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Hepburn claims U23 title

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Podium (L-R): Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco-Skins), Michael Hepburn (Jayco-Skins) and Michael Matthews (Jayco-Skins).

Podium (L-R): Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco-Skins), Michael Hepburn (Jayco-Skins) and Michael Matthews (Jayco-Skins).
(Image credit: Greg Johnson)
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The peloton chasing Ben King (Trek-Livestrong) mid-race.

The peloton chasing Ben King (Trek-Livestrong) mid-race.
(Image credit: Greg Johnson)
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Ben King (Trek-Livestrong) was active early in the race, but only managed to pull out a 50 second lead.

Ben King (Trek-Livestrong) was active early in the race, but only managed to pull out a 50 second lead.
(Image credit: Greg Johnson)
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Richard Lang (left) and Nick Aitken descend down Gear Avenue

Richard Lang (left) and Nick Aitken descend down Gear Avenue
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Riders descend beneath the trees on Gear Avenue where they would have appreciated

Riders descend beneath the trees on Gear Avenue where they would have appreciated
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Riders in the men's under 23 road race leave the Midland Highway

Riders in the men's under 23 road race leave the Midland Highway
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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A single Drapac Porsche rider is surrounded by Jayco/Skins riders

A single Drapac Porsche rider is surrounded by Jayco/Skins riders
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Confusion reigned in the home straight as the split in the lead group

Confusion reigned in the home straight as the split in the lead group
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Two riders up-ahead got away from the lead group

Two riders up-ahead got away from the lead group
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Try this on for size: Michael Hepburn is fitted with his Australian jersey on the podium after winning the men's under 23 road race.

Try this on for size: Michael Hepburn is fitted with his Australian jersey on the podium after winning the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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You little beauty! Michael Hepburn from Queensland was wrapped to take gold in the men's under 23 road race championship.

You little beauty! Michael Hepburn from Queensland was wrapped to take gold in the men's under 23 road race championship.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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The peloton in the men's under 23 road race climb Mt.Buninyong early into the 122.4 km race.

The peloton in the men's under 23 road race climb Mt.Buninyong early into the 122.4 km race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Action from the men's under 23 road race championship in Buninyong.

Action from the men's under 23 road race championship in Buninyong.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Mobile shower: Drapac Porsche's Angus Morton cools himself down on the road during hot conditions in the men's under 23 road race.

Mobile shower: Drapac Porsche's Angus Morton cools himself down on the road during hot conditions in the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Scott Law (Budget Forklifts) from New South Wales descends down Gear Avenue, Law put in some fine performances on the track in the recent Tasmanian Christmas Carnival Series.

Scott Law (Budget Forklifts) from New South Wales descends down Gear Avenue, Law put in some fine performances on the track in the recent Tasmanian Christmas Carnival Series.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Riders in the men's under 23 road race descend Gear Avenue in the early stages of the race.

Riders in the men's under 23 road race descend Gear Avenue in the early stages of the race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Early breakaway rider Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) from Western Australia cools himself off in the searing heat in Buninyong.

Early breakaway rider Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) from Western Australia cools himself off in the searing heat in Buninyong.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) was away for around five laps of the 122.4km men's under 23 road race.

Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) was away for around five laps of the 122.4km men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Riders were closing the gap on Benjamin King in the second half of the race.

Riders were closing the gap on Benjamin King in the second half of the race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Angus Morton of Drapac Porsche steers a group up Mt.Buninyong as they close in on Benjamin King out in front.

Angus Morton of Drapac Porsche steers a group up Mt.Buninyong as they close in on Benjamin King out in front.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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The spotlight was on Skins as Michael Hepburn takes a drink during the men's under 23 road race.

The spotlight was on Skins as Michael Hepburn takes a drink during the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Skins all round as their riders were a dominant force in the lead group during the men's under 23 road race.

Skins all round as their riders were a dominant force in the lead group during the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Joseph Lewis (Drapac Porsche) was surrounded by Jayco/Skins riders in the lead group during the closing laps of the men's under 23 road race.

Joseph Lewis (Drapac Porsche) was surrounded by Jayco/Skins riders in the lead group during the closing laps of the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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The business end of the race as riders sneak off the front of the lead group with one lap to go.

The business end of the race as riders sneak off the front of the lead group with one lap to go.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Michael Hepburn receives some encouragement on the climb up the Midland Highway as Jayco/Skins teammate Malcolm Rudolph tries to bridge the gap in the background.

Michael Hepburn receives some encouragement on the climb up the Midland Highway as Jayco/Skins teammate Malcolm Rudolph tries to bridge the gap in the background.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Hot work: Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland cools down on the last lap of the men's under 23 road race.

Hot work: Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland cools down on the last lap of the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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One became two as Malcolm Rudolph joined his Jayco/Skins teammate Michael Hepburn on the climb up Mt.Buninyong on the final lap.

One became two as Malcolm Rudolph joined his Jayco/Skins teammate Michael Hepburn on the climb up Mt.Buninyong on the final lap.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland had plenty of time to celebrate his win up the home straight in Buninyong.

Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland had plenty of time to celebrate his win up the home straight in Buninyong.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland takes out the men's under 23 road race championship in Buninyong.

Michael Hepburn (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland takes out the men's under 23 road race championship in Buninyong.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Michael Matthews (right) of Jayco/Skins completes the trifecta as he pulls a mono on the line ahead of Drapac Porsche's Joseph Lewis.

Michael Matthews (right) of Jayco/Skins completes the trifecta as he pulls a mono on the line ahead of Drapac Porsche's Joseph Lewis.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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A hard day at the office: Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland recovers after his silver medal ride in the men's under 23 road race.

A hard day at the office: Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco/Skins) from Queensland recovers after his silver medal ride in the men's under 23 road race.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Gold Medallist Michael Hepburn explains his winning ride to Jayco/Skins teammate and bronze medallist Michael Matthews.

Gold Medallist Michael Hepburn explains his winning ride to Jayco/Skins teammate and bronze medallist Michael Matthews.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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A mars a day…Sprint and King of the Mountains Champion Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) bites into one of the sponsors products on the podium in Buninyong.

A mars a day…Sprint and King of the Mountains Champion Benjamin King (Trek Livestrong) bites into one of the sponsors products on the podium in Buninyong.
(Image credit: Shane Goss)
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The men's under 23 podium (l-r): Malcolm Rudolph (2nd), Michael Hepburn (1st), Michael Matthews (3rd).

The men's under 23 podium (l-r): Malcolm Rudolph (2nd), Michael Hepburn (1st), Michael Matthews (3rd).
(Image credit: Shane Goss)

Michael Hepburn (Jayco-Skins) claimed the Under-23 Australian Road Championship after a drag race down the home straight with teammate Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco-Skins). The Jayco-Skins squad dominated the podium with Michael Matthews lifting a wheel off the ground as he took third place in a fierce sprint against Joseph Lewis (Drapac-Porsche).

Hepburn hadn’t contested a road race in the five months prior to today’s race, but knew he entered the event in strong condition. “I knew the form was pretty good,” said Hepburn. “My focus has been on the track but the last month has been just purely road training, so I knew the form was there. I didn’t really expect this; I’m not shocked, but I am surprised.”

Hepburn’s focus will return to the track for a few more months, but he’s looking forward to wearing the jersey during his stint on the road in Italy later this year. “I just thought about that before actually, it’s going to be pretty special wearing the Australian jersey in Under-23 races in Italy,” he said.

Rudolph, just 20 years of age, said the team’s dominate display helped ease the pain of losing Thursday’s criterium title. The Jayco-Skins team, formerly SouthAustralia.com-AIS, also took the top three positions in the Under 23 men’s time trial on Wednesday.

“It was good to get me and Mick up the road at the end, and as we were in control, we just had to ride to the finish and sort it out between us,” said Rudolph. “It was a dominant display by us today which is what we wanted to do after being beaten in Thursday’s criterium. We were very disappointed in that so it’s great to come out today on top."

The Trek-Livestrong team started a tactical race when Ben King followed a solo attack by Matthew Benson. King tore away with Benson, then dropped the rider as he took a reasonable solo lead aimed at forcing the rival teams to work while teammate Timothy Roe sat in on the moves.

While Roe was present in the break that formed with seven laps remaining, the numbers Jayco-Skins and Drapac-Porsche had present made it impossible for the two-man Trek-Livestrong duo to prevail. The break included riders like Nathan Haas, Nick Aitken, Ben Grenda, Benson, Sam Davis, Matthew Clarke, Aaron Donnelly, Hepburn, Richard Lang, Angus Morton, Thomas Palmer and Blair Windsor.

The 17 chasers were joined by a second group, blowing out the chase to 40 riders. That was quickly shattered however when Jayco-Skins place seven riders at the front, tailed by five Drapac-Porsche riders – their combined horsepower tearing the chase group apart.

King was caught as Under 23 time trial winner Rohan Dennis ripped away from the field, putting the hurt on Jayco-Skins’ rivals. Dennis’ efforts narrowed the front selection to 10 as he was caught, setting up a perfect platform for a counter-attack by his teammates.

Hepburn and Rudolph rose from the carnage to play out the final stages of the last lap by themselves. Behind Matthews had a bigger battle on his hands, the Australian Capital Territory rider forced to sprint against Lewis from a bunch of five riders, including Roe.

Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Michael Hepburn (QLD)3:20:07
2Malcolm Rudolph (QLD)0:00:03
3Michael Matthews (ACT)0:00:56
4Joseph Lewis (NSW)
5Timothy Roe (SA)0:00:57
6Ben Dyball (NSW)
7Angus Morton (NSW)
8Luke Durbridge (WA)
9Geoff Straub (NSW)0:02:53
10Rohan Dennis (SA)
11Ben Grenda (TAS)0:03:04
12Nathan Earle (TAS)0:04:15
13Reuben Donati (NSW)0:04:43
14Ryan Obst (SA)
15Lachlan Stewart (VIC)
16Sam Davis (WA)0:07:41
17Benjamin King (WA)
18Kane Walker (VIC)0:08:03
19James Mowatt (VIC)
20Merlin Spranz (SA)
21Aaron Donnelly (NSW)0:08:05
22Douglas Repacholi (WA)
23Cal Britten (VIC)
24Alastair Loutit (ACT)
25Mohammed Adiq Husainie Othman (MAS)
26Brodie Talbot (NSW)0:11:23
27Jason Spencer (VIC)0:12:49
28Andrew Arundel (ACT)0:12:51
29Rhys Gillett (VIC)0:13:40
30Stuart Grimsey (VIC)0:13:43
DNFJustin Ieronimo (VIC)
DNFTom Last (GBR)
DNFNathan Haas (MTB)
DNFNick Aitken (VIC)
DNFMichael Freiberg (WA)
DNFTimothy White (VIC)
DNFMitchell Mulhern (QLD)
DNFAdam Phelan (ACT)
DNFMatthew Benson (SA)
DNFEric Sheppard (VIC)
DNFBen Grieve-Johnson (TAS)
DNFBen Cutajar (QLD)
DNFSam Genge (ACT)
DNFKevin Harnett (SA)
DNFLachlan Ambrose (SA)
DNFOwen Cooke (NSW)
DNFRuan Benson (QLD)
DNFDaniel Hopper (VIC)
DNFNathan Elliott (VIC)
DNFDavid Hampton (NSW)
DNFDaniel Swanbury (NSW)
DNFDavid Abraham (TAS)
DNFSamuel Beveridge (VIC)
DNFPeter Braunsteins (VIC)
DNFDaniel Braunsteins (VIC)
DNFMitch Brogden (VIC)
DNFAlex Carver (NSW)
DNFAndrew Christie (VIC)
DNFMatthew Clark (VIC)
DNFKristopher Collins (NSW)
DNFIvan Cook (QLD)
DNFPatrick Drapac (VIC)
DNFSean Evangelista (QLD)
DNFLuke Fetch (VIC)
DNFBenjamin Fleming (QLD)
DNFLuca Giacomin (VIC)
DNFPhilip Grenfell (NSW)
DNFTrevor Griffiths (VIC)
DNFDoug Hagger (TAS)
DNFJames Henry (VIC)
DNFJames Hepburn (QLD)
DNFBenjamin Hill (NSW)
DNFCraig Hutton (NSW)
DNFPatrick Lane (VIC)
DNFRichard Lang (NSW)
DNFScott Law (NSW)
DNFPeter Loft (TAS)
DNFVivian Mccarthy (VIC)
DNFJames Mcdulling (NSW)
DNFThomas Palmer (ACT)
DNFMichael Phelan (ACT)
DNFLiam Poole (NSW)
DNFJoshua Prete (QLD)
DNFDanny Pulbrook (TAS)
DNFJames Quinton (ACT)
DNFHarry Rassie (QLD)
DNFThomas Robinson (TAS)
DNFDean Sanfilippo (VIC)
DNFDale Scarfe (NSW)
DNFClive Silcock (VIC)
DNFAlexander Smyth (VIC)
DNFJoel Stearnes (TAS)
DNFJoshua Taylor (NSW)
DNFPaul Van Der Ploeg (VIC)
DNFNicholas Walker (VIC)
DNFDylan Wallis (SA)
DNFJackson Wardrop (QLD)
DNFMatthew Williams (QLD)
DNFChristopher Williams (NSW)
DNFTrent Williams (VIC)
DNFBlair Windsor (NSW)
DNFJames Langedyk (VIC)
DNFPatrick Gill (WA)
DNFJeremy Hills (TAS)
DNFBrenton Jones (VIC)
DNFTimothy Cameron (ACT)
DNSJohann Esterhuyzen (NSW)
DNSLouis Evangelista (QLD)
DNSMichael Fitzgerald (WA)
DNSPeter Johnstone (VIC)
DNSGlenn O'shea (VIC)
DNSCarson Tully (VIC)

Michael Hepburn (Jayco-Skins) claimed the Under 23 Australian Road Championship after a drag race down the home straight with team-mate Malcolm Rudolph (Jayco-Skins). The Jayco-Skins squad dominated the podium with Michael Matthews lifting a wheel off the ground as he took third place in a sprint against Joseph Lewis (Drapac-Porsche).

Hepburn hadn’t contested a road race in the five months prior to today’s race, but knew he entered the event in strong form. “I knew the form was pretty good,” said Hepburn. “My focus has been on the track but the last month has been just purely road training, so I knew the form was there. I didn’t really expect this; I’m not shocked, but I am surprised.”

Hepburn’s focus will return to the track for a few more months, but he’s looking forward to wearing the jersey during his stint on the road in Italy later this year. “I just thought about that before actually, it’s going to be pretty special wearing the Australian jersey in Under 23 races in Italy,” he said.

Rudolph, just 20 years of age, said the team’s dominate display helped ease the pain of losing Thursday’s criterium title. The Jayco-Skins team, formerly SouthAustralia.com-AIS, also took the top three positions in the Under 23 men’s time trial on Wednesday.

“It was good to get me and Mick up the road at the end, and as we were in control, we just had to ride to the finish and sort it out between us,” said Rudolph. “It was a dominant display by us today which is what we wanted to do after being beaten in Thursday’s criterium. We were very disappointed in that so it’s great to come out today on top."

The Trek-Livestrong team started a tactical race when Ben King followed a solo attack by Matthew Benson. King tore away with Benson, then dropped the rider as he took a reasonable solo lead aimed at forcing the rival teams to work while team-mate Timothy Roe sat in on the moves.

While Roe was present in the break that formed with seven laps remaining, the numbers Jayco-Skins and Drapac-Porsche had present made it impossible for the two-man Trek-Livestrong duo to prevail. The break included riders like Nathan Haas, Nick Aitken, Ben Grenda, Benson, Sam Davis, Matthew Clarke, Aaron Donnelly, Hepburn, Richard Lang, Angus Morton, Thomas Palmer and Blair Windsor.

The 17 chasers were joined by a second group, blowing out the chase to 40 riders. That was quickly shattered however when Jayco-Skins place seven riders at the front, tailed by five Drapac-Porsche riders – their combined horsepower tearing the chase group apart.

King was caught as Under 23 time trial winner Rohan Dennis ripped away from the field, putting the hurt on Jayco-Skins’ rivals. Dennis’ efforts narrowed the front selection to 10 as he was caught, setting up a perfect platform for a counter-attack by his team-mates.

Hepburn and Rudolph rose from the carnage to play out the final stages of the last lap by themselves. Behind Matthews had a bigger battle on his hands, the Australian Capital Territory rider forced to sprint against Lewis from a bunch of five riders, including Roe.

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