Sarah Gigante: Lack of U23 women's category at Road World Championships ‘completely unfair’

Sarah Gigante (Australia) at the Tokyo Olympic Games where she competed in the road race and time trial
Sarah Gigante (Australia) at the Tokyo Olympic Games where she competed in the road race and time trial (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Luke Plapp and Sarah Gigante’s cycling careers have followed a remarkably similar path this year. The two Australian 20-year-old riders, who honed their skills racing and training together as juniors at the Brunswick Cycling Club, both started the year with attention grabbing performances at the Santos Festival of Cycling, won the nation’s elite time-trial titles, got picked to go to the Tokyo Olympic Games and, as some of the most sought after young talent in the world, signed with top WorldTour teams.

There is one area, however, where their paths diverge. Plapp got to line up at the UCI Road World Championships to compete in the U23 men’s time trial this year and, after securing silver, now looks ahead to the dream scenario of competing – and hopefully winning – in the category at his home-nation World Championships in Wollongong next year. As things currently stand, Gigante, however, won’t have that opportunity.

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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.