AusCycling | Australian National Team races in the inaugural UCI Cycling Esports World Championships

Australian National Team races in the inaugural UCI Cycling Esports World Championships

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Photo Courtesy Zwift


The 2020 UCI Cycling Esports World Championships, held on Zwift in the virtual Wataopia course, commenced in the early hours of Thursday morning, with thirteen riders representing the Australian National Team.

Over 130 riders participated from all over the globe to cover the 50KM course which included over 450 meters of climbing.

In the Women’s Elite race, 47 riders took to the start line with six from the Australian National team. Bre Vine (StepFWD Suzuki), Justine Barrow (VIC/Roxsolt Attaquer) and Sarah Gigante (VIC/Team TIBCO – SVB) sat comfortably in the front group, constantly changing positions in the top 10.

It was always going to come down to the final 900 meters with the steep incline bound to separate the pack. Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (RSA) and Gigante broke away to form a three second gap with 700 meters to go, Gigante was on the wheel of Pasio for the final push but just missed out on the gold medal by 0.064 seconds. Close behind Gigante was Vine who finished 10th and Barrow who finished 13th.

“I had great fun racing in the first ever eSports World Championships last night. It was a super cool experience to pull on the green and gold kit alongside five strong teammates,” said Gigante, after the race. “We had a great team plan and had gone over the course multiple times together in training prior to the event, which really helped our cohesion and confidence during the race.”

“The pace had backed off completely coming into the final, which didn't suit my strengths since I am much more of an endurance-based rider, so I wasn't really expecting to do very well at all in a 1.5 minute flat out effort. “

“I thought at one point that I might even have a shot at winning, but Ashleigh was too strong and ended up beating me by just 0.064 seconds. I was very happy with silver though and proud of how the team rode, especially considering we were racing at 2am!”

For the full results, head to the link below.

https://www.zwiftpower.com/events.php?zid=1316048

In the Men’s Elite peloton, 78 riders participated in the race for the pixelated rainbow striped jersey, including seven Australians. It was a quick start with lots of riders dropping off quickly due to the hard pace set over climbs. Team BridgeLane's Benjamin Hill (ACT) and Israel Cycling Academy’s Freddy Ovett (VIC) featured in the breakaway pack. The final climb was always going to decide it, Germany’s Jason Osborne timed his effort well and took out line honors. Hill finishing 5th and Ovett finishing 8th.

For the full results, head to the link below.

https://www.zwiftpower.com/events.php?zid=1316047

To view the race, head to the link below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYNmq9cIRyA&feature=youtu.be

Final Results:

Elite Women

1. Ashleigh Moolman Pasio RSA 1:13:27

2. Sarah Gigante AUS +0.064s

3. Cecilia Hansen SWE +1.24s

10. Bre Vine AUS +6.11s

13. Justine Barrow AUS +8.99s

31. Bree Wilson AUS +01.47

37. Jess Pratt AUS +02.06

39. Vicki Whitelaw AUS +2.16

Elite Men

1. Jason Osborne GER 1:05:15

2. Andrew Foldager DEN +1.74s

3. Nicklas Pedersen DEN +2.09s

5. Ben Hill AUS AUS +2.55s

8. Freddy Ovett AUS +3.06s

52. Cooper Sayers AUS +07.28

54. Jack Haig AUS +11.21

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