Durbridge won in 2012 in his first attempt at the elite title at the age of 20, ahead of Cameron Meyer and Michael Rogers.
According to the Ballarat Courier, Durbridge had been attending a photo shoot for the publication with new Orica GreenEdge teammate Michael Matthews, with the pair riding back to their accommodation. On the way, Durbridge hit a pot hole on Sturt Street, Ballarat, just off tomorrow's time trial course and hit the ground after falling over his handlebars.
Durbridge tweeted after the incident:
"Heading back to hotel. Hit a [sic] epic hole in the ground then down on my arse. Puncture and broken saddle and some skin. #Notwhatyouwant"
Just last week, he took out the Portarlington race of the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic in an effort which highlighted some of his time trialling form as he soloed away from breakaway companions Kristian House (Rapha Condor / JLT) and James Oram (Gray's Online / New Zealand) just ahead of the bell lap to maintain his advantage and allow time to celebrate as he crossed the finish line.
He told Cyclingnews at the race that the defence of his time trial title was his "focus for January."
Durbridge was also unlucky just ahead of the warm-up criterium at last year's Tour Down Under, suffering a mild concussion after he collided with teammate Matt Goss.