Cameron Scott (ARA Pro Racing Sunshine Coast) has won the 106th edition of the Melbourne to Warrnambool with a stinging solo move in the closing minutes.
Scott followed James Whelan (BridgeLane) and Liam Johnston (Inform TMX Make) when the pair punched away from the remnants of the peloton with 1.5 km remaining in the 267 km National Road Series race. When Scott reached the front, he kept going and opened a lead of his own as the bunch thundered into Warrnambool.
It was a close-run thing – Scott just managed to hang on for victory as Brenton Jones (Inform TMX Make) and Myles Stewart (Nero Continental) led in the bunch on the same time as Scott.
For Scott, a track and road rider best known for his sprint, it was a slightly unusual way of winning.
“As far as road results go, it’s probably the best one for me,” Scott said. “It wasn’t a typical way of winning, by myself as opposed to a bunch sprint. Really happy I could pull something off.
“The plan was to sprint for my teammate Craig Wiggins. My legs felt a little heavy and he didn’t have to do much the whole race, so I was going to do the job for him. After I saw James Whelan and Liam Johnston go with about a kilometre and a half to go, I knew I couldn’t let that happen and jumped across to them. I looked back and saw there was a bit of a gap and I just committed.”
Earlier in the day a break of eight riders got clear after roughly 70 km and built a lead that peaked at roughly 6:20. The last of the breakaway riders were caught on the run in to Warrnambool, setting up what looked to be a sprint finish.
The women’s ‘Warrny’ will be raced on Sunday.