Tour of Gippsland
Scott Law has continued his rich vein of form, sprinting to victory on the streets of Traralgon as the 2016 Subaru National Road Series continued today with stage one of the Australian Paper Tour of Gippsland. Avanti IsoWhey Sports duo Pat Shaw and Sam Crome rounded out the podium in second and third...
Avanti IsoWhey Sports controlled the early laps, with Joe Cooper driving the pace as the Avanti train softened up the peloton. As early as lap five it was 500 metres from the front to the back of the peloton. After driving the peloton and launching his own attack after the second sprint lap, Cooper was awarded the most aggressive riders jersey on the stage.
"We had a bit of a chat before the stage and Pat Shaw said he wanted to take up the charge straight from the start, but I thought he couldn’t push the big ring hard enough so I had to jump in front of him and save his ageing legs a little bit," Cooper explained.
"I’ve got fond memories of the Tour of Gippsland, making my comeback in 2014 after breaking my hip, so I’m glad to be back and I’m glad the event is on the Subaru National Road Series calendar again."
With a third of the peloton pulled from the race after 13 laps, the damage was all done ahead of the first sprint, which was taken out by Lachlan Holliday from Swiss Wellness Cycling Team. The Avanti IsoWhey Sports, State of Matter/MAAP and Subaru NSWIS squads all controlled the pace in the middle of the race, while attempts were made from several Pats Veg Racing riders as well as SASI’s Harry Carpenter but the pace was too high for anything to stick.
After the second sprint, which was won by Jacob Kauffman, Joe Cooper hit a tiring peloton and quickly opened up a five second lead. NSWIS responded by putting four riders on the front to close the gap, setting up the grandstand finish for Law."It was good to start with a win in the early crits, I can get around them ok, I’ve seen on Saturday there’s three climbs up Mt Misery, I’m not looking overly forward to that one!
"We’ve got quite a few good young guys coming through the ranks, and a few of the older guys telling us what to do, so it’s a good mix of boys and we all get along really well, so we just get out there and have a bit of fun, and if a good result comes our way we’re pretty happy!" said Law.
Race Director John Trevorrow was amazed by the 49km/h average speed for the stage.
"That was a quick one today! We have a very high class of rider in this event, and for riders of that ability to be getting dropped in the first half of the event just shows you how fast they were going.
"It was a wonderful race with a brilliant sprint from Scott Law, he was very fast with a lot of quick sprinters in there today," he concluded.
The Australian Paper Tour of Gippsland continues tomorrow with stage two seeing the peloton race 105 kilometres from Paynesville to Metung, starting at 10:30am.
Follow @Subaru_NRS and the hashtag #tog16 for updates.