Double kick-start for ORICA-AIS this weekend with SwissEver GP Cham-HagendornFri 29 May 2015
Complementing the recent team camp in Tuscany and team racing in Belgium/Holland this weekend, the second half of ORICA-AIS’ squad will race the SwissEver GP Cham-Hagendorn in Switzerland this Sunday.
This weekend marks the beginning of the next phase of racing for the Australian outfit, looking towards the Tour season that follows.
Sport director Gene Bates is confident that the UCI1.2 level race will set the team up strongly for some big goals to follow.
“It’s the first time we have done the race, it’s worked out well that we can take a team up North and a team to Switzerland straight after the training camp,” Bates said.
“It’ll be the first race after the camp and probably about three weeks for some of the riders so it’s a really good entry point back in.
“Everyone has come out of the camp in the good frame of mind, had some good training and now they get to utilise that straight away in a couple of one-day races; reset and then get stuck into the four major Tours.”
ORICA-AIS will field a five-woman team including former Australian champion Amanda Spratt and 2015 Santos Women’s Tour champion Valentina Scandolara with the support of Alexandra Manly, Sarah Roy and Lizzie Williams in their first seasons with the team.
“We like to spread the load across the riders and this race is no different,” Bates said.
“Having said that Valentina and Amanda will certainly be the riders that the course suits the most but we will back anyone that gets into a good move.
“We will be nice and aggressive, that’s why we are going there.”
The SwissEver GP Cham-Hagendorn is raced on a ten-kilometre circuit, with the peloton to complete 11laps. The circuit involves one climb that Bates doesn’t rate as too difficult but after 11 repeats, expects it to take its toll.
“It’s not a super hard climb but of course after 11 times it becomes quite difficult so the race will be selective,” Bates said. “And couple that with really small, narrow farm roads, we’ll see a really aggressive style race which is perfect for the team we are taking there.”
“As a slightly lower level race there is a bit of pressure and you need to race it a little differently.
“No one is going to do the work for us. The girls are going to have to be really attentive and be on the front foot the whole time, otherwise they will be caught out and other teams will just look to us to do all the work.”
ORICA-AIS at SwissEver GP Cham-Hagendorn (31 May):