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Gerrans sixth in Australian road race championship

Sun 10 Jan 2016

Two-time former champion Simon Gerrans was ORICA-GreenEDGE’s sole finisher in sixth position at the Mars Cycling Australian National Championships this afternoon.

Winner Jack Bobridge (Trek Factory Racing) put in an incredible performance to ride the majority of the 18-lap, 183.6km race in front and surprised everyone to hang on for victory.

Despite a desperate chase effort, ORICA-GreenEDGE wasn’t able to take time off the South Australian.

“It was an incredible ride by Jack,” White acknowledged. “That’s never been seen before on this circuit. We’ve never seen anyone go with four laps to go, let alone 13.”

“We put our team on the front when it got out to nine minutes but as each lap went by the time wasn’t going down.  You might say that maybe we could have put people on the front earlier but in hindsight no one would have predicted a ride like that.”

Looking ahead, White said the team would now turn its attention to the Tour Down Under.

“It was a good hit out, especially for Simon,” White said. “It’s another race in the legs prior to next weekend and we’ll be ready to go again.”

How it happened:

Unlike the women’s race, it didn’t take long for the first move of the men’s race to establish - a 22rider break forming in the opening lap.

With Michael Hepburn and Mitch Docker amongst the group, the remainder of the ORICA-GreenEDGE team was able to settle into the race within the peloton.

Two riders, Jack Bobridge (Trek Factory Racing) and Bernard Sulzberger (Drapac Professional Cycling), broke free from the large move and extended to almost ten minutes advantage over the peloton with their former breakaway companions in between.

Sulzberger dropped off the front shortly after and it was a battle of Bobridge against the peloton in the final 90km of racing.

As the race moved into the second half, ORICA-GreenEDGE hit the front of the peloton in attempt to reduce the gap.

With 50km to go, Bobridge still maintained almost nine minutes advantage and the chances of the race coming back together started to disintegrate.

Recognising the danger, Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing) hit the front on the climb on the fourth last lap in attempt to keep his chances alive.

Cameron Meyer (Team Dimension Data) also made a move and the duo started to take some time off the gap, before Meyer went solo in pursuit and Dennis dropped off.

It took until the final lap for Bobridge to show any signs of slowing down but his advantage was too much, winning by almost three minutes to Meyer.

Mars Cycling Australian National Championships – Elite Men’s Results

1. Jack Bobridge (SA) 4:40:30
2. Cameron Meyer (AUS) +2:52
3. Patrick Lane (VIC) +3:53
6. Simon Gerrans (AUS) +4:56

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