Dennis takes Australian Under 23 RR title in dominant Jayco AIS display
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Saturday, January 7, 2012

Dennis takes Australian Under 23 RR title in dominant Jayco AIS display

by Shane Stokes at 6:15 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, National Championships
Beats Sheppard and Watson to take first nationals jersey

Rohan DennisJayco AIS rider Rohan Dennis grabbed the Australian champion’s jersey in the under 23 road race in Buninyong today, beating Jayco Victoria Institute of Sport rider Eric Sheppard to the line at the end of the 122.4 kilometre event.

The duo settled things in a two-up sprint after breaking clear of the peloton with three laps remaining. They worked well together to open up a big lead, finishing one minute and three seconds ahead of Dennis’ team-mate Calvin Watson, who had also been in the move. Another Jayco AIS rider, Jay McCarthy, was fourth.

Tour de l’Avenir runner-up Dennis has been banging on the door of a nationals victory for a long time; today marked the time when everything came together perfectly for him. “I have been working for this for a few years now and it is the first national road race I have ever won,” the 21 year old said. “I can't really put it in words right now - I am just overwhelmed really.

“I would say this win is right up there. I have never actually been on the podium at a national road race so it is a great feeling to have my first time on the podium in first place,” he continued. “With about five laps to go I was feeling a little bit sore, but I started to feel a little better as our gap increased along the last couple of laps.

“Eric and myself were both cramping a little in the final stages, but I ended up pulling it off.”

The race saw an early move by Queensland's Brian McLeod, Victoria's Rhys Gillett and Canberra's Tim Cameron, who went clear on the first climb, opened a lead of nearly two minutes and remained clear for seven of the twelve laps. The Jayco AIS peloton managed to bring them back, then the eventual medal-winners forged clear at the start of the third last lap.

Watson lost his chance of gold when he cracked on the penultimate climb. Dennis and Sheppard then pushed on ahead and settled things in the sprint.

Rather than being disappointed, Sheppard took the positives from his ride. “It was a hard race out there, but this is probably my best result ever,” he said. “From three or four to go, I noticed there were splits in the bunch and so I knew it was a perfect time to go.

“In the final few laps, Rohan and I were both cramping up and thinking the same thing, that is hoping the other guy didn't hit, didn't take off. But I gave it my all and full credit to Rohan.”

Rohan DennisWatson was also satisfied with what he got out of the race. “I am over the moon, I didn't really expect to be in this situation and being in the medals at all, it's just amazing,” he said. “We knew that we would have to assert ourselves in the race and that our strength in numbers would help us.

“We really took the race by the head but the team rode really strongly, particularly Pat Lane who was tremendous on the front for about seven laps.”

Next up for Dennis is Tuesday’s time trial championships. Before then, Australia’s elite men will scrap it out in their road race tomorrow.

Mars Cycling Australia national road race championships:

Under 23 Men’s road race, Buninyong:

1, Rohan Dennis (SA) 3 hours 4 mins 41 secs
2, Eric Sheppard (Vic) at 2 secs
3, Calvin Watson (Vic) at 1 min 3 secs
4, Jay McCarthy (QLD) same time
5, Ben Grenda (Tas) at 1 min 12 secs
6, Blake Hose (Vic)
7, Stephen Hall (Wa)
8, Samuel Davis (Wa)
9, Luke Fetch (Vic)
10, Stuart Smith (Vic)
11, Mitchell Lovelock-Fay (ACT)
12, Matthew Clark (Vic)
13, Oliver Kent-Spark (Vic)
14, Lachlan Morton (NSW)
15, Michael Crosbie (Vic) all same time
16, Alex Clements (Tas) at 1 min 15 secs
17, Thomas Palmer (ACT) at 1 min 45 secs
18, Phillip Mundy (SA) at 2 mins 25 secs
19, Stuart Mulhern (QLD)
20, Campbell Flakemore (Tas)
21, Kevin Hawes (NSW) all same time
22, Alex Wohler (QLD) at 5 mins 30 secs
23, James Mowatt (Vic) at 6 mins 19 secs
24, Sam McCallum (Vic)
25, Trenton Day (NSW) both same time
26, Scott Mcphee (SA) at 7 mins 34 secs
27, Trent Morey (Vic)
28, James Szollosi (QLD)
29, Timothy Cameron (ACT)
30, Jack Haig (Vic)
31, Nathan Elliott (Vic)
32, Damien Wright (QLD) all same time
33, Robbie Hucker (Vic) at 7 mins 37 secs
34, Craig Hutton (NSW) at 10 mins 9 secs
35, Lachlan Doak (Vic) at 10 mins 44 secs
36, Danny Pulbrook (Tas)
37, Nicholas Woods (NSW) both same time
38, Luke Ockerby (Tas) at 10 mins 47 secs
39, Justin Vanstone (QLD)
40, Brian Mcleod (QLD) both same time
41, Jamie Lacey (QLD) at 10 mins 49 secs
42, Jordan Davies (NSW) at 14 mins 49 secs
43, Merlin Spranz (SA) at 19 mins 25 secs
44, Aaron Eynaud (Vic) at 20 mins 28 secs
45, Rhys Gillett (Vic) at 20 mins 31 secs
46, Stephen Bomball (ACT) at 22 mins 54 secs


Damien Howson (SA)
Nick Aitken (Vic)
Aaron Donnelly (NSW)
Jordan Kerby (QLD)
Patrick Lane (Vic)
Benjamin Hill (NSW)
Brenton Jones (Vic)
Jared Triggs (NSW)
Lachlan Ambrose (SA)
James Boal (Vic)
Shaun O'Callaghan (Vic)
Andrew Martin (Wa)
Darcy Woolley (Vic)
Mitchell Cooper (Vic)
Douglas Freeburn (QLD)
Harry Carpenter (SA)
Joshua Apolony (NSW)
Cameron Bayly (SA)
Samuel Beveridge (Vic)
Joshua Blake (SA)
Aaron Blomeley (Vic)
Peter Braunsteins (Vic)
James Butler (Vic)
Trent Carman (QLD)
Alex Carver (NSW)
Timothy Chadwick (Vic)
Taylor Charlton (QLD)
Andrew Christie (Vic)
Luke Collyer (NSW)
Alistair Crameri (Vic)
Sam Crome (Vic)
Steven Del Gallo (Vic)
Pat Drapac (Vic)
Jay Dutton (NSW)
Callum Fagg (Tas)
Luca Giacomin (Vic)
Julian Hamill (NSW)
Billy Hutton (NSW)
Cameron Ivory (NSW)
Jarryd Jones (Vic)
Robert Kell (NSW)
Matthew Lane (Vic)
Scott Law (NSW)
Alastair Loutit (NSW)
Daniel McDonald (NSW)
Macauley Mulhull (NSW)
Conor Murtagh (Vic)
David Parsons (SA)
Joshua Prete (QLD)
James Rendall (NSW)
David Schilg (NSW)
Todd Schintler (Vic)
Clive Silcock (Vic)
Nicholas Smith (Vic)
Joel Stearnes (Tas)
Fergus Sully (Vic)
George Tansley (SA)
Josh Taylor (NSW)
Angus Tobin (NSW)
Alex Wong (NSW)
Peter Wood (Vic)
Adam Allen (QLD)
Luke Davison (NSW)
David Edwards (QLD)
Jack Beckinsale (NSW)
Samuel Spokes (NSW)
Mitchell Codner (NSW)
Daniel O'Keefe (NSW)
Ivan Michelin-Beard (ACT)
Liam Dove (Vic)
Stefan Imberger (Vic)
Nicholas Dougall (QLD)
Blaise Bourke (Vic)
Ben Hilleard (Vic)
Brendan Johnston (NSW)
Jackson Law (NSW)
Jack Matthews (Tas)
Ian Richards (QLD)
Chris Zucchet (Vic)
Jarrod Coveney (NSW)
Ryan Macanally (QLD)

Sprint Classification:

1, Rhys Gillett (Vic) 15 pts
2, Brian McLeod (QLD) 13
3, Timothy Cameron (ACT) 7
4, Eric Sheppard (Vic) 4
5, Calvin Watson (Vic) 4
6, Rohan Dennis (SA) 4
7, Luke Ockerby (Tas) 3
8, Nicholas Dougall (QLD) 2
9, Jay Mccarthy (QLD) 1
10, Samuel Spokes (NSW) 1

KOM Classification:

1, Brian McLeod (QLD) 18 pts
2, Rhys Gillett (Vic) 17
3, Rohan Dennis (SA) 8
4, Timothy Cameron (ACT) 6
5, Calvin Watson (Vic) 4
6, Eric Sheppard (Vic) 2
7, Jay Mccarthy (QLD) 2



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