It was an exciting day for the National Road Series with a maiden win for Van D’Am Racing P/B Butterfield and Jason Thomason who drove up the finishing straight solo to claim a dominant victory.
It was a tightly contested battle for the podium with Samuel Hill (Phoenix Cycling Collective) and Patrick Burt (Drapac EF P/B Cannondale Holistic) taking the honours. The two riders, along with Thomason (Van D’Am Racing P/B Butterfields) and Christopher Miller (Nero Kom Financial Advice), held a fiercely competitive contest heading into the last 10-kilometres.
An early crash and numerous flat tyres caused chaos and carnage early in the piece as the cyclists pedalled into stage four, however, the peloton steadily regrouped as they faced the undulating, rugged 92.9-kilometre course from Heywood to Casterton.
With the group dividing and coming back together, with approximately 15-kilometres to go the race began to spark.
Jensen Plowright (Drapac EF P/B Cannondale Holistic) and Alexander Holden (Anchor Point South Coast) took their chances at the front with Miller and Hill before re-joining the peloton. Miller andHill continued their charge, creating a lead of 40-seconds as Thomason and Burt chased hard behind.
As the Bennelong Swiss Wellness boys started to control the front of the increasingly lagging peloton, Thomason and Burt’s huge efforts paid off. An admirable chase down saw the pair join Miller and Hill, with the leading quartet’s lead pushing out to nearly three minutes less than 10-kilometres from the finish line.
As the three front riders crossed the Glenelg River and took a sharp turn 400-metres from the finish line, it became evident that the first time NRS winner Jason Thomason was home and hosed, shortly followed by the close battle for second and third in Hill and Burt.