in the pack and lead the riders over Mt Panorama to claim the QOM prize for the race.
Shortly afterwards, Emma Bunn suffered an unfortunate double puncture which put her out of the event only 20km into her #ridebathurst adventure. So frustrating!
The peloton then continued to be whittled down due to the pressure at the front of the group and the repeated elevations and cross-winds making the race a true endurance test. As they closed on the finish just 9 riders remained in the lead group and Simone Grounds made her bid for victory with an attack over the final hill. She lead into the town of Bathurst aiming to hold the small advantage over the other riders as the run to the line became more technical with several roundabouts complicating the sprint. However, Emily Watts (Subaru-GIANT) was not caught off guard and took the lead within sight of the line for a well-fought victory.
Simone Grounds finished a brave 2nd and Katie Banerjee was 5th to the line.
Pip Ash also played a pivotal role within the race and finished just over 6 minutes after the leaders. Her result delivered an important win for the #tricolours in the Women’s Team Classification with the combined time of Simone, Katie and Pip (9h:12m:56s) just 78seconds ahead of the SUVelo team.
Congratulations on a terrific team result ladies!
2020 Bathurst Cycling Classic – RESULTS
NSW HILL CLIMB CHAMPIONSHIPS
Masters 1 Men – Luc McCann – 3rd
Masters 2 Men – Daniel Sullivan – 2nd
U19 Men – Jono Farley – 3rd
BATHURST CYCLING CLASSIC
Elite wave (100km) – Edwin Britts – 8th
40-44 Female (100km) – Simone Grounds – 1st
45-49 Female (100km) – Katie Banerjee – 3rd