Ruby Roseman-Gannon (Liv-AlUla-Jayco) won a rain-soaked U23/Elite women’s road race at the Federation University Australian Road National Championships, relentless in her efforts to stay at the front of the race which she ultimately claimed in a small bunch sprint.
Lauretta Hanson (Lidl-Trek) was second in the dash to the line, crossing ahead of Alex Manly (Liv-AlUla-Jayco) who came third in the 104.4km race. Grace Brown (FDJ-Suez) was fourth. breaking a four year run of podium appearances.
Neve Bradbury (Canyon-SRAM) took out the under 23 title, being the only rider in that category in the lead group of 11, while Haylee Fuller (Team BridgeLane) took the U23 silver as last years winner Ella Simpson (ARA Skip Capital) claimed bronze.
The U23 elite and women’s titles were decided over 9 laps of an 11.6km circuit, with each including the pivotal Mount Buninyong Road climb and a total of more than 200m gain in elevation and a maximum gradient of 8.4%.
The combined U23 and elite women’s road race – which started with a minute of silence in the memory of Melissa Dennis (née Hoskins) – was the second last event of the 2024 Australian Road World Championships which has been held in and around Ballarat for nearly two decades, but will head elsewhere in 2025.
This year could also mark the last year that the U23 road title is decided within a combined race, with AusCycling saying that the category could get its own stand alone competition as soon as 2025.
More to come …