Phil Grenfell (GPM/Wilson Racing) celebrated Australia Day in style by winning the 19th edition of the Joseph Sunde Memorial Criterium, his last race on home soil before heading to the USA to join Pro continental squad Competitive Cyclist Racing for the 2012 season.
The 22 year old renowned sprinter from Taree enjoyed considerable success on the NRS calendar last year and his win in one of Sydney's premier criteriums is a great result for the GPM/Wilson Racing squad with team manager Trent Wilson also enjoying success at the race back in 2008.
Sydney's unpredictable summer weather meant the race encountered rain for the first time in 19 years resulting in smaller numbers but the 30 elite riders still maintained a high calibre of racing despite the conditions. An early casualty of the slippery conditions was in form Luke Davison (Budget Forklifts) who had difficulty cornering on his dry weather tyres.
This left a nine rider break of Grenfell, Matt Fleming, Andrew Crawley, Richard Lang, Stewart Campbell, Alex Malone, Alex Wong, Jose Rodriguez and Brad Mills who easily set about establishing a race winning move, despite a concerted efforted by Troy Gleenan and Julian Hamill.
Another rider hoping to finish his Australian summer on a race winning high was Richard Lang (Rapha Condor) who leaves next week for the UK. Lang has been in sublime form lately and had targeted today's event however an untimely puncture just on 3 laps to go and a wheel change with only a 14 tooth lowest cog effectively ruined his chances of a strong sprint. Grenfell made no mistake of the sprint after some fine lead out work from GPM team mates Crawley and Wong.
The remainder of the podium was filled with 40-something riders Stewart Campbell, Brad Mills and Jose Rodriguez who all displayed real grit and strength in the tough conditions.
The Joseph Sunde Memorial Criterium is dedicated to Joseph Sunde who lost his brave fight against leukemia in 1993 when he was 4 years old. The event has been won by an elite list of both Australian and international riders over the years and is conducted by Eastern Suburbs Cycling Club who once again conducted a great day's racing.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Phil Grenfell (GPM/Wilson Racing)|
|2||Richard Lang (Rapha Condor)|
|3||Stewart Campbell (Bicicsport)|
|4||Brad Mills (Nth Sydney)|
|5||Jose Rodriguez (Nth Sydney)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Roland Lang (Lidcombe Auburn)|
|2||Mark Ardiuon (Easts)|
|3||Ian Gardiner (Easts)|
|4||Peter O'Connor (Easts)|
|5||David Walsh (Randwick Botany)|
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