December 28, 2018 4 comments
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2018 in Review Part II

By Lachie Ambrose

This is a continuation of a piece published on the 26/12/2018 – please find the link here if you missed it!

Thank you!

It’s customary for teams to thank those who supported them. And this is no exception. We thought instead of adding it as an addendum, we’d put it front and centre for once. The list of people we need to thanks is endless. But we feel that the following deserve special mentions:

Shawn Butterfield, and the whole team at Butterfields.

Shawn was on board with what we were trying to achieve from day one and has been an unwavering supporter of our processes and philosophies. Without the support of Butterfields, we would not have been able to get off the ground, and their support is the backbone of our continued commitment to the sport. So thanks Shawn, we owe you one!

David Jonker & Appselec

Appselec came on board as a sponsor for 2018. This support facilitated our continued growth as a team and as people. For 2019, David went back on his initial plan to support the team for one year, to not only continue into 2019 but to step up to fill the role as our joint major sponsor. For this, we are incredibly grateful. We know it’s probably not the cheapest way to get a set of team kit – so hopefully, we can do Appselec proud in 2019!

Red Art Rojomoma

A family connection brought RedArt to the team, but with their commitment to sustainable, high-quality wines is such a great fit for what we are about. If you are an Adelaide local or are coming down for the TDU, why not book in a tasting around Stage 2 of the Men’s TDU – we promise it won’t disappoint!

Peak Super

Peak Super came on board at an unusual time through our digital offerings, and we were happy to be able to help them spread their message. Stay tuned as they keep helping us with our activations through early 2019.

The Rest of the World

So, we don’t have time to name everyone, but there are so many people that have helped. Those who gave up time to come on tour, coaches, mechanics, friends, family and the community all contribute to what the team is, and every little contribution counts. Even reading this thank you note contributes to the team’s viability. So, from the bottom of our hearts – thank you!

So what’s next?

Quite honestly, more of the same. Every year we have made progress. It’s true that that progress may not be as rapid as we’d like – but progress (and particularly sustainable progress) takes time.

That doesn’t mean that we are going to do things exactly the same – we are (slightly) older/wiser, and we live in an evolving world, so running the same processes that we ran four years ago just doesn’t cut it. We need to keep pushing to be the best that we can be, and look to follow (or create) best practice – and that best practice certainly doesn’t come from within cycling.

What I’m looking forward to in 2019:

Sprint Stages

I argued at the start of this year that we had some solid potential for a lead-out train. We just didn’t have a sprinter. In our new signing Henry, we feel we may have filled this hole. Already shaking it up at Supercrit, just missing the podium at the tender age of 16, we feel we might be on to something here.

The Powercor Melbourne to Warrnambool

As a bike racer, I loved this race. At the 2017 edition, we committed with several of the boys riding out of their skin to control a 270km bike race. The only problem was that the plan fell apart in the last 250m – and we came home with very little. So, we are excited to fix that wrong.

 The new route should make it interesting, but we think the bigger factor will actually be the temperature. October is never going to be that balmy. But late February could deliver a 40-degree day.

Tour of Tassie

Due to it falling in the middle of exams, for the past three years we haven’t managed to make it to the Tour of Tasmania. We are excited that CA has managed to manoeuvre it to a time of year we can get a team on the line.

Continued Development

The first year we raced in the National Road Series, we spent a lot of time in the grupetto. In 2017, we were starting to get it together, but our inconsistency let us down. Even so, mid-bunch was standard. In 2018, we felt that we were finally getting it together. The team rode good position 80% of the time, and we worked cohesively. As a result, we were putting riders in the final selections, and having most of the team finish in the first third of the field.

I feel that with another year under our belt the boys will be able to step it up another level and be in a position to not only be in the action but have a say in how it plays out. Let hope for some more overly emotional live streams from the car!

A few goodbyes

We hate saying goodbyes, but it is an unfortunate part of any sport! First up Seb Presley. Seb joined the team midway through the year. From the start, he impressed not only on the bike but off the bike as well. A talented rider, with a considerable work ethic and an obliging nature, should see him go far. He’s signed with UCI Continental Team Oliver’s Real Food Racing (they’re some of the good guys – so make sure you go follow them!) for 2019. Best of luck Seb!

Tom Allford – Tom was one of our original boys. Originally from Mildura, Tom spent the first half of 2018 in Belgium. Unfortunately, things didn’t go as well as he had hoped and combined with a few other factors, this led Tom to take time off the bike during the second half of 2018. Tom, like Seb, will always be one of the family. Don’t be surprised if he works his way back into blue if things go his way in 2019.

 

Thanks again for following our progress – we still have a big kit reveal to do before the end of the year so make sure you don’t miss that. We loved this year’s kit, and 2019’s is even better.

 

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4 Comments on “

  1. Excellent summary and insight to the team and the domestic cycling scene. The progress of the team has been good to see over the last few years and it’s great to see Van D’am continuing to support the bridge between junior racing and the seniors while supporting the riders educational pursuits

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