Video: Von Hoff, Roy, Roper and Ewan take gold medals in Australian criterium championships
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Thursday, January 9, 2014

Video: Von Hoff, Roy, Roper and Ewan take gold medals in Australian criterium championships

by Shane Stokes at 11:09 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results, Video
Sprint finishes settle each race, attention now turns to weekend road races

Steele Von HoffGarmin-Sharp rider Steele Von Hoff blazed in ahead of the field to take the Australian elite criterium championship title in Ballarat today, finishing two seconds ahead of the Avanti riders Anthony Giacoppo and Brenton Jones.

Defending champion Cameron Meyer (Orica GreenEdge) tried to ride clear during the race but was brought back; he finished a further two seconds back in fourth.

“To finally win the national champs on home soil is a really good omen for the rest of the year for me,” said an elated von Hoff, who had helped former champion Giacoppo to his win two years ago.

“I’ve done well in the criteriums in Australia but I’ve never got the breakthrough win until now."

The 2011 champion Jonathan Cantwell and two of his fellow Drapac Pro Cycling riders Robbie Hucker and Adam Phelan fell on the final lap, prompting Giacoppo to attack. Von Hoff and Jones covered it, then the former made his move.

“Up the back straight they went for it and Drapac had a mishap up the top corner and a few of them came down,” he said. “I used to be on the Avanti cycling team so I know how strong they are. I just had to pick that train. You’ve just got to take advantage of that stuff.”

“I got the wheel of Brenton Jones and then AJ [Anthony Giacoppo] in the finish. I just kicked off him and he still ran second so it was fantastic.”

Von Hoff admits that his first year with Garmin Sharp didn’t go to plan. He said that today’s result should set him up for a better season, and he’ll have a chance to build on that in the Santos Tour Down Under. He will be the team’s designated sprinter there.

“I am a confidence rider and when I get a few bad results I start to beat down on myself,” he said, “but then to get a win it just boosts everything.”

Roy, Roper triumph in women’s titles:

Sarah RoyMeanwhile Sarah Roy pulled off a surprise win in the women’s criterium, the Vienne Futuroscope rider sprinting in ahead of Wiggle Honda’s Peta Mullens and Lauren Kitchen (Hitche Products). All three avoided the finishing straight crash which took down the big favourite Annett Edmondson (Orica AIS).

“It’s so exciting, I don’t think I’ve ever won a race in Australia before,” she said. “You have to back yourself but you can’t be too cocky. I just knew I would give it 100% and that’s what I did.”

Apart from Edmondson, Gracie Elvin (Orica AIS) and Chloe Hosking (Roxsolt) also hit the deck early on. Roy said she hoped that the falls were not serious.

“I didn’t see [what happened] but I have heard Nettie and Chloe are down. I really hope they are ok, my heart goes out to them,” she said. “It’s never good to crash at such high speeds like that.”

Roy confirmed that she’ll also do the road race on Saturday, but said that her expectations are limited. “I’ll be out there and giving it 100% but I’m not silly. I know that course is not suited to me. I’ll just soak this up while I can.”

Queensland rider Emily Roper galloped in sixth and took the under 23 women’s gold medal. Rebecca Mackey (WA) and Jessica Munday (SA) were second and third.

Another victory for Ewan:

Caleb EwanIn the under 23 men’s event, up and coming Aussie sprint sensation Caleb Ewan notched up yet another success. The Subaru NSWIS rider, who will turn pro with Orica GreenEdge later this year, finished well clear of South Australia’s Robert McCarthy and Queensland rider Alex Wohler.

“It’s really good for me to get the Australian title. It’s my last year in under 23 and it’s really good to get a win,” he said.

Early on McCarthy’s teammate Harry Carpenter attacked and built a lead of almost half a minute. He was eventually hauled back four laps from the end. A subsequent effort by Samuel Spokes was also reeled in.

Ewan said he played a waiting game. “Coming into the race I was speaking with Brad [McGee] and we agreed I would sit in and take myself out of the race as much as possible to make other people to work. “It forced Avanti to do that because they didn’t have anyone in the break which was perfect for me.

“There was a crash on the bottom [of the course] but the good thing about being a heavily marked person is that a lot of the fighting happens behind you.

“I was in a perfect position coming into the last straight, I was not too far in front and not too far back and it just worked out perfect in the end.”

He said that his buildup for the championships had been centred mainly around Saturday’s Under 23 road race. He said that there are many others who could also take the victory. “We saw Harry Carpenter out all day and it was a really impressive ride,” he said, naming one of them. “He did another really impressive ride yesterday in the time trial so I’m sure he’s going to be really hard to beat.”

Australian criterium championships, Ballarat:

Elite men:

1, Steele Von Hoff (VIC) 44 km in 1:00:55
2, Anthony Giacoppo (WA) at 2 secs
3, Brenton Jones (VIC) same time
4, Cameron Meyer (WA) at 4 secs
5, Michael Fitzgerald (WA)
6, Rico Rogers (VIC)
7, Neil Van Der Ploeg (VIC)
8, Allan Davis (QLD)
9, Craig Hutton (NSW) all same time
10, Darren Lapthorne (VIC) at 8 secs
11, Eric Sheppard (VIC)
12, James Rendall (VIC)
13, Jonathan Bolton (WA)
14, Dominik Dudkiewicz (VIC) all same time
15, Michael Cupitt (ACT) at 13 secs

Elite and Under 23 women:

1, Sarah Roy (NSW) 33 km in 52 mins 55 secs
2, Peta Mullens (VIC)
3, Lauren Kitchen (NSW)
4, Lizzie Williams (VIC)
5, Chloe McConville (VIC)
6, Emily Roper (QLD)
7, Jessica Huston (WA) all same time
8, Rebecca Mackey (WA) at 3 secs
9, Kristy Glover (VIC) at 5 secs
10, Jessica Mundy (SA)
11, Beth Duryea (VIC) all same time
12, Lisa Jacobs (VIC) at 8 secs
13, Sophie Mackay (NSW)
14, Cassia Higgs (WA)
15, Rebecca Locke (VIC) all same time

Under 23 award:

1, Emily Roper (QLD)
2, Rebecca Mackey (WA) at 3 secs
3, Jessica Mundy (SA) at 5 secs

Under 23 men:

1, Caleb Ewan (NSW) 33 kms in 46 mins 14 secs
2, Robert-Jon McCarthy (SA)
3, Alex Wohler (QLD)
4, Luke Parker (VIC)
5, Bradley Linfield (WA) all same time
6, Samuel Wood (QLD) at 4 secs
7, Jack Beckinsale (NSW)
8, Patrick Sharpe (NSW)
9, Samuel Spokes (NSW) all same time
10, Ayden Toovey (NSW) at 6 secs
11, Jack McCulloch (NSW) at 8 secs
12, Sam Sautelle (ACT)
13, Tyler Spurrell (VIC)
14, Michael Hale (VIC)
15, Nicholas Schultz (QLD) all same time


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