Phelan heads an impressive field... Western Advocate
Phelan heads an impressive field
Regarded as the biggest event on the Cycling NSW calendar, the Blayney to Bathurst (B2B) Challenge looks set to break all records in 2011, with well over 1000 people pre-entering for the Sunday event alone.
After finishing fifth in the 2010 B2B, Phelan signed with International registered team Drapac Porsche and comes to the 2011 event a much higher profile rider.
The Canberra rider has just returned from the Tour of Taiwan, where he held the leader’s jersey early and finished top of the young riders classification and sixth overall.
A regular visitor to Bathurst for the B2B and part of the field for the inaugural NSW Cycling Grand Prix series which visited the city, Phelan will be keen to add to Drapac’s impressive record in the April event.
He can count on Drapac’s captain Stuart Shaw to help him with his bid to win the B2B’s long course event.
A top performer himself, with a number of international wins, Shaw regularly now takes a support role in the races and will be keen to get Phelan in a winning position.
Another rider with good results at Mt Panorama is Peter Hatton. The former Jitter Joes Pro rider was second in a state championship around the Bathurst motor racing circuit a number of years ago and last year finished fourth in the B2B.
Glenn Stojanow also returns to Bathurst after winning the B2B in 2006, while there are a number of very good juniors in the long course race, including interstate rider Jesse Kerrison, who is a national junior champion.
The Bathurst Cycling Club has always had a number of contenders in the B2B long course event, but other race commitments and injury have ruled out the top five ranked members this year.
This leaves Orange’s Michael Troy as the local area’s top contender after he recorded the fastest time in the Bathurst Cycling Club’s Jack McKay Trophy race last weekend.
It’s a different story in the B2B short course, where a host of Bathurst A grade riders will be challenging for the win and looking to build on the 2010 success of Steve Bennett.
Yoni Cross will be back in 2011 after her success in last year’s female category, but she will expect plenty of competition from the likes of international class rider Myfanwy Galloway and a host of other strong female performers, including 2010 NSW rider of the year winner and runner-up, India McLean and Marissa Madden.