ORICA-AIS to continue momentum into Cadel Evans Road Race

Wed 28 Jan 2015

Full of confidence following a dominant display at the Santos Women’s Tour last week, ORICA-AIS return to Victoria for the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race this Saturday.

The strong five-woman lineup sees just one change from the team that claimed the overall victory and three stage wins in Adelaide with former Australian champion Gracie Elvin to replace Melissa Hoskins who returns to the velodrome for the national track championships this week.

Sport director Martin Barras said morale is high, courtesy of the confidence gained from the fruition of long-term planning.

“It’s been a very interesting start to the season because there are a lot of decisions that go back to the end of the season last year in terms of how we wanted to get into this season,” Barras said.

“We followed those processes from the word go, from the very first day of the Bay Classic, and we have been very very happy with the way the team has handled themselves.

“The buzz around the team is very much around that. We see the team operating very well as a unit and that’s what gives us the most confidence.”

The team’s aggressive style of racing will again be on display, promising an exciting battle in Geelong.

“We are looking forward to an aggressive race,” Barras said. “I don’t think it would come as a surprise to anyone that we would be keener on a race that separates into smaller groups to try to improve our chances.”

“We do believe, and the results of late indicate, that we have bike riders who present a real opportunity to win this event.

“Therefore for us, it will be about trying to play these cards as well as we can.” 

The inaugural Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race will take place this weekend, with the women’s event on Saturday, 31 January and the men to follow on Sunday, 1 February.

Starting and finishing at Geelong’s waterfront, the 113km women’s course features a lumpy finale that promises to ensure racing comes down to the wire.

ORICA-AIS at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race:

Gracie Elvin
Loes Gunnewijk
Valentina Scandolara
Amanda Spratt
Lizzie Williams