The criteriums at Mount Panorama Pit Complex will be a key stage of the Bathurst Tour, says Cycling NSW CEO Graham Seers.
Since placings on each stage — not time gaps — will decide the overall winners, the close finishes expected for Stage 2 will likely be crucial for sorting out the pecking order.
The 2021 Bathurst Cycling Classic Criteriums will be held on Saturday, 13 March as part of the inaugural three-day Bathurst Tour.
The famous Mount will feature prominently in all three stages. Stage 1 will be a hill climb from bottom to top, while the 100km B2B Road Race will include a full loop of the motor racing circuit.
For the criteriums, organisers have designed a rectangular circuit using pit lane and circling the garages. The four turns, plus a chicane at the pit entrance, mean cornering and positioning skills will be valuable in the hunt for success.
“The criteriums will be fast and exciting to watch — and to race,” Seers said. “Every point will be important to overall victory, and places could be decided in a sprint by less than a tyre-width.”
Seers says the points format will keep the overall result unpredictable until the very end.
"Rather than running it like the Tour de France which runs on time for each stage, the Bathurst Tour will be run on a points system,” Seers said. "If it was done on time, the hill climb could mean the gaps started early, but by having it as a points set-up, it will stay competitive right through until the end of Sunday."
Bathurst Cycling Classic ambassador and local sprinting legend Mark Renshaw, who helped design the weekend’s courses, says he expects a “fast-paced criterium in the pit complex”.
You can enter the 2021 Bathurst Tour, including the criteriums, at https://www.bathurstcyclingclassic.com.au.