Allen kicks ORICA-SCOTT women off with a podium

Sun 1 Jan 2017

The women’s ORICA-SCOTT team have kicked off the 2017 season with a podium, thanks to a third place finish to Jessica Allen at the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic in Geelong today. 

Australian champion Amanda Spratt also rode herself onto the podium, claiming the points jersey on the Ritchie Bouelvard hotdog circuit.

The team animated much of the 45minutes of racing, with a team member present in each of the attacks off the front. 

It was a move of three riders that formed in the final 10minutes that held on to contest for the victory. Italian Valentina Scandolara (Ale Cycling) took the honours ahead of Shannon Malseed (individual) and Allen. 

Allen, who joined ORICA-SCOTT mid-2016, initiated the move but didn’t have the pace to capitalise.

“I didn’t back myself in the sprint,” Allen said. “The two girls I was with raced really strongly and were able to finish off the strongest.”

Sport director Gene Bates said the signs were good for the day to come, recognising the team had underestimated their impact on the field.

“The team are in good knick,” Bates said. “It’s a tough little race and I think we approached it in a good way by being aggressive and racing how we said we would by making it a hard, tough race.”

“We probably made some tactical errors along the way that I would say probably cost us the win. 

“I think we probably underestimated the positions we were riding ourselves into. They probably didn’t see what we could see from outside of the race, which is how strong they were actually riding and how they were destroying the race.

“We had a really good, health discussion about that after the race and we know how we can use that confidence into the days to come to do some things a little different and come away with the win.”

The Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic continues tomorrow with the tough Portarlington circuit.