MASTERFUL EFFORT: Warwick rider Tony Simonelli with gold and silver medals won in national cycling at Ballarat.
MASTERFUL EFFORT: Warwick rider Tony Simonelli with gold and silver medals won in national cycling at Ballarat. Gerard Walsh

Tony adds gold, silver to his tally

TONY Simonelli has taken his national medal tally to five after winning gold and silver in the Australian Championships at Ballarat.

The Warwick cyclist won the 50-54 years criterium over two laps which followed a 30-minute ride.

He broke away in the final 10km of a 26km ride and won by 10 seconds.

Simonelli was second in the 20km time trial after the winner rode 1min 12sec faster.

"I averaged 44 kilometres an hour in the time trial which was on the bitumen at Ballarat next to a wind farm," he said.

He also won the champion of champions in the 50-54 years division.

Simonelli said his success at Ballarat was a new high in a 35-year career.

He is in his first year in a new age group and trained 20 hours a week in the run up to Ballarat. "I rode twice a day, six days a week. My longest ride each week was 160km," he said.

Simonelli rides regularly with the Bracker Boys, a group which meets at 5.30am each Saturday at the bus stop in Bracker Rd.

He also rides each Sunday with a group which leaves Redback Cycles at 6.30am.

Surprisingly, Simonelli admits he is going to have a little rest before returning to the road next month to start preparing for the world championships in Perth in 2016.

On the road, he was ninth in the 150km elite state championships at Swan Creek this year and won silver in the Masters 5 class.

Early in the year, he won the Queensland time trial in his age group and then the criterium championships mid-year.



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