For a second consecutive year, Australian William Clarke (Drapac Professional Cycling) takes the win at the Jayco Herald Sun Tour Prologue in Victoria ahead of Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) and Neil Van Der Ploeg (Avanti-IsoWhey Sports).
In the slippery 2.1km individual time trial course in the CBD, Clarke put down a blistering time in drier conditions that others got to ride, finishing the course in 2:34.27 (49km/h), one second quicker than Ewan and 2 seconds ahead of Van Der Ploeg.
Clarke will wear the leaders jersey into today’s 126.1km stage that starts and finishes in Healesville.
Ewan will pull on the white best young U23 rider jersey for todays stage as well.
The following stages range between 120km and 150kms each day and the Tour will finish on Sunday 7 February at Arthurs Seat.
Team Sky rider Chris Froome is also in Australia for the race and placed 26th in yesterdays ITT. Froome, preferring the longer races against the clock, only finished 8 seconds behind Clarke with a time of 2:42.10.
The Jayco Herald Sun Tour is ranked a 2.1HC by the UCI and has a huge honour roll including an abundant amount of Australians like Baden Cooke, Simon Gerrans, Simon Clarke and Stuart O’Grady, as well as Bradley Wiggins of Great Britain, with defending champion and young gun Cameron Meyer backing up from a solid performance at the Santos Tour Down Under last month.