Porte the face of the Launceston Pro-Ex

Saxo Bank-Sungard's Richie Porte has been announced as an ambassador for the Launceston Pro-Ex cycling week, a new and unique event offering amateur cyclists from across the globe a chance to immerse themselves in a professional cycling experience.

Running from November 20 to 27, the Pro-Ex will be the first training camp of the Australian season.

"I am thrilled with the opportunity to share my passion for cycling with participants at the Launceston Pro-Ex," Porte said. "Being part of the Launceston Pro-Ex allows me to give something back to my hometown, where the scenic terrain helped shape my interest in cycling and inspired my career."

Registrations are now open for the week-long event which will provide an exclusive opportunity for more than 200 recreational cyclists to join some of Australia's top professionals, including Porte, on a training camp and participate in the 160-kilometre Opperman Gran Fondo mass participation ride in and around the cycling mecca of Launceston, Tasmania.

Keen cyclists will pursue their passion at a new level with the experience of living, training, eating and riding like a professional as they develop their knowledge of the intricacies of the sport in one of the world's cycling hot spots.

Launceston has been home to several current professionals including Matt Goss, along with Wes and Bernard Sulzberger.

The Launceston Criterium will fall within the Pro-Ex schedule, which traditionally attracts some of the country's best cyclists.

The event also comprises a three-day Tassie Trail mountain bike challenge for charity which can be tackled by teams of four riders.

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