Sports

The Men’s NRS Division 1 start peddling at the start of the 2022 CWP Renewables Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic. Image: Emma Pritchard

Cycle of determination

Emma Pritchard

 

It is one of the toughest sporting events in Australia.

A challenging 228km journey that physically and mentally tests the endurance, courage and mindset of every participating athlete.

On May 8, 350 competitors across four divisions took their places on the starting line ahead of the 2022 CWP Renewables Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic, each one determined to conquer the challenges that lay ahead and etch their name on the honour roll of the great race.

As he prepared to take his position in Division 3, cyclist Richard Brown told the Clarence Valley Independent he was looking forward to the ride.

Representing the Sydney based Parklife Cycling Club, Mr Brown grew up in the local area and said the annual event was a race that had been on his list for a long time.

“I can’t wait,” he said.

“It’s been a long build-up and there’s a bit of anxiety, but we’ve got cracking weather and it looks like conditions will be perfect.

“I’ve done a couple of other big rides, but this is my first Grafton to Inverell and I’m really looking forward to it.”

While Mr Brown finished 14th in Division 3: Men Individual Classification behind local cyclist Alex Beedie representing the Grafton Wheelmen Best Western Parkside, he said it was a great day and he plans to compete in future Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classics.

Melbourne competitor Drew Morey from Team BridgeLane won the 2022 CWP Renewables Men’s NRS Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic in a time of 5:53:39, narrowly defeating his training partner Mark O’Brien from InForm TMX Make.   

Last year’s runner-up Sam Hill from Nero Continental finished third.

Following the event, Mr Morey said it was his biggest race win in Australia, and he was happy to share the moment with his training partner.  

Queenslander Alexandra Martin-Wallace from ARA Pro Racing Sunshine Coast won the 2022 CWP Renewables Women’s NRS Gibraltar to Inverell des Femmes in a time of 3:57:34 and became the second cyclist to add her name to the honour roll following the event’s inauguration last year.

Alexandra Martin-Wallace from ARA Pro Racing Sunshine Coast celebrates winning the 2022 CWP Renewables Women’s NRS Gibraltar to Inverell des Femmes on May 8. Image: Bear Liang/Veloshotz

Event Director Chris Thompson said despite a slight headwind, the Men’s NRS Division went within 10 minutes of breaking the race record.

“It’s an iconic event, and we had great representation with a high number of competitors travelling interstate to compete,” he said.

“The event will be bigger and better in 2023.”

For the full list of results, please visit www.graftontoinverell.com.au

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