A FORMER Olympic track hopeful who switched to road racing less than two years ago is celebrating a maiden Melbourne to Warrnambool Cycling Classic crown.
Cameron Scott, who races for ARA Pro Racing Sunshine Coast, held off the talented Brenton Jones and 22-year-old contender Myles Stewart to lift his first 'Warrny' title from three attempts.
Scott, who was a pre-race favourite, delivered on the hype. He took the lead with a late solo move about 1.5 kilometres from the finishing post on Raglan Parade and maintained his advantage, celebrating as he crossed the line three metres ahead of his rivals.
The 24-year-old said he was honoured to claim victory in the 259-kilometre marathon, which started from Avalon Airport in the early hours of Saturday morning.
"It's unreal actually. It's the second-oldest race in the world, I think, one of the oldest, and it just makes it all the more special," Scott said.
"To be able to win here and get on the board among some other great athletes, it's really cool."
Scott, who was born in Wagga Wagga, said the late charge paid dividends.
"I think that move with a kilometre and a half to go (was the difference). I had the BridgeLane rider and the InForm rider, they were just ahead of the bunch," he said.
"I made the decision to jump across to them to make sure I could keep them in check. I looked back and had a bit of a gap so from there, I just committed all the way to the line. It was just a gut decision in the end and it paid off." Scott told The Standard he was enjoying his switch to road cycling after missing out on making the Australian squad for Tokyo 2020.
It's unreal actually. It's the second-oldest (one-day) race in the world, I think, one of the oldest, and it just makes it all the more special.- Cameron Scott
"I was part of the Australia team and unfortunately I just missed out on the Olympic squad. Since then, I've switched my focus completely to the road now," he said.
"I'm really enjoying it. I've enjoyed just giving it everything for the road and not having to worry about the track any more.
"For me, I've always been a bit more of a sprinter so I think I was lacking a bit of endurance. After I fully committed to the road, I just had a lot of time and hours building up that base and just kinda getting the hours in the legs really."
He said things didn't go to plan for his team at the start of the race but felt they were able to adapt well.
"It's such a long race and anything can happen," Scott said. "The conditions can change. We're out there for six hours. It might be windy at the start, but you never know what's going to happen down the road.
"You really just have to adapt to what's happening at the time and make your decisions from there on the spot."
Michael Britton was the A grade winner, while Derek Holland came in first for B grade. Thomas Lombardi took out the C grade division.
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