Cyclist #37: Victoria’s epic Alps

A cycling wonderland emerges when the snow melts away. Cyclist journeys to Victoria to ta…

A cycling wonderland emerges when the snow melts away. Cyclist journeys to Victoria to take on some of Australia’s most stunning ascents.

From the editor,

It’s taken far longer than it should have, but we’ve finally managed to piece it all together: a Big Ride in the picture-perfect holiday destination of Byron Bay. Don’t get us wrong, we’ve travelled to this summer hot spot before. However, it’s taken until this issue for us to finally bring the bike and camera man along for the trip. Of course, it helps to have a fresh-faced company like Lifecycles Travel now servicing the area from their HQ in nearby Lennox Head, and with their help – and a few gravel-ready bikes on hand – we’ve really been able to showcase the stunning Byron hinterland in all its glory. A word of advice if you plan to follow our lead: bring your biggest stomach along for the ride, because this place has far too many great food spots for just one day.

Take a bite of the Byron hinterland*.

*download the Strava route.

From the sea we venture to the mountains for a multi-day ride around the Victorian High Country. You may recognise some of these roads from the tough Peaks Challenge (March 10, 2019), but this route takes it in at a far more tranquil pace; oh, and in the opposite direction. Ever ridden your favourite loop in reverse? That’s how it felt riding with the crew from Wide Open Road. It blew our minds.

Next, a place you may not expect to deliver great cycling (but how wrong you would be): Hong Kong – we’ve been here before. At first glance it might be all bright lights, flashy cars and soaring skyscrapers, but dig a little deeper – or, we should say, ride a little farther – and you’ll find an astonishing assortment of riding spots to explore.

As always, this issue doesn’t start and end at the Big Rides. We go behind the scenes with Boels-Doelmans, the powerhouse squad that dominated the Women’s WorldTour in 2018. We expect them to do much the same in 2019. But as fast as they are, none of them come close to Denise Mueller-Korenek: the fastest rider in the world. Cyclist gets the full story behind Denise’s record-breaking ride (clue: it finished somewhere between 295 and 297 km/h) and discover exactly what it takes to be the fastest ever.

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