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  Last year Orica-GreenEDGE were in control from start to finish, infiltrating the main break, controlling and bringing it back together so Cameron Meyer could launch an attack, followed by Simon Gerrans on the final lap. Cadel Evans and Richie Porte bridged across making it four riders battling for the medals.

Coming in to the finish Meyer gave it everything for Gerrans who proved unbeatable in the sprint to claim his second national title.

2014 Results

2 Cadel EVANS +0
3 Richie PORTE +0
4 Cameron MEYER +5
5 Jack BOBRIDGE +23
6 Darren LAPTHORNE +23
7 Mark O'BRIEN +29
8 Steele VON HOFF +48
9 Zakkari DEMPSTER +48
10 David TANNER +48
11 Travis MEYER +48
12 Nathan EARLE +48
13 Adam HANSEN +48
14 William CLARKE +1:27
15 Wesley SULZBERGER +1:27

Past Winners

2014 Simon Gerrans
2013 Luke Durbridge
2012 Simon Gerrans
2011 Jack Bobridge
2010 Travis Meyer
2009 Peter McDonald
2008 Matthew Lloyd
2007 Darren Lapthorne
2006 Russell Van Hout
2005 Robbie McEwen
2004 Matthew Wilson
2003 Stuart O’Grady
2002 Robbie McEwen
2001 Steve Williams
2000 Jeremy Hunt

The Route

18 laps of the 10.2km course around Buninyong. The infamous climb of Mount Buninyong Road is the main feature on each lap, topping out after around 2.5km in to the lap.

The Contenders

Full start list available here


This year there is no Simon Gerrans who is out with a broken collarbone, leaving the door open for others. Two names immediately stand out in Cameron Meyer and Simon Clarke. Both have an opportunity to step up here and become a leader. The team only has eight riders this year making it harder for them to control than in the past.

Last year Meyer attacked and easily distanced the field in the final climb, before Gerrans bridged across. Meyer put it all on the line for Gerrans when Cadel Evans and Richie Porte joined them. If Gerrans wasn’t there Meyer could have easily won himself. Has shown he can create a gap and on the line Meyer has a very quick sprint courtesy of his time on the track.

Simon Clarke shot to attention when he won a stage and the mountains jersey at the Vuelta in 2012. Since then he has been quieter and playing a support role. His Herald Sun Tour win last year was a sign he is ready to step up and he has a chance here he might not get again anytime soon. Strong on shorter climbs but the biggest question is can he out sprint Cadel Evans?

In Luke Durbridge the team has another former winner but his focus is on regaining his time trial title. Caleb Ewan won the under 23 title last year and winning in the elite ranks is not out of the question. There is no pressure on him and if things were to come together for a sprint there is a chance Ewan could be there.

Cadel Evans

The first of the final three races left in his career. Throughout his career Evans has shown he will fight to the last metre and with it his last chance to win the title expect him to be motivated. Came close last year when only Simon Gerrans could out sprint him. This year has two teammates in Rohan Dennis and Campbell Flakemore who will be putting everything on the line for him.

Richie Porte

Porte started 2014 strongly finishing third at the National Championships before taking a stage and fourth overall at the Tour Down Under. His season fell apart from there with illness so expect Porte to want to start the season with a win. Tried last year to attack and get away from Gerrans and Evans as he doesn’t have a quick sprint.

Strong support from Nathan Earle who could also be a contender in his own right.

Steele Von Hoff

Thought of as a sprinter and defending his criterium title is a big goal but Von Hoff always performs well in the road race as well. Over the past few years he has finished 13th in 2011, sixth in 2012, third in 2013 and eighth in 2014. Impressive for someone generally considered a sprinter on the hilly course. Has no teammates for support but might be able to work with Avanti to both their advantages. In a small group sprint would be dangerous for the win.

Jack Bobridge

Has stepped back from World Tour level to the continental Budget Forklifts so he can focus on the track. Bobridge won in 2011 and despite a lack of team support finished fifth last year, the first not in the four rider break. With his hour record attempt fast approaching it will be interesting to see how he is traveling.


Drapac brings a strong squad and with the absence of Simon Gerrans on Orica-GreenEDGE they have a bigger role to play this year. In Travis Meyer and Darren Lapthorne the team has two former winners. Bernard Sulzberger is a proven performer with four top 10 finishes to his name. Plus Lachlan Norris has also been a top five finisher in the past.

As well as experience the team has recruited a number of future stars Brenton Jones, Jordan Kerby (2012 under 23 winner), Tim Roe (former BMC), Adam Phelan, and Sam Spokes who are all contenders in their own right.

The experience of Graeme Brown will be invaluable as will the strength of Will Clarke. As one of the biggest and strongest teams in the race others will be looking to them to control.

Michael Rogers

Rogers has not raced the National Championships since 2012 with his best performance second in 2009. Rogers comes in off his best season that saw him claim two stages of the Giro and one at the Tour. Once Rogers heads to Europe he will spend most of his time supporting Alberto Contador making the race one of the few opportunities he will have in 2015.

Adam Hansen

10 Grand Tours in a row and still going strong. One of the peloton’s most popular riders always performs well at Nationals. Former winner of the time trial and third place finisher in the road race. Hansen will be without any team support so will have to decide between going in the early break and waiting for the final attacks. Spent a lot of the race in the break last year but still managed to hold on to claim 13th.

Zak Dempster

There isn’t much Zak Dempster hasn’t done in terms of cycling in Australia. Eighth in 2013 and ninth last year. Dempster might fly under the radar when you look at the names in the field but has shown before that can be to his advantage.


Mitchell Lokelock-Fay steps up to the elite ranks for the first time after winning the Tour of Southland at the end of 2014. Climbers Mark O’Brien and Ben Dyball give the team other options. While Neil Van der Ploeg presents a wildcard. Van der Ploeg was climbing well at the Tour of Southland and on a good day could cope with the Buninyong course.

In past years Avanti has had greater numbers but the teams move to be registered in New Zealand sees their Australian ranks depleted.

Daniel McConnell

A mountain bike World Cup round winner and Commonwealth bronze medallist Dan McConnell returns to the road ahead of a return to the Tour Down Under with Trek Factory racing. Finished second on the final stage of the Herald Sun Tour to Arthur’s Seat in 2013.

Lachlan and Angus Morton

Lachlan stepped back from World Tour level for a chance to ride with his brother Angus who returns to the sport after several years away. The brothers will ride for the US Jelly Belly squad this year and will be looking to get their season off to a good start. Lachlan has proven to be one of the best young pure climbers in recent years.

Ben Hill

Since returning from a two year suspension Hill has been on a path to success. Hill claimed three stage wins at the Tour of Southland at the end of 2014 in New Zealand. 2015 has already started strongly with frequent attacks at the Bay Crits. The undulating course suits him and could be a surprise packet.

Wesley Sulzberger

The former under 23 World Championships silver medallist had a solid 2014 season finishing second at the Adelaide Tour and sixth at the Tour of Tasmania. After being dropped by Drapac, Wesley Sulzberger finds himself on the now continental Navitas Satalyst Racing team. On paper the course suits him and if he can remain in contention has a fast finish.

Other names to watch: Cameron Wurf, Luke Fetch, Jai Crawford, Heinrich Haussler, David Tanner, Cameron Ivory, Pat Lane, Jack Anderson, Aaron Donnelly, Brendan Canty and Cameron Bayly.
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