NSWIS cyclist Sarah Roy will don the green and gold Australian Champion jersey for the entire 2021 racing season after a phenomenal victory in the women’s elite road race at the 2021 Federation University Road National Championships in Buninyong.
The 34-year-old took home one of eight gold medals won by NSWIS athletes, with Emily Watts, Stuart Jones, Emilie Miller and Lauren Parker taking out their respective events.
Roy (Team Bike Exchange) was initially in a two-women breakaway before dropping her competitor with three laps of the course remaining and riding solo to her maiden road crown.
Having spent previous women’s road national championships in supporting roles to former winners such as Amanda Spratt (also of NSWIS), Roy took her chance in this year’s race.
“People have just presumed this course doesn’t suit me, but I’ve always thought it can suit me,” Roy said.
“I’ve always had this quiet little self-belief with this course that one day I want to crack it”
“I didn’t think it was going to be today, but I took advantage of my team role and that was to be in the break. I pushed the breakaway out a bit further and it paid off.”
It was more gold in the U/23 women’s event with NSWIS Emerging track endurance cyclist, Emily Watts, crossing the line ahead of her age group rivals. In a race where U/23 and elites race together, the win came as somewhat of a surprise to Watts, having crossed the line 5th in the overall elite placings.
“I feel pretty stoked because I’ve never felt like this before,” Watts explained.
“As I crossed the line, I had no idea I had won the under 23s category, so when I was notified of it, I was pretty shocked”. Watts also took silver in the U/23 Time Trial.
NSWIS Para-cyclists also dominated with Stuart Jones doing the double and taking gold in the MT2 Time Trial and Road Races, Emilie Miller also doing the double in the WH1 division and NSWIS and world champion triathlete, Lauren Parker, also taking gold in the Time Trial and Road Races of the WH3 division in her first attempt at the Road Cycling National Championships.
Parker has now made her intentions clear to qualify for Tokyo in both the Triathlon and Cycling events.
Haylee Fuller, NSWIS Track Endurance Cyclist, took home two silver medals in the Junior Women’s Time Trial and Criterium rounding out a highly successful event for NSWIS athletes.