NZ cyclist Josh Atkins third after opening stage

Last updated 21:07 04/01/2013

Relevant offers

Other Sports

Kiwi rowers taste disappointment mixed with joy at world championships in France Los Angeles 2024 Olympics bid means IOC head Thomas Bach gets what he wants UCI have important role to play for 2022 Commonwealth Games to feature track cycling New Zealander Paul Lasike 'keeping the faith' after surviving first Cardinals cut Kereyn Smith says election to Commonwealth Games committee great timing Double triumph for Jesse Campbell in Ireland keeps him in Olympic contention Los Angeles named US bid candidate for 2024 Summer Olympic Games San Francisco 49ers hopeful Jarryd Hayne makes Madden 16 video game Durban to host 2022 Commonwealth Games Glendowie powerboat racer wins driver of the year

Talented New Zealand cyclist Josh Atkins defied oppressive heat to sit third on the general and under-23 classification after the opening road stage of the Jayco Herald Sun Tour in Melbourne today.

The 20-year-old from Christchurch is 17 seconds behind Aaron Donnelly, who outsprinted fellow Australian Calvin Watson and Aitkens at the end of a 147.7km feat of endurance from Sunbury to Bendigo.

Temperatures exceeded 40degC en route, a heatwave that forced organisers to purchase every bottle of water available at the Redesdale general store after race supplies were exhausted about midway through a stage which started two hours earlier than originally scheduled in a bid to protect riders. 

The tour-opening prologue winner Jordan Kerby finished in 25th place, 2 min 35sec behind Donnelly (4hr 9min 57secs).

James Oram was the next best New Zealander in 13th overall, 2min 52sec behind the leader. Westley Gough (+5min 21sec), Tom Scully (+6min 42sec), Mike Northey (+8min 52sec) and Greg Henderson (+8min 53sec) are also inside the top 50 of the 104-strong field.

It was a tough day for retirement-bound former New Zealand Olympian and Tour de France rider Julian Dean, who is 73rd on the GC, 16min 30sec behind Donnelly.

The tour continues tomorrow with a 146.6km journey from Mitchelton Winery to Healesville and ends on Sunday with a 93km trawl from Moonah Links to Arthurs Seat.

Ad Feedback

- Fairfax Media

Special offers
Opinion poll

Will Shane Cameron beat Kali Meehan on Saturday?

For sure. Cameron will knock him out.

It will be close but I think Cameron on points.

Meehan will knock him out. This is his last fight.

I'm tipping Meehan to win on points.

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content