Nearly 1,500 riders braved chilly Orange weather last Sunday to tackle the 2019 Newcrest Orange Challenge.
Spurred on by a warm welcome from the locals, riders left the heart of Orange behind for the beautiful but demanding regional NSW landscape. The spectacular rolling hills and rough country roads gave a taste of a European classic with an Aussie flavour.
But two riders in particular were riding with extra spring in their saddle (and weight in their wallets) after having taken out the Prologue in the Park event on the evening before the main ride.
Jessica Richards and Christopher Ball were the inaugural champions of the 700m sprint around the new event village at Robertson Park, taking home $1000 cash each and invaluable bragging rights over their fellow riders.
00:37.18 (38.7 km/h)
00:31.56 (45.6 km/h)
The sausages were sizzling on Sunday arvo as we got ready to welcome back the riders with a hot BBQ and a cold drink. Even the sun came out for the party!
Family, friends, locals and support crews gathered to cheer on the 170km and 100km riders as they crossed the finish line, while the 70kms were bused back from Canowindra to join in the celebrations.
Speaking to the Central Western Daily, Bicycle Network General Manager of Events Rebecca Lane said the community spirit helped lift the event.
"We've been really well supported by the local community. It's lovely to be in the heart of Orange to show the visitors what Orange is all about."
Orange Councillor Jason Hamling said the new Robertson Park event village was a great success.
"I think it is showcasing off the event a lot more. It shows off the town a lot better. The town was buzzing last night, the restaurants were full."
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For last Sunday's picnic #ride @sprint_sista and I pedalled 100km in the #newcrestchallenge. What a ride, hill after hill total elevation 1430m, lunch in #Mandurama and a drink at Forest Reefs to refuel for the last charge home. Finished with a smile from more experience gained and because we got a free cider at the end 🍻 - - - - - - #OrangeChallenge #cycling #bikeride #endowarrior #triathlete #triathlon #swimbikerun #racehard #trainhard #trilife #teamshoeyz #teamairofin #airofinathletic #amanzi #amanzigirls #amanziswimwear #fitchicksoz #fitchicksaustralia
Bicycle Network would like to thank everyone who made the 2019 Newcrest Orange Challenge possible including sponsors, riders, supporters and the awesome Orange locals.
As always, we reserve a very special thank you to the more than 200 volunteers and the community groups they represented who gave up their time to help make our Aussie classic a reality for the second year running. We couldn’t do it without you.