The City of Ballarat has netted itself another cycling coup by announcing that it will be hosting a warm up event for the World Championships. A number of national teams including the British indicated that they would like a warm up event and the state government agreed. The event, to be known as the Herald Sun World Cycling Classic Ballarat will be held one week prior to the World Championships. Ballarat, and in particular Buninyong, has a long history of quality cycling with the National Road Series held there each January. In recent years there has been a certain amount of criticism regarding this, with many riders and a number of commentators saying that to have the National series in the one place for so many years, particularly on such a tough course is not the best option and the organisers appear to have taken this into consideration. Organiser for the World Road Championships, Michael Palmer says, “The course has been designed to ensure that it is not too tough, but still provides a solid hit out and an opportunity for riders to acclimatise to Australian conditions. Having the final lap on the testing nationals’ circuit will give them a taste of what to expect in Geelong the following week
“The teams and riders are still to be confirmed, as obviously we are still waiting confirmation on the national teams for the championships themselves and this won’t take place until late August, early September, but we have received a good indication from many countries that they would like to participate in a high quality pre-championships event,” Mr Palmer said.
Starting and finishing at Buninyong, the course will travel a 16km circuit with the final lap following the road race course used for the Australian Open Road Championships. With Ballarat being just over an hour from Melbourne and even less from Geelong, it is likely that a large number of teams will welcome the event.
Date: Sunday, 26 September 2010
Time: 8:30am Elite women’s road race (90km)
12:30pm – Elite men and under-23 men’s road race (123km)