Tour Down Under
Oscar Onley (dsm-firmenich PostNL) produced a sensational ride to claim victory in Adelaide, as he forced his way through the contenders on the Queen Stage of the race to take his maiden solo professional victory.
It was an attritional final climb up Willunga Hill, making its return to the Australian race for the first time since 2020, but Onley was marking every move and ended up timing his final kick to perfection, winning from a sprint between a group of four in the final – which included former World Champion Julian Alaphilippe.
A fantastic ride by @OscarOnley this morning to claim his maiden WorldTour victory!
What a way to do it on the Queen Stage of the @tourdownunder up Willunga Hill.
Oh and to have the dulcet tones of Phil Liggett over the top of it too…pic.twitter.com/N2OXEBYpDK
— Scottish Cycling (@ScottishCycling) January 20, 2024
The Kelso native paid for his efforts on the final stage to Mount Lofty but did enough to claim fourth place in the general classification; his best result to date in a WorldTour event.
A fantastic week for the Scot, who was joined by teammate Sean Flynn who was working in a support role for the Dutch team. The duo will remain in Australia for a brace of one-day classic races at the Surf Coast Classic and Cadel Evans Road Race this week.
Eleven junior riders made the journey down to Apeldoorn, for the Next Generation Track Meet with riders racing for either the Scotland or Great Britain squads that were in action.
Friday saw the Team Pursuit in action with Scotland’s Junior Male team riding a 4:13 and ending fifth, while the Great Britain squad featuring Elliot Rowe (Fensham Howes MAS Design) claimed the win. The Junior Female British squad featuring three Scots – Arabella Blackburn (Shibden Apex RT), Erin Boothman (Tofauti Everyone Active) and Millie Thomson (Solas Cycling) – came home in third.
There was more success for Rowe across the weekend, claiming victory in the Points Race and scoring a second place in the Madison. Arabella Blackburn followed suit with silver in the Madison as well. While Adam Murray (Glasgow Track RC) was part of the winning British Team Sprint squad.
Overall, it was an excellent experience for the riders with some, such as Anna Birrell (Glasgow Track RC) and Kayla Dinnen (Solas Cycling), making their debut at the international level. Plenty of encouragement for the riders to take as they head into a very hectic 2024.
Thanks to Stephen Smith for the images.
On a lightning quick, dusty track in Spain, Cameron Mason (Cyclocross Reds) inserted a racing interlude into his warm weather training camp, as he took to the start line of Cyclocross World Cup in Benidorm. With heavy training in his legs, the Linlithgow star, who defended his British title in Falkirk last weekend, didn’t enjoy his best day out, coming home in 31st – he won’t be too concerned however with all eyes on the World Championships in a fortnight’s time.
The Emirates Arena played host to the first Scottish National Championships of 2024, with Glasgow Track Racing Club holding the Madison Championships as part of a packed programme of racing during their Grand Prix.
You can read the report from the racing here