The peloton assembled at 7 am, ready to take on Day 3, Lorne to Ballarat. We rolled out of beautiful coastal Lorne, only to hit our first climb less than 500 meters in. What a warm-up to get us underway! The big lightweight climbing units powered to the front to stretch their legs as we made our way into Deans Marsh for our first stop for the day. We were ready to rehydrate and stock up on gels, bars, bananas and more fuel at the drinks station.
We started the mid-morning session gathered in our teams as we rolled out together, making our way along the undulating roads. We weaved our way through Winchelsea to enjoy a steady country ride with wind farms and fields for company. We then came upon rolling hills and encountered a massive headwind. The headwind stalked and challenged us right through the ride's morning segment until we arrived weary and ready for a nourishing lunch at Buninyong. We were happy to reach the charming Buninyong Townhall for a rest and a recharge.
After a well-earned lunch, we headed onto Ballarat. The afternoon ride pulled out all of the stops, including a roll through the scenic streets of historic Ballarat and the picturesque views of Lake Wendouree. It was clear our super coach Macca has our backs through all challenges and conditions, including traversing train crossings which bought him back to his Parry Roubaix days.
While only an 11-kilometre stretch to get us through Ballarat and into Creswick, it was a challenge to push through the final kilometres after such a tough day on the legs. Upon arrival in Creswick, the day's riding part was complete at a distance of 154 kilometres travelled, and 1818 metres climbed. It was time to relax, take in a massage, and enjoy an evening meal.
At the evening meal, the following Competition Jerseys were awarded.
- Green' Sprinter's jersey', sponsored by Domain, went to Tom Dean of the Lendlease / Slattery Team.
- Polka dot,' King of the Mountain' Henley jersey went to Jeremy Bree of the Henley Team.
- Orange leader's jersey, sponsored by Pure Storage, went to Kris Daff of the Camlen / Bell Team.
- Black, 'Spirit of Chain Reaction' LSH Auto jersey went to Alex King of the KordaMentha Melbourne Team.
- Navy sponsored by Porter Davis went to Lachlan Castran of Cameron / Simonds Team.