Orica-Scott have confirmed a largely unchanged 10-rider women’s roster for the 2018 season. Jolien D’hoore, who won 12 races this season – more than any other rider – and Tour de l’Ardeche winner Lucy Kennedy are the team’s only new signings. World time trial champion Annemiek van Vleuten and Amanda Spratt are among those that have remained with the Australian outfit.
With 10, the roster has one fewer rider than was fielded this season. Rachel Neylan is off to the new Movistar team and Katrin Garfoot heads back to Australia to race as she prepares for the Commonwealth Games next year. Georgia Baker will not return to the team after being forced to stop racing due to heart problems that arose during the Ovo Energy Women’s Tour in June.
Orica-Scott had one of their most successful seasons in 2017 with 19 victories throughout the year. Van Vleuten was a large contributor to the team’s success, taking 10 wins, including La Course, the Boels Rentals Ladies Tour, and two stages of the Giro Rosa in the team’s colours. The Dutch rider was also crowned time trial world champion in Bergen and finished the season atop the world overall rankings, and second to her compatriot Anna van der Breggen in the WorldTour rankings.
Garfoot, Spratt and Sarah Roy also stood on the top steps for the Australian team, putting them third in the world rankings and fourth in the team classification of the WorldTour rankings. The signing of D’hoore, who is currently racing on the track, is a major boon to the team’s ambitions and combined with Van Vleuten the team will be hoping to improve on this season.
“We are super excited about our team line-up for 2018,” said sports director Gene Bates. “Certainly on paper, there is a huge amount of potential and talent, but we also know that that doesn’t always equate to wins in races so we are mindful that it is going to take a lot of hard work to reach our goals.
“To have two new riders in Jolien and Lucy is great for the team and really bolsters our strengths and we will certainly make them feel welcome. It is also really nice to be able to retain eight of the same riders from 2017. This year was very successful for us, one of our most successful ever, so to carry the core of the group over into next season and introduce two new riders into that mix is something we are really looking forward to seeing in action.”
Orica-Scott women for 2018: Jessica Allen, Jenelle Crooks, Jolien D'hoore, Grace Elvin, Lucy Kennedy, Alexandra Manly, Sarah Roy, Amanda Spratt, Annemeik van Vleuten, Georgia Williams