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Jayco Bay Classic Series  2011



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Race 1- Gilmore sprints to victory in opener

Geelong Botanical Gardens, 1.8 km

Race Writeup

The 2011 season got underway with a bunch sprint in the first race of the 2011 Jayco Bay Classic series.

Rochelle Gilmore (Honda) sprinted for victory just ahead of Tasmanian Belinda Goss (Vetta Pasta) and Nicole Whitburn (Prime Realestate).

The women’s event was delayed for 40 minutes due to a crash in the warm up. When the ambulance finally cleared the course, the women were left with 30 minutes plus 3 laps to race.

The Jayco Bay Classic is raced over four days and offers two chances to the women in terms of prizes. The coveted overall and sprint leaders jersey. At the end of day one of racing, Honda Dream Team holds both jerseys. Gilmore, in the leader’s jersey and Peta Mullens in the sprint jersey. The Honda team did not dominate the race as expected, there were a number of strong teams that all tried to change the outcome of the race. In the end however, it was Gilmore who crossed the line first.

The women did not hang around once they finally got started. They lapped the 1.8km circuit in 2 minutes 48 seconds. A number of riders tried to attack on the decent to the tricky corner at the back of the course before the short climb back to the start/finish line. With sprints in the first 10 and 20 minutes the bunch were strung out as they completed the last 300m of the lap. Mullens won the first sprint ahead of Katherine O’Shea (Vetta Pasta) and Alex Carle (Jayco AIS).

The group regrouped but a crash on the bottom corner disrupted the front of the race. Megan Dunn (Honda), Kendelle Hodges (Jayco VIS) and Jess Allan (Jayco VIS) went down. Dunn, who is already recovering from a broken wrist managed to stay get back on her bike quickly with the other two riders. So fast that she was actually in the leading group as the race crossed the start/finish line. At the start of the second sprint lap, Lauren Kitchen (Jayco AIS) led Dunn and Allan across the line. The three created a break. They were quickly joined by Myfany Galloway (TDT/Rac/BikeForce).

With 50m to go to the sprint, Dunn moved out of Allan’s slipstream and crossed the line for maximum points.

With 4 laps to go, the bunch was all together. Amanda Spratt (Jayco AIS) attacked the bunch and led for a lap before being joined by Melissa Hoskins (Honda) and Kirsty Broun (Virgin Blue). The three held a lead of 150 on the bunch before Bella King (Vetta Pasta) was sent to the front by her team leader Goss.

At the bell the peloton were all together and led across the line by Tiffany Cromwell (Honda) and closely marked by Goss.

In the sprint to the line, Gilmore went a little early and had to push hard to get to the line ahead of Goss and Whitburn.

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Post Race Comments

Rochelle Gilmore (Honda) was very happy to win the first race of the 2011 season. “It is fantastic to win the first race of 2011. 2010 worked out pretty good for me with the Commonwealth Games [Gilmore won Gold]. Every year you think you can learn more and get better, so to come back on the first race of the year in 2011 is great,” said Gilmore.

Reflecting on the strength of the women's race, Gilmore added, “It was a full on fast race, we tried to cover everything but we did miss a few breaks. That makes us nervous about the future races. A rider went away from the Australian Institute of Sport that we did not know. Just goes to show there are a lot of riders out there.”

Gilmore has been instrumental in securing Honda support for the Australian based team and her own professional team in Europe to be known as Lotto Honda in 2011. Gilmore has managed to secure contracts for a number of Australian cyclists (Cromwell and Josie Tomic) join Gilmore for 2011 season. “The support from Honda has been great. This is the first experience some riders will see what it is like to be on a professional team. Everything is done for them. All they have to do is think about riding their bikes. Megan Dunn [2008 winner of the Jayco Bay Classic] joined the team this year and she could not believe what we were providing for her. The Honda Dream Team is a stepping stone to a professional career and it is great to have someone like Megan on the team. She is so excited and it is great to show her an environment that she has nothing to do.”

Belinda Goss (Vetta Pasta) arrived yesterday after a very successful Christmas carnival campaign. “I have been on the track in Tasmania since boxing day. I did not have quite enough in the legs in the last 10m, hopefully I will have good sleep and be fresh for tomorrow,” said Goss.

Looking to the second race at Port Arlington, Goss said, “I like Port Arlington. I have had a win their before so I do like the course. You don’t have to fight for position so much and the race sorts itself out quite well. I am looking forward to it.”

Nicole Whitburn (Prime) sprinted for third just ahead of Mullens. “I feel pretty good. I was hoping to get top 5, so a podium spot is great. It was a tough day with a shorter race and the wind was really strong at the back of the course. I am not sure how I will go tomorrow but I will give it everything,” said Whitburn.

Megan Dunn (Honda) had a great 2010 with 3 gold medals at the velodrome at the Commonwealth Games. Dunn is a  true fighter. She crashed in the first race and got back up to finish. At the recent Oceania track championships, Dunn knew she had to win the points race, to secure her place at the World Championships in Appledorn in March 2011.In that race, she crashed with 30 laps to go and knew she had broken her wrist but got back on her bike and went on to win the event. “It had been made very clear to me before the event that I had to win to secure my place at worlds. When I crashed, I think I was just on adreneline. I knew that I had to get back into the race and did. At the end I told the medical staff I thought I had broken my wrist and I had.”

Racing in a plaster cast, Dunn was really happy to be riding for the Honda team. “It is a great get fit quick and a fantastic team. I am in a new role and happy to work to get a win for the team,” added Dunn.

Looking to the rest of 2011, Dunn has her eyes on a world title on the track and a full season with the AIS in Europe. After that it is a pro-contract she hopes that will enable her to balance her desires for an Olympic medal on the track and a road career.


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Results - Top 10 - click here to see full result

Position Name Team
1 Rochelle Gilmore Honda Dream Team
2 Belinda Goss Vetta Pasta
3 Nicole Whitburn Prime Realestate
4 Peta Mullens Honda Dream Team
5 Kirsty Broun Virgin Blue
6 Judith Arndt HTC Highroad
7 Jess Allan Jayco VIS
8 Sophie Williamson Bicycle Superstore
9 Emy Huntsman Jayco VIS
10 Emma Mackie Virgin Blue

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Overall Classification Top 10 - click here to see full result

Position Name Team
12 Rochelle Gilmore Honda Dream Team
10 Belinda Goss Vetta Pasta
8 Nicole Whitburn Prime Realestate
7 Peta Mullens Honda Dream Team
6 Kirsty Broun Virgin Blue
5 Judith Arndt HTC Highroad
4 Jess Allan Jayco VIS
3 Sophie Williamson Bicycle Superstore
2 Emy Huntsman Jayco VIS
1 Emma Mackie Virgin Blue
Sprint 1
Position Name Team
1 Peta Mullens Honda Dream Team
2 Katherine O'Shea Vetta Pasta
3 Alex Carle Jayco AIS
Sprint 2
Position Name Team
1 Megan Dunn Honda Dream Team
2 Jess Allan Jayco VIS
3 Lauren Kitchen Jayco AIS

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Photos   Click on any image to enlarge >>


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