I recently read an article articulating the case for Serena Williams to be recognised as the greatest sports person ever. I am not really a tennis fan, and even if I was it would still be difficult to compare athletes across sports and across gender. The story did get me thinking, however, about Marianne Vos and how her career should sit in the overall scheme of things. How does Marianne’s career compare to that of Serena’s and how does her career sit objectively against her male counterparts in cycling? 2019 has been another stellar year for Marianne with numerous victories including La Course, Tour of Yorkshire and the Tour of Norway. At times this year it has looked like, at 32 years of age, she is actually getting stronger. Those victories and others this year can be be added to what is arguably the longest list of individual victories in any sport. But the list is incomplete, as it lacks a grand tour victory, simply because women’s cycling has never had one. If the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and La Vuelta had run grand tours for women, how many would Marianne have potentially won? In my mind the answer is at least six or seven and in all likelihood probably more. Serena will likely retire as the greatest tennis player of all time and if bike races gave equal status to men and women then potentially Marianne would retire (in 2028 🙂 ) with the same mantle in cycling and potentially with an athletic palmarès that would likely never be matched. B.M.
*Marianne Vos will be riding with the EY team in TOMR10.
He is the Captain of the Australian Team that will take on the world this Sunday and he could be the captain of your team in the Tour of Margaret River. After his stellar performance in the Vuelta and leading the Australian Road Team at the World Champs, Simon Clarke will be heading to Western Australia to participate in TOMR . Simon will be one of the featured riders in One More Ride’s TOMR campaign, along with OMR Co-Founder and retired professional Andrea Nicosia. The great news for punters is that if you don’t already have a team, OMR is offering the chance to race in a team with Simon! Like all of the pro riders in the Tour, Simon will be able to scale his output to match his team. We recommend leaving him on the front for slightly longer stints in the Team Time Trial.
The reigning champion of the Giro Rosa and La Course by Tour de France, Annemiek van Vleuten, will return to Western Australia in early November to race in the the 2018 Tour of Margaret River for Team EY. For most of the year Annemiek has been battling fellow countrywoman (and close friend) Marianne Vos to be the UCI Number 1 ranked rider of the World Tour. Her stunning victory at La Course was perhaps the most exciting race we have seen so far this year across both the men’s and women’s pelotons (watch the video if you would like to argue.) One of the finest female cyclists of all time, Annemiek has a happy go lucky and approachable personality that made her one of the most popular pro riders amongst the amateur riders competing in the 2017 TOMR. Stay tuned for a personal message from Annemiek as she looks to help us build the number of female riders participating in the Tour. EY is a major sponsor to the Tour and a company dedicated to providing equal opportunities for women, we think a perfect fit all round.
Photo: Beau Le Fort, 2018 Giro Rosa
The universe may have conspired to keep him away in 2017, but it’s official…Jens Voigt will be at the 2018 Tour of Margaret River!
Famous for being one of world’s most tenacious breakaway specialists, and admired for being one of cycling’s most genuine and amiable personalities, we believe Jens is the perfect fit for the Tour. We can’t wait for you to meet him!
Your first chance is at the Medio Fondo with Jens on Thursday November 8th. All teams registered in the 2018 Tour receive automatic entry to this pre-race ride. This is your ideal opportunity to meet and ride with Jens away from the pressure of racing, which starts the next day.
SHUT UP! Jens is coming to the Tour!
Find out more about Racing the Tour
Find out more about riding in The Breakaway with Jens
The first stage of the 2018 Tour will will depart from the picturesque township of Balingup and wind its way along the river and through the serene Blackwood Valley to eventually deliver riders to the Event Village in Nannup. This 42km Stage will be conducted as a team time trial with results used to classify teams into racing divisions for the rest of The Tour. The road is constantly undulating, riders who participated in the 2017 Tour will remember this route from Stage Four. The overall 2018 Tour has race logistics similar to those of 2017 with a total of two transfers required. For teams that can not muster the required support crew to coordinate transfers we will be offering a return shuttle service that can be booked online as you register.
Photo: Beardy McBeard 2017 TOMR
It’s one thing to ride alongside of the world’s best riders…it’s quite another when you are able to have that image of yourself captured by one of the world’s best cycling photographers. This year Marcus Enno, aka Beardy McBeard will be joining us at the Tour to help us capture the best possible images of the race. Take a few moments to amble through Beardy’s images of this year’s Tour de France and Giro and you will see why we are so excited to have him as a part of our media team in 2017.
“Beardy’s Caravan captures the unique spirit of one of cycling’s true characters. Part adventurer, part cycling photographer, and part enigma, there is only one Beardy McBeard – and only one Beardy’s Caravan.”
Story: Andrew Amos Photo: TDW Sport.
Annemiek van Vleuten’s crash at Rio was horrific. However, it only seemed to spur her on. Only one month after breaking her spine during the Olympics Road Race, she was back on her bike and on form. She finished her 2016 season with a win in her return race, the Lotto Belgium Tour, ahead of Marianne Vos. But in 2017, she’s gone from great to legendary. She has proven herself as one of the best climbers in the Women’s World Tour, taking stages at the Giro Rosa on slopes of 27%, winning atop the Col d’Izoard in La Course, and conquering the hilly Individual Time Trial at Worlds in Bergen. In all her Women’s World Tour participations, she has only failed to finish in the top 5 twice. She finished 2nd on the Women’s World Tour rankings behind her compatriot – and winner of that fateful Rio Road Race – Anna van der Breggen. In her homeland of the Netherlands, she won the Boels Rental Ladies Tour in September, as well as the National Time Trial Championships. As an Orica-Scott rider however, and as an ambassador for Ride WA, her second home is Australia. She loves riding Down Under, winning the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race back in January. Her return to form is nothing short of spectacular, producing her best season ever in 2017. She finishes it off in November at the Tour of Margaret River, as a World champion, where you can expect her to blow everyone away up the Mur du Hay.
Cove Legal Racing has selected Australian cricketing superstar Brad Hogg in their 2017 TOMR Team. With a mix of exuberance and extraordinary skills “Hoggy” has spun his way into Australian cricketing folklore by his virtue of being able to take wickets at crucial points in big games. How that athleticism and energy translates to cycling will be of great interest in November, we can almost hear the chants of “Hoggy, Hoggy” on The Mur de Hay. Brad was recently announced as an Ambassador for Lifeline and Cove Legal has supported Youth Focus for many years, so the CLR team will be also be riding this year to help increase awareness of mental health issues.
It’s six months before the Giro ‘d Italia arrives on Irish shores and amongst the numerous tasks needing completion before the biggest event in the history of the Island sits the most fearsome task of all, someone has to travel around to all of the Churches and inform them that they will not be able to conduct their normal services when the race comes through their respective villages. Who do you send? They have to be strong, but not abrasive, they have to be firm but not pushy and they will have to drink twenty-nine cups of tea in a day and consume cakes and biscuits beyond measure.
Since his retirement from the pro peloton, Stephen Gallagher has quietly earned himself the reputation as one of the best race organisers in Europe. It is with great enthusiasm and anticipation that we welcome him to our TOMR team as our Race Director for 2017.
First up on Stephen’s agenda is to secure longer sections of closed roads to move us all closer to the Pro Tour experience.