With some of the biggest names in Aussie cycling signing on for the Nationals the Victorian city of Ballarat will be bursting with two-wheel talent during this first week of the new year.
Richie Porte, Steele von Hoff ,Gracie Elvin, Caleb Ewan, Adam Hansen, Katrin Garfoot, Brendan Canty, Peta Mullens, Jay McCarthy, Tiffany Cromwell plus Cameron and Travis Meyer are but a few of the riders who’ll compete in the 2017 MARS Road Nationals on the Buninyong course.
Spratt Eyes Third Jersey
Reigning female road champion Amanda Spratt, who’s hoping to defend her title, said it’s been an honour to wear the green and gold for the past 12 months.
“It’s something everyone strives for in their career,” said Spratt who was also 2012 national champion.
“As reigning champ I am pretty stoked to get to defend my title in front of my parents, they come down every year to cheer me on, so it makes Ballarat such a special place for us,” said Spratt.
With the men’s & women’s road races the main events there’ll be plenty of other action with the criterium, time trials and mass participation Gran Fondo just a few of the scheduled events.
Von Hoff On Fire
Man of the moment Steele von Hoff is looking forward to Wednesday night’s criterium and a hot favourite to make the podium of the fast-paced event.
“There’s a lot to love about racing in Ballarat, it’s now the iconic home of Road Nationals,” von Hoff told Cycling Australia.
“The streets are lined with all the crowds and people cheering you on and I’ve always got a few family and friends up in the pub by the finish line and really gets you motivated for the win. I’ve won twice here in a sprint so it will be good to use this as a launching pad into my 2017 season.”
With plenty of strong sprinters in the mix, von Hoff said he was excited to the going up against the competition that includes some of the world’s top cycling talent. “I am looking forward to lining up against Caleb Ewan, Richie Porte and Gerrans to try and test myself and see where I am at,” he said.
For 2017 the event will be broadcast on both SBS and Fox Sports with extensive coverage starting from 1pm. It will also be live streamed via SBS Cycling Central, SBS On Demand and Foxtel GO app.
Save The Date
What: MARS 2017 Cycling Australia Road National Championships + Road Nationals Gran Fondo
When: 4-8 January 2017, Ballarat
▪ Wednesday 4 January – Criterium
▪ Thursday 5 January – Individual Time Trial
▪ Saturday 7 January – Gran Fondo / U23 Road Race
▪ Sunday 8 January – Men’s and Women’s Road Race