GreenEDGE-AIS riders take national championships by storm
Australian cycling is entering an exciting new chapter in 2012 and the year has already started with some outstanding results for riders part of the new women’s professional team, GreenEDGE-AIS.
The new women’s set up, which features six Australian riders and four international stars, have shown their intent early in the year and recently shone at the 2012 Cycling Australia Mars National Road Championships.
In the elite women’s road race Amanda Spratt and Tiffany Cromwell finished first and second respectively while Shara Gillow was victorious in the elite women’s time trial.
Melissa Hoskins meanwhile was triumphant in the women’s under 23 criterium, whilst also recording a second place finish in the elite standings behind GreenEDGE-AIS rider Alexis Rhodes.
All four riders, despite riding for themselves during the national championships, will form part of the backbone of the GreenEDGE-AIS professional squad and have gained much of their experience from coming through the Australian Institute of Sport program and the national institute network.
In the men’s competitions, current and former AIS athletes also stamped their mark on the 2012 national championships with former scholarship holder Simon Gerrans winning the elite road race and current AIS cyclist Rohan Dennis claiming the under 23 title.
Dennis also won the under 23 time trial while 2011 AIS Junior Athlete of the Year Luke Durbridge won gold in the elite time trial.
The GreenEDGE-AIS women’s team is a three way partnership between GreenEDGE, Cycling Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport.
With GreenEDGE’s backing, the inclusion of a professional women’s team is a significant boost to Australia’s best female cyclists and completes the pathway supported by Cycling Australia, the AIS and state and territory Institutes of sport. The team will make their international professional debut at the Ladies Tour of Qatar from 1-3 February.
The Australian Government provides over $7.3 million of funding to cycling annually, with $5,443,000 directed towards high performance programs, $1,457,100 for the AIS program and $460,000 for participation initiatives.