Sydney Italian festival goes cycling

The Sydney Italian Festival will feature some of Australia's leading cycling champions when they...

The Sydney Italian Festival will feature some of Australia's leading cycling champions when they compete in a festival of cycling at Kempt Field in Hurstville on Saturday, June 2, 2007.

Hurstville City Council purposely built Kempt Field for major cycling events and was opened in 1993 when World and Olympic champion Jan Ullrich defied the best cyclists in the world to win a 40-kilometre criterium event. Ullrich, who later won the Tour de France, is just one of many international competitors that have won on this open but challenging circuit that is just 552 metres in circumference.

Many races have been beamed nationally and internationally from Kempt Field since 1993 with the opening stage of the internationally acclaimed Commonwealth Bank Cycle Classic held there on six occasions.

Hurstville City Council along with the Italian Trade Commission and cycling importers from Italy are combining to ensure a successful event and are proud to have their event coinciding with the Giro d'Italia finale.

Steven Wooldridge, four-time World champion and Athens' Olympic Games gold medallist, is delighted with the news that a feature race will be staged at Kempt Field. "Italy and cycling is such a perfect fit. I have enjoyed my time racing in Italy and no body likes their cycling more than the Italian community," said Wooldridge. "I remember well racing against the best stars in world cycling and it is such a tough course but so great for the spectators."

Spectators are able to witness the entire circuit and the speed of the race ensures non-stop action from the start of the race.

Phill Bates AM, a prominent business person in the community, is one of Australia's leading promoters and will ensure maximum safety for spectators and cyclists. Bates has been staging major cycling events since the seventies and was responsible for staging the Commonwealth Bank Cycle Classic for 19 years. He also has staged World Cup events, the famous Tour de Snowy and has been chairman of World Track Titles. For further information contact Phill Bates at

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