February 09, 2014 (Australia) – Simon Clarke has been crowned 2014 Jayco Herald Sun Tour champion, continuing local WorldTour team Orica GreenEDGE’s dominance of the Australian summer of cycling.
Clarke was awarded the victory as the leader going into the final stage after consultations between Victoria Police and race organisers concluded that today’s final stage at Arthurs Seat could not proceed due to extreme weather conditions.
Whilst there was no immediate threat on Arthurs Seat, emergency services including police and fire brigade, had been diverted to other areas under threat across the state.
With results standing as at the conclusion of yesterday’s third stage, former Olympic rower Cameron Wurf (Cannondale Pro Cycling) and the up-and-coming Jack Haig (Avanti Cycling Team) rounded out the podium.
It was a decision that Clarke and his Orica-GreenEDGE teammates respected and accepted.
“Obviously it’s unfortunate, I was keen to race, I think all the riders were, but obviously safety is a priority,” Clarke said.
“I think we all heard that there’s quite a high fire danger today and the important thing is everyone’s safety and the fact that there’s some fires in rural Victoria and services were required there they had to make the call.”
Despite not having the chance to cross the finish line in yellow, the reward of overall victory more than satisfied Clarke.
“I still get to stand on the podium, for us it is still a great win and we’re stoked to have been able to come away winning,” said Clarke.
“Gerro didn’t get the triple-crown, but GreenEDGE got the triple crown.”
“So we’re happy as a team, it’s been a great summer for us and we’ll go to Europe motivated to try and continue that run.
Moving into the overall race lead through victory in Friday’s second stage to Bendigo, Clarke said the form and strength of his teammates this past four days had him confident of retaining yellow on the Tour’s queen stage.
“Our plan was our team’s strength, we got six really strong guys here, and we just had to stick together and work well together and make sure that we come into that last time with myself, Gerro and Cam (Meyer) there by my side to provide support for me.
“That was the plan, who knows what could have happened.”
A King of the Mountain jersey winner at the 2012 Vuelta a España, and seventh in last year’s world championship road race, Clarke was buoyed by his success and ability to grab his chances as Orica-GreenEDGE’s go to man on the road.
“I’ve spent a lot of time supporting Gerro and the important thing for me is when I do get the opportunity to have a bit of free reign and go for myself, I make the most of that,” Clarke said.
“I got that opportunity at the world championships last year and made the most of it, and at the Tour Down Under I was pretty much devoted to Gerro but I got told that here I would have a bit of free reign to try and make the race myself.”
In the immediate afterglow of the final presentations Clarke had a moment to reflect on adding his name to the esteemed honour roll of Australia’s most prestigious stage race.
“That’s probably the most honourable part of winning this race is looking back through at who’s won it and being on this list. That’s something I’ll be very proud of.”
With little time to bask in his success, Clarke boards a flight tomorrow morning for Europe where his first major racing appointment is Paris – Nice in March, before turning his attention to the Ardennes classics.
Race director John Trevorrow said the cancellation was the right decision on what is a tough day for emergency services across the state.
“Simon is a deserving victor of the 2014 Jayco Herald Sun Tour and will sit comfortably amongst an honour roll that features so many of Australia’s great bike riders,” Trevorrow said.
“Whilst we are obviously disappointed that this great stage at Arthurs Seat could not go ahead, we understand the decision made by authorities.
“It is a pretty dark day out there and the safety of the public state wide and our own riders and spectators is by far the priority.
“We had a number of event staff who have left the race to go home having received news that their houses are under threat, so there is a much bigger picture involved here.”
Adding to Orica-GreenEDGE’s individual success through Clark, the Australian WorldTour outfit also claimed the Turbine Best Team Classification.
Continuing his impressive start to 2014, 20-year-old Jack Haig claimed the State Government of Victoria White Jersey as the Tour’s best under 23 rider, adding the honour to the best young rider jersey he won at last month’s Tour Down Under.
20-year-old Victorian Thomas Hamilton (Jayco Australia U23 National Team) won the Budget Forklift King of the Mountain Jersey, while 26-year-old Queenslander John Anderson (Drapac Professional Cycling) claimed the Chain Reaction Cycles Green Jersey as the race’s best sprinter.
1. Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 10:59:17
2. Cameron Wurf (Aus) Cannondale Pro Cycling 00:08
3. Jack Haig (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team 00:11
4. Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin Sharp 01:09
5. Neil Van Der Ploeg (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team 01:21
6. Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling
7. Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 01:22
8. Glenn O’Shea (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate – Team Australia 01:23
9. Cameron Meyer (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
10. William Clarke (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling
11. Mitch Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 01:24
12. Alex Clements (Aus) Jayco Australian U23 01:28
13. Harry Carpenter (Aus) Jayco Australian U23
14. Lachlan Norris (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling
15. Guillaume Boivin (Can) Cannondale Pro Cycling 01:29
16. Timothy Roe (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts 01:30
17. Darren Lapthorne (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling 01:31
18. Rhys Gillett (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris
19. Robert Power (Aus) Jayco Australian U23
20. Calvin Watson (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate – Team Australia 01:32
21. George Bennett (Nzl) Cannondale Pro Cycling
22. James Oram (Nzl) New Zealand Team
23. Patrick Lane (Aus) Synergy Baku Cycling
24. John Anderson (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling 01:34
25. Matthew Clarke (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate – Team Australia
26. Eric Sheppard (Aus) OCBC Singapore Team 01:36
27. Thomas Hamilton (Aus) Jayco Australian U23 01:47
28. Mark O’Brien (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team 01:48
29. Damien Howson (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 01:51
30. Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling 06:50
31. Scott Davies (Gbr) Great Britain National Team 08:18
32. Jeremy Cameron (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris 08:22
33. Joseph Cooper (Nzl) Avanti Cycling Team 08:25
34. Jeffry Louder (Nzl) UnitedHealthcare 08:34
35. Jack Bauer (Nzl) Garmin Sharp 09:46
36. Steele von Hoff (Aus) Garmin Sharp 09:50
37. Bradley White (Nzl) UnitedHealthcare 11:17
38. Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin Sharp 11:42
39. Lachlan Morton (Aus) Garmin Sharp 12:09
40. Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team 14:40
41. Patrick Bevin (Nzl) New Zealand Team 14:43
42. Michael Vink (Nzl) Team Budget Forklifts 14:48
43. Campbell Flakemore (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team 21:27
44. Matthias Krizek (Aut) Cannondale Pro Cycling 21:31
45. Dion Smith (Nzl) New Zealand Team 21:34
46. Chris Jory (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate – Team Australia 21:36
47. Davide Frattini (Ita) UnitedHealthcare 21:47
48. Hugh Carth (Gbr) Rapha Condor JLT 22:11
49. Robert-John McCarthy (Aus) Jayco Australian U23 24:33
50. Matthew Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 25:23
51. Shaun O’Callaghan (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris 25:29
52. Jordan Kerby (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling 25:46
53. Thomas Dekker (NED) Garmin Sharp 26:57
54. Tural Isgandarov (Aze) Synergy Baku Cycling 28:14
55. Kristian Juel (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts 28:37
56. Richard Handley (Gbr) Rapha Condor JLT 31:46
57. Samuel Spokes (Aus) Jayco Australian U23 32:14
58. Karl Menzies (Aus) UnitedHealthcare 32:15
59. Hayden McCormick (Nzl) New Zealand Team 32:17
60. Benjamin Day (Aus) UnitedHealthcare 32:21
61. Nathan Elliott (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris 33:36
62. Tom Scully (Nzl) New Zealand Team 35:09
63. Felix English (Irl) Rapha Condor JLT 35:10
64. Germain Burton (Gbr) Great Britain National Team 35:14
65. Thomas Moses (Gbr) Rapha Condor JLT 35:21
66. Matej Mahoric (Slo) Cannondale Pro Cycling 35:22
67. Ji Wen Low (Sin) OCBC Singapore Team 35:27
68. Elchin Asadov (Aze) Synergy Baku Cycling 35:29
69. Matty Lloyd (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate – Team Australia 35:42
70. Samuel Horgan (Nzl) Team Budget Forklifts 36:04
71. Michael Cuming (Gbr) Rapha Condor JLT 36:08
72. Joshua Prete (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts
73. Jason Spencer (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris 36:29
74. Adrian Hegyvary (Nzl) UnitedHealthcare 37:10
75. Thomas Rabou (NED) OCBC Singapore Team 39:07
76. Daniel Klemme (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling 40:03
77. Christoph Schweizer (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling 40:05
78. Rico Rogers (Aus) OCBC Singapore Team 40:07
79. Umardi Rosdi (Mas) Terengganu Team 40:13
80. Shahrul Mat Amin (Mas) Terengganu Team 40:15
81. Hamish Schreurs (Nzl) New Zealand Team 43:49
82. Harrif Saleh (Mas) Terengganu Team 43:57
83. Christopher Opie (Gbr) Rapha Condor JLT 44:43
84. James Rendall (Aus) African Wildlife Safaris 49:22
85. Christopher Lawless (Gbr) Great Britain National Team 52:17
86. Samuel Witmitz (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts 52:21