PORTLAND’S Andrew Lindsey knows well the taste of cycling success.
At 21, he became one of the youngest winners of the Melbourne to Warrnambool Cycling Classic and in a decorated career was on top of the podium more than once. Now he’s turned his focus to helping young cyclists in the south-west emulate his success.
Lindsey directs the Anchor Point South Coast Cycling Team, a squad established in 2011 to help foster talented riders in the region and give them experience of riding in a team environment and take the first step to reaching the top of the sport.
“I wanted to do something for the kids in this corner of Victoria,” Lindsey said.
“One thing led to another and these boys started to go all right, so this year we took out a National Road Series (NRS) licence.” The team has entered an eight-man squad for this week’s NRS event Tour of The Great South Coast which gets under way in Mount Gambier today.
Included in the line-up will be Lindsey’s son Dylan, Horsham’s Alan and Todd Satchell and Damien Cook, Warrnambool’s Mark Scouller, Port Fairy’s Nathan McLaren and Hamilton’s Clive Silcock.
“This is our third year and we are nearly at the stage where we will be looking for some top-10 finishes in some stages. That’s our aim,” Lindsey said.
“Obviously Avanti and Budget Forklifts are the powerhouse teams of the series and the field looks good on paper.
“But we are not here merely to make up numbers. If we can get our boys into bunch sprints, anything is possible.
“I love what we are doing and this year is just another step for us. This tour is going to be good. We can hardly wait for it to start.”
Lindsey’s 1983 Melbourne to Warrnambool victory off the 40-minute handicap is one of the fastest on record. He out-sprinted his more experienced rivals to win by five lengths in six hours, 30 minutes and eight seconds.
He went into the race in peak condition after riding 30,000 training kilometres in Europe and at home in a 12-month lead-up.
“Up to then it was the biggest day of my life and I think about it frequently,” he said.
“I went into the race full of confidence, knowing if the cards fell my way I would be a chance because I had everything 100 per cent right. It’s surprising how often it comes up in conversation. It certainly was a good day out.”