Peloton Watch
  Simon Gerrans And His Amazing 2012  
  October 5th 2012  
  Orica-GreenEDGE's (or GreenEDGE as it was then known) maiden season got off to the perfect start thanks in no small part to Simon Gerrans. His first win of 2012 came on the 8th of January taking out the Australian National Road Race Championship. This was followed up by taking 2nd in what couldn't have been a closer finish on stage 5 of the Tour Down Under. This gave Simon the race lead, which he held on to the following day to take the overall win. This gave Simon his second overall win at the Tour Down Under and GreenEDGE their first win in a World Tour race in their first World Tour race.

From there Simon went to Paris-Nice where he finished 2nd on stage 3 to Alejandro Valverde (MOV). This was an almost identical finish to stage 5 at the Tour Down Under.

Continuing his early season good form he rode Milan-San Remo. GreenEDGE went there with two options, Matthew Goss (the winner in 2011) in a bunch sprint and Simon to cover any attacks on the on the Poggio. With about 7.5km to go Vincenzo Nibali (LIQ) attacked on the Poggio and Simon followed, Fabian Cancellara (RNT) quickly joined them. The three riders did not work particularly well together but with Cancellara using his time trailing ability and Gerrans contributing a couple of turns, the three riders just held off. Simon took the win ahead of Cancellara and Nibali.

In recent years the Ardennes classics (Amstel Gold Race, La Fleche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege) have been good hunting ground for Simon. This year however his early season success left him without enough in the tank to replicate past top 10 finishes there. Simon then took a break to prepare for the Tour de France. Despite a crash in the first week Simon played a key role in the teams Tour squad. Including several break attempts and looking after Matt Goss in a break to try and pick up crucial points classification points.

Simon went in to the one-day races at the back end of the season with the great form he had early on. Winning the bunch sprint for 2nd at Clasica de San Sebastian after a late solo attack by Luis Leon Sanchez (RAB).

Orica-GreenEDGE went to GP Ouest-France again with two options, Matt Goss and Simon. After a late attack by Rui Costa (MOV) Simon tried to follow but was dropped and returned to look after Goss, who ended up finishing 4th. Next up were the two Canadian World Tour races. First GP de Quebec, where Simon followed a late attack by Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) and out sprinted him for the win. After his win in Quebec, Simon was a favourite for the GP de Montreal. 3 riders attacked and stayed away just before the finish meaning the chance for the win was gone, but that didn't stop Simon winning the bunch sprint home for 4th.

After his strong performances in Canada, Simon was one of the favourites for the World Championships. Simon was in a good position heading in to the final climb up the Cauberg but nobody could match the pace set by eventual winner Philippe Gilbert. Simon finished in the bunch just 5 seconds off the lead where team-mate Allan Davis sprinted to 6th.

Simon wrapped up his 2012 season at the Giro di Lombardia, where terrible weather meant only about a quarter of the field finished.

Before 2012 Simon was already one of the best cyclists Australia has ever produced having won a stage in each of the three grand tours among an impressive palmares. His results this year including his second Tour Down Under win as well as a monument (Milan-San Remo) confirm Simon as one of Australia's greatest cyclists.
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