The fourth and final day of Cape to Cape took the more than 1,000 riders on a 34km blast around the trails of Cape Naturaliste and surrounds, starting and finishing at Wise Wines.
Jon Odams and Brendan Johnston continued as they have all week, claiming the stage and overall victory in the men’s pairs, crossing the finish line in 1:20:32, more than two minutes clear of Reece Tucknott and Adam Blazevic, and Joel Green and Tali Lane Welsh, with second and third again decided by a sprint finish.
“It was awesome, we had a pretty fast start on the road and the fire roads and after we got into some of the fresh single track we played a little bit of a game with them and got a little gap and that was it, just drove it home from there,” said Odams. “We just work so well together, we don’t have to talk too much, we can just look at each other and see how we’re going and whether it’s time to put the hammer down or not, it’s just so much fun.”
Johnston said that the pair worked well together all week, with their teamwork resulting in their impressive performance, leading them to the top step of the podium.
“We just gelled so well this week, we’ve just got so much experience year on year, we just play that every day, we take our turn during the race and it’s been the perfect week for us,” he said. “Last year it was a shame not to be over here because I’ve done it so many times, it’s special for me, to be back and win some more stages and another overall is great.”
Peta Mullens and Jarrod Moroni claimed the final stage victory in the mixed pairs in 1:30:57, just clear of Emma Viotto and Karl Michelin-Beard, with Mitch Docker and Holly Harris third.
The results from Sunday’s final stage were also replicated on the overall podium, with Mullens and Moroni winning their first Cape to Cape as a pair.
“The first day was the toughest but today was the toughest as a duo, I didn’t have very good legs and Jarrod was even trying to push me on the single track to keep me in touch, we just chased all day and we didn’t get back until about 20 minutes to go and even on the road back in we couldn’t see anyone because there were cars behind us and then we had cows in the last paddock,” said Mullens. “It was pretty exciting really, it was a great stage.
“This dynamic of pairs racing is so great, we love the fact that we have a really competitive mixed category, we had three teams within a couple of minutes of each other. Racing solo is all good and well but we do a lot of solo racing throughout the year, so to be able to do it with Jarrod, I just like the pushes,” she said.
Moroni said that the pair were pleased with their first Cape to Cape pair’s victory.
“As Peta said it was a lot harder than I initially thought on paper, the trails were really good, it was short and sharp but it was definitely tough,” he said. “We have never won this stage race before which is surprising, I’ve been here that many times, Peta has won it solo a lot of times but we’ve never done the mixed pairs, it’s a pretty good feeling.”
In the women’s pairs Ella Bloor and Lucie van der Schalk made it four stage wins from four starts to take the overall title, ahead on the final stage of Izzy Flint and Alexandra Durr third, with Verita Stewart and Purdie Long third. Stewart and Long finished second overall, with Flint and Durr third.
“It was so much fun, I felt like we battled for the last few days and we couldn't have had a more perfect day today, we just had so much fun, we rode as hard as we could and the trails were awesome,” said Bloor. “It’s pretty special, Lucie has ridden out of her skin all week, it’s her first time in lycra, her first time racing an XCO race, let alone a stage race, I couldn’t be more proud of her.”
Van der Schalk enjoyed her first foray into mountain bike stage racing, and the trails they traversed over the four days of racing.
“The trails were amazing again, hats off to the trail builders and volunteers out there maintaining them, it was a privilege to ride with Ella, especially when she’s in such amazing form as she is at the moment,” she said. “It’s just amazing to be out here and a part of a community and hang out with Ella and everyone else it’s week. If you’ll have me back I’ll definitely come, I’ve had an absolute ball out there, it definitely won’t be my last.”
When Bruno Wicki crossed the finish line at Wise Wines he added a 14th Cape to Cape to his riding resume, the only person in the field to have completed every event.
“It was a good day, an excellent day, even through the Meelup, it was really good, there was a little bit of a slow train but I was happy with that,” said Wicki. “It was my 14th Cape to Cape and I really enjoyed it, it gets better and better every year. I just had fun out there, next year I have to train a bit more, there were some places where I was a bit behind where I’d like to be, especially up hills, that’s my downfall. Overall it was an absolutely amazing week, the people, the tracks were so clean and groomed, it was amazing, I love it, I’ll be back.”
Cape to Cape – Stage 4 Results
Cape to Cape – General Classification Results
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Tag(s): Cape to Cape