Mitchelton-SCOTT expecting an open race in the hunt for more history at Women’s Tour Down UnderMon 13 Jan 2020
Unbeaten at the event since its inception in 2016, Mitchelton-SCOTT is expecting one of the most open races in history when it arrives in Adelaide for the Santos Women’s Tour Down Under which begins on Thursday, 16th January.
The four-day race is without a major climb in 2020, removing the platform that has seen multiple world championship medallist Amanda Spratt win the last three editions and opening up the options from within the Australian outfit and from rivals.
Mitchelton-SCOTT at the Women’s Tour Down Under (16-19 January):
Jessica Allen (AUS, 26)
Grace Brown (AUS, 27)
Gracie Elvin (AUS, 31)
Lucy Kennedy (AUS, 31)
Amanda Spratt (AUS, 32)
Georgia Williams (NZL, 26)
The open course, without any major climbs, indicates a tight race in 2020.
Whilst the three road stages are not pan flat, there’s no true Queen stage and the creativity of teams as well as bonus seconds will be crucial to make the difference.
Mitchelton-SCOTT has won all four previous editions of the Women’s Tour Down Under, in the inaugural year with Katrin Garfoot followed by a history making three-consecutive victories to Spratt.
The team has also claimed six stage victories, including to Brown and Spratt in 2019.
Amanda Spratt – Three-time champion and Australian Champion:
“I’ve won three times before and I know in January my form is good and it is a period of the year where I always want to be in good form, so there’s no reason why I can’t think that I can win again next year and make it a four-peat.
“I enjoy the pressure of returning as a defending champion and that pressure is something I have become quite used to over the past two or three years.
“The course next year isn’t as predictable as the last years. Last year with the Mengler Hill finish, you knew that was probably going to be the decisive day for the GC.
“It is a bit more of a dynamic course for 2020, it will still be tough and I’m sure there will be a few surprises. It will be very interesting without one main climb where you can put time into people.”
Martin Vestby – Sport Director:
“The Tour Down Under is our home race, we have won it before and of course we are the team to beat so everybody looks at us. It doesn’t give us more or less pressure because that’s always there.
“It will be more of a game around seconds and bonus seconds, and I think it will be a really close going into the third stage which I think will probably be the hardest one.
“It will be hard to make any big gaps or really take control of the general classification so it’s going to be a fight the whole way.”
2020 Santos Women’s Tour Down Under – Stage Details:
Thursday, 16 Jan: Stage 1 – Hahndorf to Macclesfield, 116.3km
Friday, 17 Jan: Stage 2 – Murray Bridge to Birdwood, 114.9km
Saturday, 18 Jan: Nairne to Stirling, 109.1km
Sunday, 19 Jan: Adelaide, 42.5km
Photo courtesy of Getty Images.