Typically the pinnacle of the summer of cycling in Australia, every January thousands of cycling fanatics, and the world’s best pro cyclists flock to the city of Adelaide for the Tour Down Under.
With the cancellation of the WorldTour event, and European based riders unable to participate, race organisers needed to get creative to ensure the 2021 edition of the race went ahead, producing a race perhaps unfamiliar to what Aussie cycling fans have become accustomed to.
On paper, it may seem like compromises were made, with exclusively Australian riders, shorter stages & a truncated race program over 4 days. In reality, this created the perfect storm for fast & furious racing. With shorter profiles opening up the chance of victory to a wide array of riders, and the absence of many WorldTour riders giving Australia’s best domestic talent a chance to shine.
While we didn’t come away with a win from the 4 stages of racing, there were a lot of positives to take from the race. 20-year-old Ben Metcalfe put in a shining performance, finishing 5th overall against arguably the strongest domestic field ever assembled in Australia. Jensen Plowright continued to show why he’s widely considered the next Robbie McEwan, not only holding his own on the flat stages but out-climbing many a lighter rider on the punchier stage 2.
All in all, the first race of the year has given us a lot to look forward to in Season 2021, let’s make waves.
Catch all the action below in our Tour Diaries covering stages 01 through 04!