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Gallery: 50 days until Tour Down Under

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Simon Gerrans won a record third title in 2014

Simon Gerrans won a record third title in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans celebrates winning stage 1 of the 2014 race

Simon Gerrans celebrates winning stage 1 of the 2014 race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton on the streets of Adelaide during the final day criterium in 2013

The peloton on the streets of Adelaide during the final day criterium in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The 2013 jersey winners get into the champagne

The 2013 jersey winners get into the champagne
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom-Jelte Slagter celebrates his first overall win

Tom-Jelte Slagter celebrates his first overall win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Geraint Thomas in the ochre kersey

Geraint Thomas in the ochre kersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans gets the better of Tom-Jelte Slagter up Willunga Hill but concedes the overall win to the Dutchman

Simon Gerrans gets the better of Tom-Jelte Slagter up Willunga Hill but concedes the overall win to the Dutchman
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Damien Howson and Philippe GIlbert shake hands on the podium after spending 120km in the break together

Damien Howson and Philippe GIlbert shake hands on the podium after spending 120km in the break together
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel thinking how to get this home!

André Greipel thinking how to get this home!
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Bernard Hinault with the podium hostess

Bernard Hinault with the podium hostess
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Takashi Miyazawa tries to hold onto his joey before it hops away

Takashi Miyazawa tries to hold onto his joey before it hops away
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jens Voigt on the attack in 2013

Jens Voigt on the attack in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stuart O'Grady says farewell to the Tour Down Under for the final time

Stuart O'Grady says farewell to the Tour Down Under for the final time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Palm trees flank the peloton on stage 1 of the 2014 TDU

Palm trees flank the peloton on stage 1 of the 2014 TDU
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel is interviewed by former sprint rival Robbie McEwan in 2014

André Greipel is interviewed by former sprint rival Robbie McEwan in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The press surround Simon Gerrans ahead of the fist stage of the 2014 race

The press surround Simon Gerrans ahead of the fist stage of the 2014 race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Marcel Kittel won his first race of the year at the People's Choice Classic

Marcel Kittel won his first race of the year at the People's Choice Classic
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel and Marcel Kittel go head-to-head at the People's Choice Classic

André Greipel and Marcel Kittel go head-to-head at the People's Choice Classic
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel gets a photo of the crowd at the team presentation

André Greipel gets a photo of the crowd at the team presentation
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Van Poppel brothers, Boy and Danny, get a photo with the local wildlife

The Van Poppel brothers, Boy and Danny, get a photo with the local wildlife
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Marcel Kittel trying to get the money shot of a koala

Marcel Kittel trying to get the money shot of a koala
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom-Jelte Slagter seals the 2013 overall win

Tom-Jelte Slagter seals the 2013 overall win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A sun-safe Greg Henderson signs in 2013

A sun-safe Greg Henderson signs in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Race leader Geraint Thomas with a joey

Race leader Geraint Thomas with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Julian Kern the day after a nasty crash in 2013

Julian Kern the day after a nasty crash in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans glances at Alejandro Valverde as they sprint for the win on Willunga Hill in 2012

Simon Gerrans glances at Alejandro Valverde as they sprint for the win on Willunga Hill in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Martin Kohler lets the crowd see his boomerang tattto

Martin Kohler lets the crowd see his boomerang tattto
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Óscar Freire considering his prize for winning in 2012

Óscar Freire considering his prize for winning in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan in 2012

Robbie McEwan in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Óscar Freire wins his first and only Tour Down Under stage

Óscar Freire wins his first and only Tour Down Under stage
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Eddy Merckx with Christian Prudhomme in 2012

Eddy Merckx with Christian Prudhomme in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Its Greg Van Avermaet's turn to pose with a joey

Its Greg Van Avermaet's turn to pose with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alejandro Valverde gets his picture with a joey

Alejandro Valverde gets his picture with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel in his Drizabone raincoat

André Greipel in his Drizabone raincoat
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alejandro Valverde gets the win up Willunga Hill

Alejandro Valverde gets the win up Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Martin Kohler seeks solace in a cold coke after losing the race leader's jersey

Martin Kohler seeks solace in a cold coke after losing the race leader's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom-Jelte Slagter wins in Stirling

Tom-Jelte Slagter wins in Stirling
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Geraint Thomas celebrates his win in 2013

Geraint Thomas celebrates his win in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Andy Schleck didn't to leave without getting a photo with a joey

Andy Schleck didn't to leave without getting a photo with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jordan Kerby doing the UniSA team proud with a solo effort

Jordan Kerby doing the UniSA team proud with a solo effort
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Fans wave the Australian flag as the peloton flies by on the way to Hahndorf

Fans wave the Australian flag as the peloton flies by on the way to Hahndorf
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel and lead up man Greg Henderson celebrate the win in 2013

André Greipel and lead up man Greg Henderson celebrate the win in 2013
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Edvald Boasson Hagen won the 2012 points jersey

Edvald Boasson Hagen won the 2012 points jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alejandro Valverde had to settle for second place overall in 2012

Alejandro Valverde had to settle for second place overall in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans celebrates GreenEdge's first ever overall victory

Simon Gerrans celebrates GreenEdge's first ever overall victory
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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BMC duo Alessandro Ballan and Greg Van Avermaet relax before a stage in 2012

BMC duo Alessandro Ballan and Greg Van Avermaet relax before a stage in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton under the hot Australian sun

The peloton under the hot Australian sun
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel gives his team sponsors prime airtime

André Greipel gives his team sponsors prime airtime
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans toasts ovearll success while Adam Hansen toasts his mountains classification win

Simon Gerrans toasts ovearll success while Adam Hansen toasts his mountains classification win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans attacks on Willunga Hill

Cadel Evans attacks on Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Team Sky and Orica-GreenEdge controlling the peloton

Team Sky and Orica-GreenEdge controlling the peloton
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Diego Ulissi checks on his rivals as he races up Willunga Hill

Diego Ulissi checks on his rivals as he races up Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Richie Porte won the queen stage to Willunga Hill

Richie Porte won the queen stage to Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans and Richie Porte lead a reduced peloton up Willunga Hill for one final time

Cadel Evans and Richie Porte lead a reduced peloton up Willunga Hill for one final time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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There is always a large crowd on Willunga Hill

There is always a large crowd on Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The podium hostesses at the 2014 race

The podium hostesses at the 2014 race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Will Clarke was hardly seen in the peloton due to his aggressive riding for which he was awarded

Will Clarke was hardly seen in the peloton due to his aggressive riding for which he was awarded
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jens Voigt waves to the crowd for one final time

Jens Voigt waves to the crowd for one final time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans wore the Tour Down Under's ochre jersey for the fist time in 2014

Cadel Evans wore the Tour Down Under's ochre jersey for the fist time in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Marcel Sieberg and André Greipel celebrate victory

Marcel Sieberg and André Greipel celebrate victory
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel "cuddles" Evans with a joey (A baby kangaroo)

Cadel "cuddles" Evans with a joey (A baby kangaroo)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel with a joey

André Greipel with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The final stage of the 2014 TDU witnessed this balancing act

The final stage of the 2014 TDU witnessed this balancing act
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Orica-GreenEgde's Simon Gerrans on the start line of the final stage of the 2014 race

Orica-GreenEgde's Simon Gerrans on the start line of the final stage of the 2014 race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jack Haig won the best young rider jersey on his attempt at WorldTour racing

Jack Haig won the best young rider jersey on his attempt at WorldTour racing
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders and staff from Ag2r-La Mondiale celebrate getting through the 2014 edition of the race

Riders and staff from Ag2r-La Mondiale celebrate getting through the 2014 edition of the race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The 'royal' Willunga Hill

The 'royal' Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Fränk Schleck at the 2014 race

Fränk Schleck at the 2014 race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jens Voigt waves farewell on the way up Willinga Hill

Jens Voigt waves farewell on the way up Willinga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Of course Jens Voigt got a farewell photo with a joey

Of course Jens Voigt got a farewell photo with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Neil van der Ploeg pops a wheelie up the Corkscrew

Neil van der Ploeg pops a wheelie up the Corkscrew
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Diego Ulissi in the sprinters jersey in 2014

Diego Ulissi in the sprinters jersey in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The future (Caleb Ewan) and past (Robbie McEwan) of Australian sprinting pre-interview

The future (Caleb Ewan) and past (Robbie McEwan) of Australian sprinting pre-interview
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Rick Zabel made his first appearance at the Tour Down Under in 2014

Rick Zabel made his first appearance at the Tour Down Under in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans rides away from Richie Porte on the Corkscrew to take the stage win and leaders jersey

Cadel Evans rides away from Richie Porte on the Corkscrew to take the stage win and leaders jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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An aerial shot of the peloton on the Corkscrew just before Cadel Evans made his move

An aerial shot of the peloton on the Corkscrew just before Cadel Evans made his move
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans signs on for stage 3 of the 2014 TDU

Cadel Evans signs on for stage 3 of the 2014 TDU
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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It was a subdued celebration by Cadel Evans as he won stage 3 of the 2014 TDU

It was a subdued celebration by Cadel Evans as he won stage 3 of the 2014 TDU
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Ag2r-La Mondiale team manager Vincent Lavenu with a joey

Ag2r-La Mondiale team manager Vincent Lavenu with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Marcel Kittel relaxes in the team van before the stage

Marcel Kittel relaxes in the team van before the stage
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans attacks to gain the one second he needed to dispose Cadel Evans of the race lead

Simon Gerrans attacks to gain the one second he needed to dispose Cadel Evans of the race lead
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Australian tifosi offer a helping hand up Willunga Hill

The Australian tifosi offer a helping hand up Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans at the start of the decisive stage to Willunga Hill in 2014

Cadel Evans at the start of the decisive stage to Willunga Hill in 2014
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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UCI president Brian Cookson, multiple world champion and Olympic gold medallist Chris Hoy and Tour de France race organiser Christian Prudhomme

UCI president Brian Cookson, multiple world champion and Olympic gold medallist Chris Hoy and Tour de France race organiser Christian Prudhomme
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tour de France race organiser Christian Prudhomme puts on his Australian hat

Tour de France race organiser Christian Prudhomme puts on his Australian hat
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Japanese national champion Yukiya Arashiro

Japanese national champion Yukiya Arashiro
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans knows he has win number three in the bag at the Tour Down Under

Simon Gerrans knows he has win number three in the bag at the Tour Down Under
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Breakaway companions Axel Domont (Ag2r-La Mondiale) and Cam Wurf (Cannondale)

Breakaway companions Axel Domont (Ag2r-La Mondiale) and Cam Wurf (Cannondale)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Orica-GreenEdge controlling the race for Simon Gerrans

Orica-GreenEdge controlling the race for Simon Gerrans
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Diego Ulissi takes out stage 2 to Stirling

Diego Ulissi takes out stage 2 to Stirling
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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An Australian flag flies in the breeze as the peloton makes it way to Clare

An Australian flag flies in the breeze as the peloton makes it way to Clare
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel adds another stage win to his palmares

André Greipel adds another stage win to his palmares
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel won his first Tour Down Under in 2008

André Greipel won his first Tour Down Under in 2008
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Fans cheer on the peloton

Fans cheer on the peloton
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mark Renshaw enjoying his moment on the podium

Mark Renshaw enjoying his moment on the podium
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Allan Davis gets a stage win

Allan Davis gets a stage win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mark Renshaw in the leader's jersey

Mark Renshaw in the leader's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel wins another sprint with ease

André Greipel wins another sprint with ease
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Yuriy Krivtsov snaps a photo of a joey

Yuriy Krivtsov snaps a photo of a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A fan cheers on the passing peloton

A fan cheers on the passing peloton
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Matt White won a stage in 2005

Matt White won a stage in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Allan Peiper presenting Team Colombia to the press

Allan Peiper presenting Team Colombia to the press
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Adam Hansen makes his own shade devise

Adam Hansen makes his own shade devise
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders untangle their bikes after a minor skirmish

Riders untangle their bikes after a minor skirmish
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Manuel Cardoso wins in one of the ugliest cycling jerseys ever een

Manuel Cardoso wins in one of the ugliest cycling jerseys ever een
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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BMC team owner Andy Rihs in the car

BMC team owner Andy Rihs in the car
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Watch out for kangaroos over the next 19km

Watch out for kangaroos over the next 19km
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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George Hincapie relaxing before a stage in 2010

George Hincapie relaxing before a stage in 2010
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Quickstep team toast Allan Davis' 2009 overall win

The Quickstep team toast Allan Davis' 2009 overall win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Francesco Chicchi celebrates a stage win

Francesco Chicchi celebrates a stage win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Lance Armstrong with a joey

Lance Armstrong with a joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd with the 2008 overall winner André Greipel

Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd with the 2008 overall winner André Greipel
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alberto Contdor's comeback started at the Tour Down Under in 2005 when he won his first professional race

Alberto Contdor's comeback started at the Tour Down Under in 2005 when he won his first professional race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alberto Contdor wasn't used to visiting the podium in 2005

Alberto Contdor wasn't used to visiting the podium in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Lotto team riding for race leader Robbie McEwan

The Lotto team riding for race leader Robbie McEwan
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Matt White wins the stage for Cofidis

Matt White wins the stage for Cofidis
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan celebrates one of his 13 Tour Down Under stage wins

Robbie McEwan celebrates one of his 13 Tour Down Under stage wins
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Johan Vansummeren with Luis Leon Sanchez in 20015

Johan Vansummeren with Luis Leon Sanchez in 20015
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan in the leader's jersey

Robbie McEwan in the leader's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stuart O'Grady with his wife and child before a stage

Stuart O'Grady with his wife and child before a stage
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Australian road race champion Robbie McEwan in 2005

Australian road race champion Robbie McEwan in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan gets a win in the race leader's jersey

Robbie McEwan gets a win in the race leader's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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László Bodrogi

László Bodrogi
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan wins with ease

Robbie McEwan wins with ease
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Kevin Weert studies the road book ahead of a stage in 2005

Kevin Weert studies the road book ahead of a stage in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Johan Vansummeren in 2005 as he rides up Willunga Hill

Johan Vansummeren in 2005 as he rides up Willunga Hill
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stuart O'Grady riding for Cofidis in 2005

Stuart O'Grady riding for Cofidis in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Lampre riders pose with fans

The Lampre riders pose with fans
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jan Kuyckx drops back to the Lotto team car to chat with Hendrick Redant

Jan Kuyckx drops back to the Lotto team car to chat with Hendrick Redant
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A young Filippo "Pippo" Pozzato

A young Filippo "Pippo" Pozzato
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Michael Rogers back in 2005

Michael Rogers back in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Michael Rogers enjoys a trip to the podium

Michael Rogers enjoys a trip to the podium
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Luis Leon Sanchez won the race overall in 2005

Luis Leon Sanchez won the race overall in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Bert Scheirlinckx in 2005

Bert Scheirlinckx in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Gilberto Simoni raced the Tour Down Under in 2005

Gilberto Simoni raced the Tour Down Under in 2005
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan in the 2004 race leader's jersey

Robbie McEwan in the 2004 race leader's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Something has Eddy Merckx laughing

Something has Eddy Merckx laughing
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Graeme Brown covered in sunscreen, signs on in 2011

Graeme Brown covered in sunscreen, signs on in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The podium hostesses strike a pose

The podium hostesses strike a pose
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mark Cavendish the day after crashing signs on

Mark Cavendish the day after crashing signs on
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stuart O'Grady in 2011

Stuart O'Grady in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Garmin-Cervelo and Leopold-Trek in almost matching kits

Garmin-Cervelo and Leopold-Trek in almost matching kits
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Race leader Matt Goss with Mark Cavendish

Race leader Matt Goss with Mark Cavendish
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alessandro Ballan digs deep up the climb

Alessandro Ballan digs deep up the climb
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cameron Meyer gets the win ahead of Thomas De Gendt to set up overall victory

Cameron Meyer gets the win ahead of Thomas De Gendt to set up overall victory
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Romain Feillu gets in on the joey photos

Romain Feillu gets in on the joey photos
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Picture perfect beach for the riders to briefly enjoy

Picture perfect beach for the riders to briefly enjoy
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stefan Denfil looking like a mummy in 2011

Stefan Denfil looking like a mummy in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Eddy Merckx with André Greipel on the podium in 2012

Eddy Merckx with André Greipel on the podium in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Liquigas riders check out who is the favourite for the race

The Liquigas riders check out who is the favourite for the race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Eddy Merckx helps Gert Steegmans cool down in 2012

Eddy Merckx helps Gert Steegmans cool down in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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GreenEdge made its debut at the race in 2012

GreenEdge made its debut at the race in 2012
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Lance Armstrong was given a hero's farewell in 2011. The South Australian government wants it money back now having paid a substantial amount of money to get him to race

Lance Armstrong was given a hero's farewell in 2011. The South Australian government wants it money back now having paid a substantial amount of money to get him to race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Soigneur Cameron Malouf

Soigneur Cameron Malouf
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cameron Meyer on the startline of the final stage in 2011

Cameron Meyer on the startline of the final stage in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cameron Meyer celebrates his overall win in 2011

Cameron Meyer celebrates his overall win in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Sky's Ben Swift and Greg Henderson celebrate the final day win in 2011

Sky's Ben Swift and Greg Henderson celebrate the final day win in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tyler Farrar is next to hold the joey

Tyler Farrar is next to hold the joey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Richie Porte is probably more comfortable handling Tasmanian Tigers than joey's

Richie Porte is probably more comfortable handling Tasmanian Tigers than joey's
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie McEwan led the race for a day in 2011

Robbie McEwan led the race for a day in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A bloodied and bruised Mark Cavendish

A bloodied and bruised Mark Cavendish
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel in rockstar style glasses back in 2011

André Greipel in rockstar style glasses back in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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André Greipel celebrates his overall in 2010

André Greipel celebrates his overall in 2010
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Chris "CJ" Sutton wins the final day stage of the 2010 edition of the race

Chris "CJ" Sutton wins the final day stage of the 2010 edition of the race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans in the most aggressive jersey

Cadel Evans in the most aggressive jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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American road race champion George Hincapie

American road race champion George Hincapie
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Cadel Evans rode the 2010 Tour Down Under to show his home fans the World Champion jersey

Cadel Evans rode the 2010 Tour Down Under to show his home fans the World Champion jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Alejandro Valverde working hard for Luis Leon Sanchez who has a young Peter Sagan on his wheel

Alejandro Valverde working hard for Luis Leon Sanchez who has a young Peter Sagan on his wheel
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Caisse d'Epargne team in 2010

The Caisse d'Epargne team in 2010
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mark Cavendish receives treatment on his injures after his crash at Mannum

Mark Cavendish receives treatment on his injures after his crash at Mannum
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Geraint Thomas looking worse for wear after crashing in Mannum

Geraint Thomas looking worse for wear after crashing in Mannum
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Michael Matthews was unstoppable in 2011 when the race visited Stirling

Michael Matthews was unstoppable in 2011 when the race visited Stirling
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Robbie Hunter gives commentating a go

Robbie Hunter gives commentating a go
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A future Milan-San Remo winner, Gerald Ciolek, back in 2011

A future Milan-San Remo winner, Gerald Ciolek, back in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Haedo brothers, JJ and Sebastian rode for Saxobank in 2011

The Haedo brothers, JJ and Sebastian rode for Saxobank in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mitch Docker and Graeme Brown in 2011

Mitch Docker and Graeme Brown in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Another future Milan-San Remo winner, Alexander Kristoff, was at the 2011 edition of the race

Another future Milan-San Remo winner, Alexander Kristoff, was at the 2011 edition of the race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Race director Mike Turtur in 2011

Race director Mike Turtur in 2011
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Water is essential for the riders during the hot January days at the Tour Down Under

Water is essential for the riders during the hot January days at the Tour Down Under
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom Roe has a long flat road ahead of him

Tom Roe has a long flat road ahead of him
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Luis Leon Sanchez wins the stage and points to the sky

Luis Leon Sanchez wins the stage and points to the sky
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Sky team studies the road book.

The Sky team studies the road book.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Cadel Evans (BMC) with another famous Australian

Cadel Evans (BMC) with another famous Australian
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Greg Henderson (Team Sky) cools down after a hot day in the saddle.

Greg Henderson (Team Sky) cools down after a hot day in the saddle.
(Image credit: Mark Gunter)
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Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Doimo) leads the race winning break

Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Doimo) leads the race winning break
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Willunga Hill had a Tour de France feel with the road painted and crowd vocal.

Willunga Hill had a Tour de France feel with the road painted and crowd vocal.
(Image credit: Mark Gunter)
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These lovely ladies watch the peloton pass on stage one

These lovely ladies watch the peloton pass on stage one
(Image credit: Mark Gunter)

The Tour Down Under, the first race of the 2015 WorldTour calendar starts in just 50 days time. Next year marks the 17th edition of the race which takes place in and around the South Australian city of Adelaide.

Simon Gerrans (Orica-GreenEdge) won the 2014 edition of the race to become the first rider to do so three times and returns in 2015 looking to make it four. Past winners of the race also include Luis León Sánchez, Martin Elmiger, André Greipel, Cameron Meyer and Tom-Jelte Slagter.

The race has become less of a sprinter's paradise than when it started out but that hasn't stopped the fastest men in the world consistently pinning on a race number down under. Robbie McEwan was the first sprinter to rule the roads but it is Greipel who now holds the record of the most wins at the race with 16. The German road race champion won't be attending the race in 2015, giving his rivals the chance to try and make a dent in his record.

In recent editions of the Tour Down Under, the climb up Willunga Hill has been decisive in deciding the general classification with just a handful of seconds between the top three. Gerrans has been a regular animator on the crowd friendly climb which is sure to witness another decisive stage in 2015.

Nest year's race will be a special occasion for Cadel Evans (BMC) as he waves farewell to the WorldTour and he will surely be out to add the race to his lengthy palmarès as the Tour de France champion retires from professional cycling a week later at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race.

To look through a gallery of past editions of the race, click here