Callum Scotson (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) completed a three-peat of U23 Australian time trial tiles with a seven second win over teammate Sam Jenner. The win was also Scotson’s fourth straight at the national titles following a junior win in 2014.
As defending champion, the pressure was on Scotson but the 21-year-old duly stepped up and delivered on his debut for his new team. Removed from the hot seat by Jenner, the time of Jason Lea (Bennelong-Swiss Wellness) held up for third place.
Scotson's winning margin was far closer than his 20-second victory in 2016 and 59-second margin last year. The 45km/h average ride over the 29.3km out and back course though was enough for the win and confirmation of his status as Australia's premier rider against the clock.
"My last year in the U23's and I'd won it the last two years so there was a little bit of pressure. It is really a relief when you get across the line," Scotson said.
"I know what time trials are like and you can’t count anyone out. Two year's ago I wasn't in the favourites at all when I first won it. I knew there would be people pushing me and I would have to get everything out of me to win."
The win also gives Scotson a final shot at completing the U23 time trial and road race achieved by the likes of brother Miles Scotson, Jack Bobridge and Rohan Dennis. With the road race cut in length due to the forecasted 39 degrees on Saturday, Scotson admitted the heat isn't his ‘forte' but believes it will favour the fit riders in the bunch.
Teammate Jenner starts the road race as the defending champion and likewise was not fazed by the high weather forecast or the slight change to the course. The 20-year-old explained he starts in a good position "mentally and physically, adding, "I'll have to play my cards and see how it goes."
With Standard and Harry Sweeney, the quartet will start Saturday's race as favourites for the green and gold jersey.
The hot seat occupiers
The early time had been set by Alastair Hirsch, 18th by the end of the day, before James Whelan (InForm Tineli) better his time to move into the hot seat. Cyrus Monk (Drapac EF p/b Cannondale Holistic Development Team) was the next rider to take the provisional lead, posting the first sub-40 minute ride. It was then Lea's turn to post a new fast time, shaving two seconds off Monk's effort and all but securing a medal.
Jenner was the fifth new leader and with the numbers of riders to finish declining by the minute, Scotson emerged as the only rider capable of beating his time. 2017 silver medallist Robert Stannard posted eighth and was then quickly followed by Scotson, slipping to ninth. The win also secured four straight for the Scotson's after Miles' victory in 2015.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Callum Scotson (Aus) Mitchelton-BikeExchange||0:39:21|
|2||Samuel Jenner (Aus) Mitchelton-BikeExchange||0:00:07|
|3||Jason Lea (Aus) Bennelong SwissWellness||0:00:14|
|4||Cyrus Monk (Aus) Drapac EF p/b Cannondale Holistic Development Team||0:00:16|
|5||Liam Magennis (Aus) Drapac EF p/b Cannondale Holistic Development Team||0:00:36|
|6||James Whelan (Aus) InForm Tineli||0:00:45|
|7||Rohan Wight (Aus)||0:00:49|
|8||Sam Welsford (Aus) Australian Cycling Academy||0:00:51|
|9||Robert Stannard (Aus) Mitchelton-BikeExchange||0:00:52|
|10||Alex Porter (Aus) Bennelong SwissWellness||0:01:18|
|11||Alastair Christie-Johnston (Aus) Bennelong SwissWellness||0:01:19|
|12||Thomas McDonald (Aus)|
|13||Sebastian Berwick (Aus)||0:01:42|
|14||Patrick Burt (Aus) Drapac EF p/b Cannondale Holistic Development Team||0:01:54|
|15||Riley Hart (Aus)|
|16||Angus Lyons (Aus) mobius BridgeLane||0:01:56|
|17||Reece Tucknott (Aus)||0:01:57|
|18||Alastair Hirsch (Aus)||0:02:17|
|19||Jordan Villani (Aus)||0:02:19|
|20||Alexander Evans (Aus) mobius BridgeLane||0:02:20|
|21||Harrison Sweeny (Aus) Mitchelton-BikeExchange||0:02:33|
|22||Campbell Jones (Aus) Oliver's Real Food Racing||0:02:41|
|23||Jonathan Noble (Aus) Brisbane Continental Cycling Team||0:02:42|
|24||Jarrad Drizners (Aus) SASI||0:03:03|
|25||Kelland O'Brien (Aus) Australian Cycling Academy||0:03:14|
|26||Patrick Kennedy (Aus)||0:03:27|
|27||Lachlan Darch (Aus) Van D'am Racing||0:03:29|
|28||Jordan Louis (Aus) St George Continental Cycling Team||0:03:34|
|29||Tom Gough (Aus)||0:03:48|
|30||Brandon Conway (Aus)||0:04:22|
|31||Thomas Jones (Aus)||0:04:27|
|32||Sebastian Presley (Aus)||0:04:33|
|33||David Randall (Aus) Van D'am Racing||0:04:37|
|34||Conor Leahy (Aus)||0:04:38|
|35||Matthew De Vroet (Aus) Van D'am Racing||0:04:39|
|36||Connor Sens (Aus)||0:05:37|
|37||Iven Bennett (Aus) Van D'am Racing||0:05:44|
|38||Shaun Falzarano (Aus)||0:07:00|
|39||Ethan Egglestone (Aus) Van D'am Racing||0:07:06|
|40||Kaydon Jeffreys (Aus)||0:07:07|
|41||Liam Pino (Aus)||0:09:09|
|42||Jake Van Der Vliet (Aus)||0:09:19|
|43||Darcy Whittaker (Aus)||0:09:34|
|DNF||Macgregor Carter (Aus)|
|DNS||Oliver Smith (Aus) Brisbane Continental Cycling Team|
|DNS||Ian Herman (Aus)|
|DNS||Kaden Groves (Aus) St George Continental Cycling Team|