Lauren Kitchen got the Roxsolt Racing team off to a fantastic start at the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic in Geelong today after she secured the green sprinters jersey and finished second on the stage behind race winner Chloe Hosking (Wiggle Down Under). Lauren finished fourth in the first intermediate sprint of the day and first in the second and final intermediate sprint to secure her lead in the sprint classification ahead of tomorrow’s Eastern Park stage two.
Lauren, who is on the comeback from injury after having undergone major surgery on her left leg in October, said she was really happy with how the Roxsolt team performed and her personal performance as well.
“I felt really good, it was a good hit out and I’m really looking forward to the rest of the week with Roxsolt,” Lauren said after the stage.
Kitchen was part of a five rider break which escaped with a little more than 20 minutes to go on the Ritchie Boulevard hotdog circuit raced in downtown Geelong this afternoon. The break worked well to establish a sizable gap over the chasing peloton until the closing laps of the 45 minute event when tactics started to come into play.
“I was really aware that if it was going to come back together we could line up Kimbers (Kimberley Wells) for the sprint so I was trying to rest and recover in the break away knowing that we had Kimberley behind,” Lauren said.
“We were really keen to just go out and have a hard race given the race was being shown on national TV. Our goal was to have a podium and also to take the sprint jersey so we’re happy to have achieved both those goals,” she said.
Team owner and director Kelvin Rundle was all smiles after the stage. 2015 is the second year he has entered a team in the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic and he’s attracted some of the best Australian riders in the peloton to his squad including 2014 Australian Female Road Cycling of the Year, Tiffany Cromwell and and 2013 National Criterium Champion, Kimberley Wells.
“We’re just looking to have some fun and to show some great racing. Today the team road a fantastic race. Jo Hogan and Carlee Taylor did some massive work on the front and Jo was actually solo for a quarter of the race. It was exciting racing,” Kelvin said.