Monday, 10 February 2020

As the summer of cycling wraps for another year, KordaMentha Real Estate is proud to have again sponsored men’s and women’s teams in both the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and Race Torquay, and the Jayco Herald Sun Tour (Sun Tour).

The unpredictable weather during this year’s Sun Tour, including rain and strong cross-winds, threw up some tough challenges for the riders. Racing against some of the world’s best, the KordaMentha Real Estate Australian National Teams held their own with some notable moments and very respectable results. 

Now in its third year as part of the Sun Tour, the women's two-stage race commenced on 5 February 2020 in Shepparton. Battling through the windy conditions, KordaMentha Real Estate cyclists Jessica Pratt, Josie Talbot and Georgie Whitehouse featured in a Stage 1 break.

Stage 2 of the women’s race was shortened due to safety concerns over the 30km descent from Falls Creek. Rain and aggressive competition nonetheless contributed to a crash at the back of the pack, momentarily taking down three riders, including KordaMentha competitor Catelyn Turner. At the end of the day, our best overall finisher was Jessica Pratt, placing 17th in the field of 75 starters, and the team took out 8th position. With some very young riders in the mix this year, the focus was on teamwork and exposing these emerging athletes to world class racing.

Cycling Australia’s Donna Rae-Szalinski, Endurance Development Coordinator for the Australian Cycling Team, noted the exciting inclusion of under-19 riders, Francesca Sewell and Catelyn Turner, in this year’s team.

“…it was so cool to see them slot straight into a senior, elite race and spend the first sixty km on the front with their team, riding as one, covering moves and getting a great introduction into elite racing”, Donna said.

“This is about their education, this is about giving them an opportunity to perform and see what the elite level is like."

News_200203_Inline_CR-Bike-race_1.jpg

The men’s Sun Tour took riders through five stages from Nagambie, through a series of flat roads and mountainous climbs, back to Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens in the heart of the city. KordaMentha men’s riders Carter Turnbull and David Williams featured strongly in breaks across Stages 3 and 4, respectively, but were unable to hold on. 

Rudy Porter (2nd), Carter Turnbull (7th) and Calan White (8th) all featured in the final Young Rider Classification top ten. Up-and-comer Turnbull also finished 12th in the King of the Mountain Classification, adding to his strong sprint performances at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race. Rudy Porter was our best overall finisher in the Sun Tour, placing 9th, and the KordaMentha Real Estate men’s team finished strong in 5th position.

With a mix of experienced riders and emerging talent, learning from one another and progression were touted as winning takeaways from the world’s oldest professional stage race. KordaMentha Real Estate Partner, Berrick Wilson, said, ‘It is always wonderful to witness the leadership and teamwork displayed by both seasoned athletes and new talent. As they face tough challenges competing against the world’s best, these elite cyclists show immense strength and growth that is both exciting and inspirational.’

Berrick noted, "The summer of cycling requires stamina and endurance. We are so proud of the KordaMentha teams' resilience and their commitment to this great sport." Donna Rae-Szalinski added, “We are grateful to the ongoing support from KordaMentha and look forward to working with them in the future”. 

Photo credits: Con Chronis/Jayco Herald Sun Tour