The Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships will be hosted in the picturesque Gippsland Lakes region for the first time in the event’s history.
The Championships has attracted a quality field of more than 400 riders from around Australia including Olympic medallists, world and national champions, plus a few who weren’t even on a bike when the 2017 Nationals were held on the Gold Coast.
Adelaide’s Jane Bode, 59, is one such rider who twelve months ago wasn’t even riding socially. Now she will line up in the time trial on the opening day of racing in Metung on Thursday 18 October.
“A good friend and work colleague of mine who is also a Masters rider encouraged me to do a Cycling Australia ‘She Rides-Confidence’ course which I enjoyed,” said Bode, who was keeping fit through social running and personal training, but was eager for a new challenge.
“Then I joined the Skinny Lattes Women’s Cycling Club in Adelaide. They have been so supportive, offer a wide range of rides and also races, as well as just being a great bunch of women.”
Following this, Bode participated in the ‘First Principles’ training group for April’s Clare Classic which she believes took her cycling to another level.
“This improved my fitness, confidence and skills as a rider,” she explained. “From there I rode in the CycloSportif Series and then was fortunate to be offered the opportunity to be mentored by and ride with another Masters cyclist, Sharee Faulkner.
“She checks in on me every day, asks me how my program is going and we ride every weekend. She has inspired me to be the best that I can be and has helped me in all facets of the sport.”
Initially not planning to enter the Road Nationals until 2019, Bode bit the bullet and entered the 2018 edition in Gippsland to test her mettle against the best.
“It certainly is a big decision and to be honest, given I have only been riding since the start of this year and training since June,” she revealed. “My goals are to finish, not fall off, have fun and to do the very best I can, given my limited experience.”
“But I entered to gain experience and to gauge where I need to be if I was to be competitive. This has also given me a goal to work towards and to get an idea of the training required.”
While Bode is enjoying her new challenge and her goals for the Nationals are set, she feels the support from the Masters cycling community and the opportunities provided is the real victory.
“Masters cycling offers something for everyone, and it is great to be around like-minded and positive people,” she added. “I was attracted to the diversity that masters cycling offers – from social rides to competition.
“I needed a challenge and a change but lacked support to do it. Master’s cycling has undoubtedly provided those opportunities for me.
2018 Simon Anderson Consultants Masters Road National Championships
One of the attractions of cycling is its social and competitive aspects as a sport, and partners and Perth cyclists Amanda Nabi and Andrew Ballam who have discovered life together both on and off the bike.
The pair will make a 3,000km trek to contest their first ever Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships when the 2018 edition is held in Victoria’s Gippsland Lakes region.
“We have talked in past years about doing Masters Nationals, but it hasn’t fitted into the plans so far,” said Andrew. “This year we have both trained hard through the winter to be ready for the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Varese, so we thought that we would make use of that fitness and give Nationals a go.”
At the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships, Amanda claimed the silver in the women’s 40-44 category, while also claiming sixth in the road race.
“Amanda had some success in Varese winning the silver medal and backing that up with sixth. I am riding as well as I have for some years, but didn’t achieve anything in Varese worth writing home about,” he joked.
“After Worlds, we spent a bit of time holidaying, but that also involved riding some of the iconic climbs in the Dolomites. All of our holidays involve bikes, and the trip to Gippsland will no doubt be a part holiday as well!”
The pair will line up in all three 2018 Championship races, with Andrew hoping to post some strong all-around results.
“I like the fact that the Nationals offers competition across three disciplines. I like to describe myself as a ‘jack of all trades’, so the three event format should suit me,” he said, adding “We’re both active racers, racing locally on the DOME Coffees Cycling Team, and we both still ride in open categories. It’s going to be nice to see how we fair against fields of our age on the national stage. Amanda will be targeting podiums, particularly in the ITT.”
Moreover, while the pair is very focused on their cycling, they are proud and very active members of the South Perth Cycling Club, sitting on the club management committee.
“We ride on the DOME Coffees Cycling Team, but we are both very proud South Perth Rouleurs (SPR),” Andrew explained. “Our team has a very close association with the club, with most riders also being members of the SPR.
“SPR is the biggest club in WA with more than 400 members. The club has organised rides every day of the week, and there is something for everyone, from beginners through to A-grade racers.”
Find out more --> www.southperthrouleurs.com.au!
The East Gippsland region of Victoria will host the Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships from 18-21 October.
Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships
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The Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships will take place over challenging terrain in one of the southern-most areas of Australia, the picturesque Gippsland Lakes region, however the distance is no barrier for a group of cyclists from Cairns who will be making the 3,000km trek to the start line.
A crew of seven from the Cairns Cycling Club, including Damien Ingram (MAS4) and Gary Haydon (MAS5), will line up across the three days in the road race, time trial and criterium.
For Gary Haydon, who will contest the Masters 5 division, it comes after two straight seasons of lining up in one of Australia’s toughest races, the Melbourne to Warrnambool.
“Last year, it was a great buzz of competing on the Commonwealth Games course in such a lovely part of Australia,” said Haydon. “With no Melbourne to Warrnambool in 2018, it made sense to do this event again and experience what I’m told is another lovely part of Australia.”
The Championships kicks off on Thursday 18 October with the individual time trials in Metung, followed by the road races on Friday 19 and Saturday 20 October in Swan Reach. The Championships conclude on Sunday 21 October with the criteriums in Paynesville.
“I finished the road race and criterium in a reasonable position in both, so I am looking to improve on them this year,” added Haydon.
For Damien Ingram, the Masters Nationals is a logical progression from the club and regional scene.
“Cairns members ride together regularly and participate in numerous events at both club and state level as a regional team,” said Ingram who will line up in the Masters 4 category. “However, as the state and national level events are absent in the Far North, it requires us to look afar to compete at this level.
“The Masters Nationals presents the opportunity to test ourselves both terrain and age group. Also, October is a fantastic time of year for us here in the Far North, providing perfect weather with an appropriate lead-in to train.
“The southern climate is always a little shock to the system but the annual pilgrimage to these southern events, has us becoming acclimatised.”
So what is it about the Cairns Cycling Club that has this crew so motivated to travel and race together?
“It is a nice country club in Far North Queensland, and now the home of the Tour of the Tropics also known as TOTT,” added Haydon. “The club has a good mixture of criterium, and road races and racing numbers are excellent.
“Quite often we pick up an NRS rider training in the region, trying to escape the southern winter, who will enter the races and give us all a touch-up.”
Simon Anderson Consultants 2018 Masters Road National Championships
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The 2018 Cycling Australia Masters Road National Championships will be hosted in the picturesque Gippsland Lakes region for the first time in the event’s history.
The towns of Metung, Swan Reach and Paynesville will play host to more than 500 of Australia’s best masters cyclists as they battle for the coveted green and gold national champions jerseys in the time trial, road race and criterium across four days of racing.
Speaking at the event launch in Paynesville on Tuesday, East Gippsland Shire Council Mayor Cr Joe Rettino said the Championships will be a highlight of the region’s events calendar.
“We are thrilled to host this year’s Championships,” Cr Rettino said. "Council recognises East Gippsland ticks many boxes for competitive and recreational cyclists and our terrain and climate means cycling can be enjoyed year-round.
“Cycling events in our region have been growing in popularity year-on-year and we are working to grow East Gippsland’s reputation as a premier cycling location. I look forward to showcasing our region to avid cyclists from across the nation later this year.”
Minister for Sport John Eren is proud to help bring the 2018 Cycling Australia Masters Road National Championships to Gippsland for the first time.
"Events like these not only deliver great sporting outcomes but create local jobs, attract visitors and keep businesses busy,” Minister Eren said.
“The Gippsland Lakes region is made for events like these, strong local support will no doubt take this great event up a gear.”
CEO Steve Drake is delighted that Cycling Australia has partnered with Cycling Victoria and the East Gippsland Shire Council to deliver the Masters Championships.
“Cycling has shared a long and prosperous relationship with the East Gippsland Shire, and we are excited to be able to bring the event to such a beautiful part of Victoria,” Drake said.
“We are certain that our best masters cyclists will appreciate the spectacular courses and racing environment, while also enjoying the local hospitality and region during the Championships.”
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