Cycling Australia’s Road National Championships have come to an end for another year, and no one could have picked the results.
Thrilling finishes in the elite road races, local winners, an upset in the elite men’s time trial, and some new events made the long weekend-style program exciting for all five days.
There’s still plenty of potential for the event to grow, according to Cycling Australia’s Kipp Kaufmann – the feedback from the community, athletes, and volunteers has been positive, and he said he was keen to keep the momentum going.
“The key takeaway is that we’re continuing to build, and we’re on the right track with the program.
“It’s the right formula and we need to continue to build on it.”
The time trials, on Monday and Tuesday, were an area to work on, he added.
“The other days were really big, so we’d like to have more people and spectators involved in the time trial,” he said.
“There’s some of the best time trialists in the world, i think we can make a show of them as we do on all the other days.”
Race director Scott McGrory agreed - while numbers are up, they could always be better, by turning Ballarat into a sporting destination.
“Maybe it’s more to do with educating a broader sporting audience that it’s something you need to come and be a part of, it’s a great sporting weekend - that’s the biggest thing we can do,” he said.
“Overall, I think the championships themselves were amazing, and the new format, the super weekend, made it challenging for everyone working on it, because it was so action packed.
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“It was non-stop, and there were so many great results.”
Community members were impressed at the event as well, with improved communication between groups, council, and organisers paying off.
Roger Permezel, part of a community engagement committee, said feedback from traders so far was positive, and there was a good crowd at the movie night on Saturday.
“A few things were in our favour, we didn’t have to contend with bad weather, and the crowds just seemed to be very laid back, they really settled into Buninyong, up on the hill or in the township - the township had more activity, there was a bit more of a balance,” he said.
“After each (new) activity, we’re more enthusiastic than ever to continue the bike race.
“We’re happy to put the effort in as long as we have the continuing event.”
With the depth of talent on show at this year’s RoadNats, and the prospect of riding as Australian champion at the Olympics next year, the 2020 event is set to be even bigger.
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