Luke Davison (Budget Forklifts) has added to his rapidly expanded palmares with his victory at the 2012 Goulburn to Sydney. The Australian National Road Series leader took out the 170km classic from Scott Law (Illawarra CC) and national Criterium Champion Anthony Giacoppo (Genesys Wealth Advisers).
The race has seen several breakaways but with some of the scene's top sprinters in exceptional form, the race which in 2012 is celebrating its 110-year-anniversary seemed destined to come down to a bunch finish. Drapac's Lachlan Norris who had been ultra-aggressive all day had been away with Search2Retain's Luke Fetch in the dying kilometres however with four left to race, the field was back together.
Through the final roundabout and up the slight incline for the final 200 metres to the finish, Giacoppo got the jump on Davison before the Budget rider edged just ahead. Meantime, Law was going toe-to-toe with Glenn O'Shea (SASI) for Davison's wheel as he got the better of Giacoppo for a clear run to the finish line. Davison celebrated and savoured the moment in front of family in friends in Camden.
"I just looked for the finish line; I don't worry about who's doing what," Davison explained of the run into the finish. "With 200 metres to go, you've just got to go.
"It's great to re-pay the boys for all the hard work they did today."
Davison said that the emphasis placed on the race can make it difficult knowing what to expect.
"I didn't get my hopes up I just did my best," he said. "I think after the finish today it's the first time I really savoured the win and had a really good thought about it."
Today's win was his 11th win in the NRS for the season.
Law, Australian under 23 Criterium Champion is only recently home following his stint in Europe racing for the An Post – Sean Kelly team so the 21-year-old was very happy with is runner-up placing.
"It was a great result today considering I was probably one of the only ones who was by myself," he told Cyclingnews. "Hopefully there's better things to come."
Heading into 2012, Giacoppo loomed as the man to beat when it came to the sprint finishes, thanks mostly to his win at the Australian Criterium Championship and others in Taiwan, Borneo and Kumano. Davison may have the better of him at the moment, but Giacoppo remains pleased with the way the year is panning out.
"I wouldn't say [I'm] marked but it does make it a little bit harder because it put a bit of pressure on," he told Cyclingnews. "People are watching you. I'm still happy with the way things are going and I couldn't ask for much more."
Giacoppo also has no doubt that head-to-head, Davison has slightly more speed.
"Once he gets going and he gets a clear road in front of him he's pretty hard to beat," the West Australian explained. "Starting behind him makes it even harder. I got a bit of a jump on him today but had to come around the outside and doing so probably made myself go slightly further. He put himself in the right spot."
How it unfolded -
The morning fog had just about lifted when racing got underway shortly before 8am in Goulburn and it wasn’t long out of the neutral zone when numerous riders attacked.
The first real threat came via Nicholas D’Ambrosio (Parramatta Race Team), Brock Roberts (John West Cycling) and Alex Malone (Plan B Racing) with the trio gaining 21 seconds on the peloton before being brought back to the bunch.
Suzuki-Trek’s Mitchell Pearson was next to try his luck moving ahead of the peloton on his own before being joined by Rhys Pollock (Drapac Professional Cycling) and three other riders. The bunch got strung out but the group was caught at the 20 kilometre mark.
Pollock was obviously feeling good and once again attacked, this time being joined by Michael Cupitt (Budget Forklifts), Aaron Donnelly (Jayco-HoneyShotz) and Ed White (GPM - Wilson Racing) and with 32kms of racing complete, their gap was out to 38 seconds.
Genesys Wealth Advisers attempted to bridge the gap but the Orange Army was soon shut down at the leaders’ advantage continued to grow. A small crash in the bunch took down Drapac’s Darren Lapthorne and Genesys’ Jai Crawford however both recovered quickly.
Meantime the leading quartet hit the first KOM of the day near Berrima with Pollock crossing the line first, followed by White and Cupitt.
With 80kms of racing done, the gap was out to a maximum of 2:55 and the advantage was maintained as the escape group went through Mittagong at the 88km mark.
The gap started to come down and with Genesys driving the peloton, the bunch was 2:15 in arrears after 100km of racing. The advantage hanging at around 2:00 after briefly sitting at 1:53, the Bargo sprint was taken out by Donnelly, with Cupitt and Pollock next best. The gap continued to come down at 1:39 as the breakaway reached the Tahmoor sprint with Donnelly again first across the line in a repeat of the first result. The next challenge was the first ascent of Razorback and that continued to bring the gap down as riders began to drop off the main bunch. The gap stood at around 1:00 as Pollock took maximum points at the KOM with Cupitt and White claiming the minor points. It was a matter of bad luck for Cupitt as he suffered a rear wheel puncture which forced him to drop back leaving the breakaway with three men,
Moving on to Old Razorback Road for the north ascent of Razorback, the bunch had the leaders in sight with the gap down to 40 seconds and the game was up. After 148 kilometres of racing, the day’s main break was caught.
Drapac continued to put pressure on the race, this time Lachlan Norris attacked as the peloton was on the climb. Norris, who won Saturday’s criterium in Goulburn, was quickly joined by Brodie Talbot (Racing Kangaroos) and Chris Jory (GPM - Wilson Racing) but they too could not gain any decent gap on the field. With their slight advantage over, Drapac’s Darren Lapthorne led the peloton over the top of Old Razorback. Sensing the danger, Search2Retain and Genesys were active at the front of the bunch, sending Nathan Earle (Genesys) and Luke Fetch (Search2Retain) to go with Lapthorne, Norris and Jory as the group of five moved ahead.
A maximum gap of around 300 metres was reached before being caught by a swarming peloton with around 10km to go. But this was not a race that was ready to settle down as it came along the Camden By-Pass.
Fetch and Norris stayed clear until four kilometres to go leaving the race to be decided by a bunch finish.
Pollock, speaking to Cyclingnews following the race reiterated how important it was for the Drapac team to put in a great showing following the untimely death of former teammate and winner of the Goulburn to Sydney, Robbie Williams several weeks ago.
"I was thinking that it would be nice [to win]," the Tour de Taiwan winner said. "I think it’s the way I race and the way the team races and the way Robbie rode as well. I wasn’t holding back to get the easy win, I put it on the line... I left nothing out there.
"His Dad said on the start that it’s more about the camaraderie and giving it everything on the day. If you win it’s a bonus. I think we did that today so that’s all we can do."
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Luke Davison (Budget Forklifts)||3:59:31|
|2||Scott Law (Illawarra CC)||Row 1 - Cell 2|
|3||Anthony Giacoppo (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 2 - Cell 2|
|4||Glen O'Shea (SASI)||Row 3 - Cell 2|
|5||Jared Triggs (Southern Cross CC)||Row 4 - Cell 2|
|6||Chris Jory (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 5 - Cell 2|
|7||Caleb Jones (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 6 - Cell 2|
|8||Neil Van Der Ploeg (Search2Retain)||Row 7 - Cell 2|
|9||Brendan Johnston (Suzuki Trek)||Row 8 - Cell 2|
|10||James Hepburn (Ipswich CC)||Row 9 - Cell 2|
|11||Brodie Talbot (Racing Kangaroos)||Row 10 - Cell 2|
|12||Sam Stow (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||Row 11 - Cell 2|
|13||Jacob Kauffmann (Charter Mason / Drapac)||Row 12 - Cell 2|
|14||Cal Britten (Search2Retain)||Row 13 - Cell 2|
|15||Sam Rutherford (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 14 - Cell 2|
|16||Ryan Thomas (Inverell C&T)||Row 15 - Cell 2|
|17||Florice Goesinnen (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 16 - Cell 2|
|18||Eamonn Bell (Illawarra CC)||Row 17 - Cell 2|
|19||Blair Windsor (Budget Forklifts)||Row 18 - Cell 2|
|20||Jai Crawford (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 19 - Cell 2|
|21||Nathan Earle (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 20 - Cell 2|
|22||Aiden Toovey (Racing Kangaroos)||Row 21 - Cell 2|
|23||Marc Williams (Budget Forklifts)||Row 22 - Cell 2|
|24||Duncan Houston (Eastern Suburbs CC)||Row 23 - Cell 2|
|25||Jordan Davies (Penrith CC)||Row 24 - Cell 2|
|26||Ben Dyball (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 25 - Cell 2|
|27||Luke Fetch (Search2Retain)||Row 26 - Cell 2|
|28||Harry Carpenter (SASI)||Row 27 - Cell 2|
|29||Jason Spencer (Budget Forklifts)||Row 28 - Cell 2|
|30||Aaron Donnelly (Illawarra CC)||Row 29 - Cell 2|
|31||Nathan Elliott (Charter Mason / Drapac)||Row 30 - Cell 2|
|32||Callum O'Sullivan (Data#3 Cisco Racing)||Row 31 - Cell 2|
|33||Cameron Bayly (Search2Retain)||Row 32 - Cell 2|
|34||David Mainwaring (Illawarra CC)||Row 33 - Cell 2|
|35||Benjamin Harvey (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 34 - Cell 2|
|36||David Melville (Data#3 Cisco Racing)||Row 35 - Cell 2|
|37||Lachlan Norris (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 36 - Cell 2|
|38||Matthew Marshall (International - New Zealand)||Row 37 - Cell 2|
|39||Karl Evans (SASI)||Row 38 - Cell 2|
|40||Rowan Dever (John West Cycling)||Row 39 - Cell 2|
|41||Darren Lapthorn (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 40 - Cell 2|
|42||Josh Berry (Suzuki Trek)||Row 41 - Cell 2|
|43||Jonathon Cridland (Southern Cross CC)||Row 42 - Cell 2|
|44||Jay Bourke (Ballarat/Sebastopol CC)||0:00:17|
|45||Mark O'Brien (Budget Forklifts)||0:00:25|
|46||Alex Wong (GPM - Wilson Racing)||0:00:31|
|47||Darcy Woolley (Port Fairy CC)||0:02:03|
|48||Tom Patton (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 47 - Cell 2|
|49||Ryan Quade (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||Row 48 - Cell 2|
|50||Craig Hutton (Racing Kangaroos)||0:02:05|
|51||Vaughan Bowman (Carnegie Caulfield CC)||Row 50 - Cell 2|
|52||Harrison Morgan (Northern Sydney CC)||Row 51 - Cell 2|
|53||Ronald Visser (Sydney Uni Velo Club)||Row 52 - Cell 2|
|54||Samuel Nelson (St George CC)||Row 53 - Cell 2|
|55||Daniel Bonello (Manly Warringah CC)||Row 54 - Cell 2|
|56||Tom Paton (Geelong CC)||Row 55 - Cell 2|
|57||Peter Smith (Carnegie Caulfield CC)||Row 56 - Cell 2|
|58||Kris Johnston (Canberra CC)||Row 57 - Cell 2|
|59||Keegan Aitchison (Southern Cross CC)||Row 58 - Cell 2|
|60||Mitchell Flynn (Suzuki Trek)||Row 59 - Cell 2|
|61||Matthew Rizzuto (Canberra CC)||Row 60 - Cell 2|
|62||Daniel Hennessy (Illawarra CC)||Row 61 - Cell 2|
|63||Samuel Hill (Hunter District CC)||Row 62 - Cell 2|
|64||Laurent Groom (Suzuki Trek)||0:02:09|
|65||Samuel Wood (Data#3 Cisco Racing)||Row 64 - Cell 2|
|66||Aidan McKenzie (Uni CC)||Row 65 - Cell 2|
|67||Thomas Palmer (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 66 - Cell 2|
|68||Phillip Mundy (SASI)||Row 67 - Cell 2|
|69||Christopher Aitken (NKC-Lexus Cycling)||Row 68 - Cell 2|
|70||Conor Murtagh (Charter Mason / Drapac)||Row 69 - Cell 2|
|71||Mitchell Cooper (Charter Mason / Drapac)||Row 70 - Cell 2|
|72||Nicholas Woods (Balmoral CC)||Row 71 - Cell 2|
|73||Luke Williams (St George CC)||Row 72 - Cell 2|
|74||Rhys Pollock (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 73 - Cell 2|
|75||Malcolm Rudolph (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 74 - Cell 2|
|76||Michael Cupitt (Budget Forklifts)||Row 75 - Cell 2|
|77||Hadleigh Milligan (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||0:02:17|
|78||Peter Loft (Budget Forklifts)||0:02:29|
|79||Antony Dimitrovski (Parramatta Race Team)||0:03:14|
|80||Guy Brown (NKC-Lexus Cycling)||Row 79 - Cell 2|
|81||Shane Barrie (Illawarra CC)||Row 80 - Cell 2|
|82||Jason Chalker (Canberra CC)||0:03:20|
|83||Mitchell Pearson (Suzuki Trek)||Row 82 - Cell 2|
|84||Stuart Shaw (Drapac Professional Cycling)||Row 83 - Cell 2|
|85||Brendan Jones (Northern Sydney CC)||Row 84 - Cell 2|
|86||Nicholas D'Ambrosio (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 85 - Cell 2|
|87||Maxime Ruphy (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||Row 86 - Cell 2|
|88||Edward White (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 87 - Cell 2|
|89||Josh Taylor (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 88 - Cell 2|
|90||Correy Edmed (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||0:05:22|
|91||Luke Meers (Illawarra CC)||Row 90 - Cell 2|
|92||Andrew Schotte (Randwick Botany CC)||Row 91 - Cell 2|
|93||Jules Galli (Randwick Botany CC)||Row 92 - Cell 2|
|94||Robby Dalitz (Penrith CC)||Row 93 - Cell 2|
|95||David Gillies (Canberra CC)||0:05:24|
|96||Sam Sautelle (Suzuki Trek)||0:05:26|
|97||James Miller (BCRI)||Row 96 - Cell 2|
|98||Ashley Fawker (Horsham CC)||Row 97 - Cell 2|
|99||Tom Christie (Melbourne University)||0:05:28|
|100||Brock Roberts (John West Cycling)||Row 99 - Cell 2|
|101||Wesley Hurrell (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 100 - Cell 2|
|102||Hayden Kegg (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 101 - Cell 2|
|103||James Bernard (Sydney Uni Velo Club)||Row 102 - Cell 2|
|104||Nathan Bradshaw (St George CC)||0:05:33|
|105||Clive Silcock (Melbourne University)||0:05:39|
|106||Jesse Ewart (Kooragang Open CC)||0:06:10|
|107||Saxon Irvine (Northern Sydney CC)||Row 106 - Cell 2|
|108||Samuel Volker (Data#3 Cisco Racing)||0:06:14|
|109||Zach Baker (Bathurst CC)||0:06:47|
|110||Campbell Flakemore (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||0:06:54|
|111||Shane Edmonds (Inverell C&T)||0:07:31|
|112||Jeremy Ross (ADF Cycling)||0:08:01|
|113||Jarrod Coveny (Goulburn CC)||0:08:18|
|114||Richard Allen (Data#3 Cisco Racing)||0:08:49|
|115||Samuel Davis (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 114 - Cell 2|
|116||Barry Kenyon (Northern Sydney CC)||Row 115 - Cell 2|
|117||Tamas Allenby (Sydney Uni Velo Club)||Row 116 - Cell 2|
|118||Matt Bush (Penrith CC)||Row 117 - Cell 2|
|119||Todd Greenland (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 118 - Cell 2|
|120||Paul Hearne (Peel Districts CC)||Row 119 - Cell 2|
|121||Joel Finucane (Canberra CC)||Row 120 - Cell 2|
|122||Chris Edden (Hunter District CC)||Row 121 - Cell 2|
|123||Thomas Donald (Search2Retain)||Row 122 - Cell 2|
|124||Jonathon Lovelock (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||Row 123 - Cell 2|
|125||Alastair Loutit (GPM - Wilson Racing)||Row 124 - Cell 2|
|126||Nathan Ruks (Hunter District CC)||Row 125 - Cell 2|
|127||Adrian Trevor (Hunter District CC)||Row 126 - Cell 2|
|128||Trent Derecourt (John West Cycling)||0:08:57|
|129||Christian Tune (Sydney Uni Velo Club)||Row 128 - Cell 2|
|130||Matthew Lane (Port Fairy CC)||Row 129 - Cell 2|
|131||Joshua Apolony (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||0:09:40|
|132||Kevin Hawes (Racing Kangaroos)||0:16:12|
|133||Billy Hutton (Racing Kangaroos)||0:16:14|
|134||James Ibrahim (Bendigo & District CC)||0:16:33|
|135||Karl Michelin-Beard (Canberra CC)||0:16:45|
|136||Andrew Crawley (GPM - Wilson Racing)||0:20:02|
|137||Simon Hammond (Parramatta Race Team)||Row 136 - Cell 2|
|138||Blair Arnold (Illawarra CC)||Row 137 - Cell 2|
|139||Paul Verkuylen (Hunter District CC)||Row 138 - Cell 2|
|140||Dane Macky (Pensar-Hawk Racing)||Row 139 - Cell 2|
|141||Matthew Murray (Victor Broncos CC)||Row 140 - Cell 2|
|142||Damian Mason (Nowra Velo Club)||0:20:56|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Aaron Donnelly (Illawarra CC)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Rhys Pollock (Drapac Professional Cycling)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
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As a sports journalist and producer since 1997, Jane has covered Olympic and Commonwealth Games, rugby league, motorsport, cricket, surfing, triathlon, rugby union, and golf for print, radio, television and online. However her enduring passion has been cycling.
Jane is a former Australian Editor of Cyclingnews from 2011 to 2013 and continues to freelance within the cycling industry.