By Sharon PayneFor Australian national cross country champion Chris Jongewaard the best part of this weekend's race in Adelaide will be not travelling to another city. For the first time in his mountain bike career the 28 year-old will race on his home turf at the new Eagle Mountain Bike Park.
"It's going to be a different feeling waking up and heading to a race from your own home," said Jongewaard.
"This is break through for Adelaide," he said. "Every day it's becoming a high class cycling city."
Jongewaard recently returned to Australia after racing the World Cups, World Championships and the mountain bike test event in Beijing. He is the highest ranked Australian in 26th position with 643 points.
Team-mate, Sid Taberlay from Tasmania will also start his Australian series assault in Adelaide after winning the overall series last season. Lining up will be Canberra's Dylan Cooper after claiming second in last year's season and competing at the World Championships he could be a threat.
Adelaide's Shaun Lewis will not compete this Saturday but instead is working to raise enough money for his overseas campaign for season. His counterpart with the same name from Canberra is on the start list and is expected to challenge the leaders.
Last season's early leader, Aiden Lefmann is expected to put the pressure on early in the six or seven lap race along with young under 23 series winner Cal Britten from Victoria.