23 July 2019


After three days and 330 km of riding, Sydney’s Zoe Clayton-Smith has survived a late charge from Megan Williams, winning the women’s General Classification at Velothon Sunshine Coast by only 15 seconds.

While Zoe established a 15-minute buffer on day one, stage two and three belonged to the 20-year-old Brisbane mountain biker, riding for the Dirty Roadies team.

“My legs have gotten more tired every single day but I have still had a blast, Zoe said. “I think that today I what I would call type 2 fun, where you are hating it at the time but when you finish you love it. I knew the tiny pinches at the end were going to be real tough but I have had an awesome few days.”

“Winning the GC is just the cherry on the top. When I was riding with my partner Alex and another friend Chris I was thinking ‘This is why I am here. To hang out with my pals and have a good time’.”

“Obviously I had the GC in the back of my mind and I knew that stage three was going to be a day about damage control because young Megan was whipping up those hills. I knew she would be getting away from me but it is nice that I was able to keep hold of the leader’s jersey till the end. Albeit by only 15 seconds.”

“This is my second Velothon and it has been great. More people, faster stages, a higher standard of rider and loads of teams and groups riding this year. The bunches make a real difference to the way you ride. I hope the word continues to get out and more people come to experience it next year,” Zoe said.

With two stage wins, the King of the Mountain, a second in the GC and winning the Mixed Teams competition riding with her mates, Megan said she had a blast in her first Velothon.

“I felt pretty good to start with but the last KOM was one too many hills for me. At 125km in there was a 25 per cent pinch and I did everything I could to stay on, but I dropped off and unfortunately I had to grovel all the way home.”

“When I thought it was getting too hard I just looked sideways and saw that everyone else was hurting just as much. I have never done a three-day road race before, but it was tough and heaps of fun. The scenery was great as well, so I really enjoyed myself.”

“I am in the mixed team with some mates (Dirty Roadies) so I really just came here to check out the Sunshine Coast and get a great training session on some lovely roads. I really didn’t have any more expectations than that, and to have some fun. I would definitely come back, I loved it. My team mates are suffering now but I am sure they are having fun too,” Megan said.

The Kiwi riders continued their dominance on stage three with the Spoken Team cleaning up the Men’s Team category and rider Mike Gilbert narrowly taking the stage honours from the men’s GC winner Alex Heaney.

“We definitely didn’t know what to expect coming over. We didn’t know who anyone was, so we came over prepared to go hard and we did that so we are pretty happy,” Alex said. ”The main goal was to come over and win the teams and put the team on the map. We have done that and done everyone proud. We have loved it.”

“It has been awesome. The organisation is unreal and it is definitely something that we would come back to. The group that came over have absolutely loved it. We came over to race and ride our bikes but we also came over to have fun and everyone has loved it.”

“It has been such a cool atmosphere after the day’s riding. We would just like to thank all the volunteers and everyone involved, Toby and everyone running the event. It is a lot of time and effort and we very much appreciate it. We head back tomorrow night so we are just having a bit of fun tonight and going for a bit of roll up the coast in the morning and have a coffee and fly on home to the bad weather,” he lamented.

First across the line in the 76km One Day ride was Kiwi Grand Masters Cleve Brown and Tinsley Janes (TJ) from Auckland wearing the biggest smiles from ear to ear.

“We have hills and terrible weather, so when we come to a place like this it is just paradise,” Cleve said. “It is perfect, it is warm and sunny smooth roads. My mate TJ here has bought himself an apartment in Mooloolaba and that gives me somewhere to stay and we had heard about this event through social media and we thought ‘Crickey, why don’t we come over and spend a few days, ride around, do a race and have a great time. So that is what we are doing.”

TJ is Mooloolaba’s newest Kiwi import and he had the time of his life out on the beautiful Sunshine Coast roads.

“It was just brilliant out there, it is a superb place to ride in, good signage, couldn’t go wrong. Our winter is just cold wet and miserable, so my plan is to stay here all winters now. I am applying to become a 49 per cent Australian,” he laughed.


3 Day: Stage 3 - 137km


Pos    Cat     Name                                Gun Time

1        Team  Mike Gilbert (#662)            03:26:33

2        Team  Alex Heaney (#664)           03:26:40

3        Open  Christopher Ball (#110)      03:27:22


Pos    Cat     Name                                Gun Time

1        Team  Megan Williams (#628)      03:34:21

2        Open  Zoe Clayton-Smith (#494)  03:46:10

3        Masters Emma Mccosh (#472)     03:59:01


3 Day: GC


Pos    Cat     Name                                Gun Time      Stage 1          Stage 2         Stage 3

1        Team  Alex Heaney (#664)           07:55:17       02:18:09          02:10:27       03:26:40

2        Team  James Harvey (#663)         08:00:41       02:20:16          02:10:26       03:29:59

3        Team  Matthew Kasher (#618)      08:07:37       02:19:42          02:17:24       03:30:31


Pos    Cat     Name                                Gun Time      Stage 1          Stage 2         Stage 3

1        Open  Zoe Clayton-Smith (#494)  08:33:35       02:25:28          02:21:55       03:46:10

2        Team  Megan Williams (#628)      08:33:50       02:40:44          02:18:43       03:34:21

3        Open  Hayley Jones (#467)          09:07:48       02:33:41          02:25:42       04:08:24