Medals to ICC riders at the Australian Championships

Medals to ICC riders at the Australian Championships in Ballarat Victoria, 2018.

During the first week of January 2018, many of our riders headed down to Ballarat to participate in the Australian Championships. During the week, riders chased gold in the Criterium, Time Trial and Road Race.

The first event was the criterium held on Wednesday 3rd January 2018 around the main street of Ballarat. Chloe Heffernan was up against some of the best female riders in the country, and several world class professional riders. Chloe participated in the U/23 which raced against the senior women. What a race, right from the start riders were attacking each other right to the final lap. Chloe rode a great race and was up with the front runners with about 5 laps to go. The top professionals caused a split in the field and Chloe just missed out on making the front group. It was a fantastic effort by Chloe, and showed great signs for the road season ahead.

The next race was the Masters Men 180+ riders criterium.  In this race we had Mark Morgan, Robert Calladine, Dominique Rideaux and Terry Wall.  In this race there were several teams from Bendigo, Footscray & Port Adelaide. After many attacks and a good lead out by Dominique and Mark, the team ended up with the Gold Medal.  Australian Champions to the Illawarra Cycle Club.

In the U/23 Aiden Kampers spent most of the time on the front of the bunch, attacking out of every turn and driving the pace. He rode a solid race in support of his team mate and eventual winner, Cameron Scott.  Splendid work Aiden, and an excellent result considering all the work you did.  10th place.

In the senior event of the day, Joel Walsh of GPM was up against some of the top professional riders in the world. The race was controlled by Mitchelton Scott throughout the entire race, supporting and leading out their key sprinter, Caleb Ewan. Caleb was too strong in the end, taking out the national crit title for the 3rd time in a row.  Luke stayed with the leading pack right to the end and finished strongly. A great result considering the talent on display.

Our next race took us out to the hills of Buninyong. The race against the clock.

In this race we had Shari & Chloe Heffernan, Mitchell Wright, Men’s and ladies’ masters’ team.

Shari set out first in the U/19 and was right up there with the best times at the half way mark. The ride back to the finish was extremely tough with no flats, only undulating roads. Some climbs were quite long, and in the heat, it was taking its toll on many of the riders.  Shari rode strong in this event and came in 13th place.

Mitchell Wright participated in the U/19 men’s division and rode extremely well to finish just over 30 seconds behind the gold medal winner. Mitch came in 3rd.

In the ladies’ team consisting of Kirsten Bennett, Deb Coulls, Nicole Nugara and Josephine Clark, they were flying in the teams’ section to the ½ way point.  They were riding great as a team and only lost a few seconds on the return leg. This was enough to be overtaken by the eventual winners. The ladies had won a silver medal in the Australian Masters Time Trial. Another great achievement from our ladies.

The next group who took off was in the team time trial was Mark Morgan, Dominique Rideaux, Robert Calladine and Terry Wall. At the 7km mark we had a 7 second lead. At the turnaround, we were now behind by 17 seconds. With a lot of climbing to take us back to the finish line, and together with the intense heat of the day, we managed to hold onto 2nd place, taking out a silver medal to add to the Australian title. The Masters Men came home with a gold and silver medal, and more importantly an Australian jersey.

In the road race Chloe and Aiden took part. Both races had their starting times and distances changed due to the heat in Ballarat. Chloe was going to have a gruelling day ahead of her. With many world class professionals and the U/23 racing together, this was a case of just getting to the end and surviving. Chloe managed to complete 8 out of the 9 laps. This achievement was quite outstanding considering she has been a top track rider for many years. Her effort in this ride led to selection and participation in the World Tour race, Ladies Tour down under.  We wish you all the best Chloe.

In the U/23 men Aiden was once again right up there challenging for the lead on all the climbs.  He is an exceptional climber. Aiden finished the race with the main peloton.

Chloe also had her first race with her new team Sydney Uni Staminade which were lucky enough to get a start at the Women’s TDU. She unfortunately hadn’t recovered well from her Nationals campaign and had to withdraw early. It was a fantastic experience for her. Time to rest up as both girls have been selected to compete for NSW for the Track Nationals in Brisbane in 3 weeks’ time.

It was great to see so many ICC riders down in Ballarat representing the Illawarra Cycle Club.

On behalf of the President and all members, we congratulate our medallist’s and wish Shari & Chloe all the best at the Track Nationals.