Kaden Groves has sprinted to his first Australian Criterium Championship title after an impressive ride by Team BikeExchange, which saw Luke Durbridge also pick up the bronze medal in Ballart.
Groves attacked across to his teammate Durbridge inside the final 10 laps, with the pair staying away to the finish with Nick White (Team BridgeLane) for company. There was no stopping Groves as the sprint opened up and the 22-year-old sprinted past his rival to take the victory.
Team BikeExchange had been on the front foot from the opening lap with Lucas Hamilton and Alex Edmondson both powering to the head of the peloton on Sturt Street. The squad made sure they were represented in every attack over the course of the 40 lap race, with Durbridge and Groves making the decisive move in the closing stages to seal the win.
“I had to work pretty hard there, but the boys did a really good job and once it started getting hard, I knew Durbo was at the front and I knew if I could get to him he would bury himself to keep us away.
“We always wanted two of us in the move, preferably a fast guy and someone else to work. I didn’t actually realise I was alone when I got across, I was with Pat Lane and we made it four off the front and from there I knew Durbo was going to keep us away.
“Being an Australian team, it’s always nice to race in Aus and it’s a first national crit title for me, it hasn’t really sunk in yet, but I’m pretty stoked.”
Matt Wilson (Sports Director):
“Everything went to plan. We wanted to make it a really aggressive, hard race and try and put our big rivals under pressure.
“The guys did an awesome job, especially Durbo, he was super and we got the win. It’s the first win for Kaden in 12 months so it was great for him to get the win, get that monkey off his back and head to Europe with a win under his belt.”
Australian Criterium Championships 2021 – Results:
1. Kaden Groves (Team BikeExchange) 1:00:15
2. Nick White (Team BridgeLane) +0:00
3. Luke Durbridge (Team BikeExchange) +0:05
Photo Courtesy of Cycling Tips.