Domestic squads upset Team BikeExchange Santos Festival of Cycling plans

Team BikeExchange stretching out the peloton at the Santos Festival of Cycling during stage 1
(Image credit: Chameleon Photography)

It wasn’t the start the Team BikeExchange women's squad would have hoped for on its first day of racing at the Santos Festival of Cycling. The only Australian team competing at Women’s WorldTour level walked away from the National Road Series event having suffered at the hands of the in-form domestic riders as pre-race favourite Grace Brown (Team BikeExchange) ceded more than a minute on the overall. 

The Australian women’s team has dominated the racing in South Australia during January for years, though Amanda Spratt narrowly missed out on clinching her fourth title in 2020, beaten by Trek-Segafredo’s Ruth Winder. Then the team was facing a field packed with the top squads from all over the world. Now, with the UCI 2.Pro Santos Women’s Tour Down Under cancelled, it is instead facing a field packed with in-form domestic riders with everything to race for as the four-day tour unfolds.

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Simone Giuliani
Australia Editor

Simone is a degree-qualified journalist that has accumulated decades of wide-ranging experience while working across a variety of leading media organisations. She joined Cyclingnews as a Production Editor at the start of the 2021 season and has now moved into the role of Australia Editor. Previously she worked as a freelance writer, Australian Editor at Ella CyclingTips and as a correspondent for Reuters and Bloomberg. Cycling was initially purely a leisure pursuit for Simone, who started out as a business journalist, but in 2015 her career focus also shifted to the sport.