Cycling Australia

Ben Dyball does the double with road race win

Ben Dyball (Australia) completed a golden double on the final day of competition at the 2019 Oceania Road Championships in Tasmania, March 17. The under 23 men’s crown was taken out by Tyler Lindorff of Australia as New Zealand’s Ella Wyllie picked up the under 19 women’s title.

Elite/Under 23 Men’s Road Race

Australia’s Ben Dyball was is fine form as he attacked with around 40 kilometres to go to solo to a convincing win ahead of New Zealand’s Jason Christie and defending champion Chris Harper (Australia).

“It was a relief when I finally crossed the line. I had a decent gap in the end but the last 10km was pretty hard,” Dyball said.

“I didn’t want to be trying to have to chase back breaks, so I wanted to be at the front from the start,” Dyball added of his tactic of being part of the move from the opening kilometres.

“I attacked on the climb the second last lap and once I got a gap I got in my own rhythm. The gap kept going out, so I was able to relax a bit in the final few kilometres.”

As soon as the gun started the action was on in the 158 kilometre race covering six laps of the undulating course around Railton. The first attack of the day was from defending champion Harper who looked to animate the race from the start. Harper was (Australia), Liam Magennis (Australia), Campbell Jones (Australia), Dylan Sunderland (Australia), Matthew Dinham (Australia), Ryan Thomas (Australia), Christie and Dyball.

The 14 rider group became 17 on the second lap with Morgan Smith (Australia), Lionel Mawjoined by Michael Potter (Australia), Kaine Cannan (Australia), Drew Morey (Australia), Ben Metcalfe (Australia), Tim Cameron (Australia), Jay Vineditt (Australia) and Logan Griffin (Australia) bridging across. Working well together the break established a one minute and 45 second lead with two laps of the course complete, as the peloton worked together to keep them in check.

Unhappy with the composition of the group Harper was again the aggressor as he looked to show his status as the defending champion. As the group behind reacted to Harper’s move only Christie, Dyball, Griffin, Morey, Thomas, Vine and Sunderland were able to keep the pace as 17 whittled down to eight. The smaller group was able to work well together and steadily built an advantage of 50 seconds on the chasers and a further 30 seconds on the quickly reducing peloton.

With the race inside on the penultimate lap Dyball sensed his chance and attacked on the climb on lap five and quickly soloed away with rest of the break unable to respond. Harper, Christie and Morey set off in pursuit though Dyball quickly showed the form that won him the time trial gold with the advantage quickly growing.

As the bell sounded Dyball was clear by two and a half minutes with the peloton a further two minutes back. Attacks came from both the chase and peloton though each move proved to be short lived. Dyball had plenty of time to celebrate as he crossed the line clear by more than four minutes. In the sprint for silver Harper was the first to open though the uphill drag to the line allowed Christie to claw his way over the top to add a second silver to his name with Harper completing the podium.

The under 23 crown was taking out by Tyler Lindorff (Australia) ahead of Michael Potter (Australia) and bronze Peter Livingstone (Australia).

Elite Men

Gold: Benjamin DYBALL (AUS)
Silver: Jason CHRISTIE (NZL)
Bronze: Chris HARPER (AUS)

Under 23 Men

Gold: Tyler LINDORFF (AUS)
Silver: Michael POTTER (AUS)

Under 19 Women’s Road Race

New Zealand’s Ella Wyllie stormed clear in the final corner to sprint away to the title ahead of countrywoman Hannah Bartram with Neve Bradbury (Australia) completing the podium.

The pace was on early on lap one of the three lap 79 kilometre race with a 10 rider group of Francesca Sewell (Australia), Catelyn Turner (Australia), Lee Boon (New Zealand), Stella Nightingale (New Zealand), Lucy Thomson (New Zealand), Henrietta Christie (New Zealand), Jorja Swain (New Zealand), Bradbury and Bartram and Wyllie going clear.

The strength of the rising stars within Oceania was evident with riders continually testing each other with attacks throughout the course.

On the final lap six remained with Sewell, Turner, Bradbury, Bartram, Christie and Wyllie continuing to test each other throughout the lap. Every attack was quickly marked as the lead group raced towards the finish. A late move by Wyllie in the final kilometre saw her hit the final corner ahead of the group, giving her the advantage she needed to seal the title. Bartram lead the sprint home just head ahead of Bradbury.

Under 19 Women

Gold: Ella WYLLIE (NZL)
Silver: Hannah BARTRAM (NZL)
Bronze: Neve BRADBURY (AUS)

Sharlotte Lucas defends Oceania road title with victory in Tasmania

New Zealand’s Sharlotte Lucas successfully defended her women’s road race Oceania title unleashing a powerful sprint as Sarah Gigante (Australia) won the under 23 women’s title on day two of the 2019 Oceania Road Championships in Tasmania, March 16. Finn Fisher-Black (New Zealand) made it double gold as he took a solo win in the under 19 men’s road race to add to his time trial success.

Elite/Under 23 Women’s Road Race

Following a tactical and cautious opening three laps of the four lap 105 kilometre race a select group of nine riders emerged to contest the title. Lucas and Gigante were joined by Jemma Eastwood (Australia), Justine Barrow (Australia), Kirsty McCallum (New Zealand), Alicia Evans (New Zealand), Nicole Frain (Australia), Georgia Christie (NZL) and Alana Forster (Australia) with the group trading attacks on the final lap. Sensing the opportunity to snare the title every move was quickly chased down leaving the group together as they hit the final kilometre.

As they rounded the final corner with 200 metres to go Australian Champion Gigante hit out first, opening her sprint and securing a small gap the field. The uphill drag for the line proved too much for the young Australian with Lucas pipping her on the line for the title. Gigante would hold on for second across the line to add the under 23 title to her time trial gold.

Elite Women

Gold: Sharlotte LUCAS (NZL)
Silver: Justine BARROW (VIC)
Bronze: Kirsty MCCALLUM (NZL)

Under 23 Women

Gold: Sarah GIGANTE (VIC)
Silver: Jemma EASTWOOD (VIC)
Bronze: Georgia CHRISTIE (NZL)

“It is actually quite a relief,” Lucas explained. “I had a terrible last couple of days with my time trial bike. It broke on the plane and I basically had to stick it back together and had mechanical problems yesterday, so I was disappointed with that. To come out today and back up from last year has been awesome.”

In a very tactical race entering as the defending champion and a favourite for a second title meant any move Lucas made was closely monitored by the peloton.

“I felt really marked and I am wearing pro kit and you are always sort of marked and obviously as the defending champion it was quite a mission. I had a couple of goes to get away, but we were reeled back in and I knew obviously on that last lap what I needed to do to win that sprint finish.

“It is quite a technical one coming around that corner, but it is quite uphill, so I was happy to take out the win.

“Sarah [Gigante] put a decent gap on me actually and I was like oh I’m going to have to make this gap up, but I managed to do it and flew past her on the line.”

Under 19 Men’s Road Race

New Zealand’s Finn Fisher-Black was again too strong for the field as he soloed to victory on the final lap putting his strength against the clock that earned him the time trial gold on Friday to use again.

A three rider break formed on the opening lap consisting of Lachlan Robertson (New Zealand), Ari Scott (New Zealand) and Kiaan Kerei Watts (New Zealand) holding a two minute and forty second advantage as they crossed the finish line for the first of four times. As the pace increased on the second lap Robertson fell off the pace as Laurence Pithie (New Zealand), Alexander White (New Zealand) and Guy Yarrell (New Zealand) bridged across with the now five rider group maintaining an advantage of around a minute over the next lap and a half.

Heading in to the final lap Kerei Watts hit out solo before being caught with 20 kilometres to go setting off a flurry of attacks. A four rider move lead by Fisher Black and including Dylan Hopkins (Australia), Sebastian Barrett (Australia) and Josh Lane (New Zealand) emerged with 15 kilometres to go and proved to be the decisive move of the day. Initially working well together the quartet built a near 30 second advantage before Fisher-Black attacked as he saw the five kilometres to go sign and once in time trial mode, he was unstoppable finishing 24 seconds clear of Barrett who won the sprint for second ahead of Lane.

Under 19 Men

Silver: Sebastian BARRETT (AUS)
Bronze: Josh LANE (NZL)

Ben Dyball and Kate Perry win 2019 Oceania Road Championship time trials

Australia won five of six titles on offer in the time trials on the opening day of the 2019 Oceania Road Championships in Tasmania. Australia’s Kate Perry and Ben Dyball claimed maiden Oceania titles, having previously won five Oceania medals in the discipline between them. Under 23 titles went to Sarah Gigante (Australia) and Liam Magennis (Australia) while Francesca Sewell (Australia) and Finn-Fisher-Black (New Zealand) claimed the under 19 crowns.

Elite Women

1 Kate PERRY (AUS)
2 Nicole FRAIN (AUS) +1:09
3 Jenny PETTENON (AUS) +2:15

With bronze and silver medals to her name Perry claimed what is the biggest result of her career as she stormed home to snare her maiden title.

“It is a pretty nice win. It is probably my biggest win so far,” said Perry. “I was pretty confident coming in to today that if I did everything right then hopefully, I would be able to take it on the day and I was very fortunate the legs were good.

“I have basically gone from bronze to silver to gold and I have put in a lot of work for this one and the preparation is definitely key so I was very fortunate I knew exactly what I was in for so it is a very nice feeling to be on the top step.”

Elite Men

1 Benjamin DYBALL (AUS)
2 Jason CHRISTIE (NZL) +24
3 Michael FREIBERG (AUS) +1:35

For Dyball the victory was a reward for consistency as he claimed his fourth Oceania time trial medal and his first gold. “I have been twice second and once third, so it is good to finally be on the top step.

“The wind was a bit different to yesterday [recon] with a headwind on the way back but today there was a little wind on the way back, but it seemed quicker.

Under 23 Women

2 Georgia CHRISTIE (NZL) +13
3 Jemma EASTWOOD (AUS) +30

2018 under 19 road race champion Sarah Gigante continued her successful year adding the under 23 Oceania title to her under 23 time trial and elite and under 23 road race national title beating former champion Georgia Christie to the gold medal.

“It is really special. I have never won the Oceania time trial title before, so it is cool.

“I have been targeting this race specifically since Nationals really. I turned my focus really from the Summer of Cycling to Oceania’s down here in Tasmania so it’s really cool to see the hard word pay off.

“It is good to have the Kiwi’s here I was unsure how I would go against them. I don’t think I have ever raced Georgia Christie and some of her teammates as well so really cool to see the Aussies are pretty good here.”

Under 23 Men

2 Alastair CHRISTIE-JOHNSTON (AUS) +1:36
3 Jordan LOUIS (AUS) +2:12

“It feels really good. It is good to back up my Australian TT title in January. It was a good day out,” Magennis explained having also won the national title earlier in the year.

“I will hopefully try and get up the road early and give myself a head start with the climbing and hopefully it is windy so it will split up a bit,” he added of his plan for the road race on Sunday.

Under 19 Women

Australian Champion Francesca Sewell continued a dream start to her first year in the under 19 category with a convincing win and her first Oceania title.

1 Francesca SEWELL (AUS)
2 Catelyn TURNER (AUS) +15
3 Henrietta CHRISTIE (NZL) +35

Under 19 Men

New Zealand swept the podium with under 19 individual pursuit world record holder Finn Fisher-Black storming home to continue his strong start to 2019.

2 Laurence PITHIE (NZL) +23
3 Alexander WHITE (NZL) +38