The Focus Women?s Series is coming to a thrilling conclusion. With only one Round remaining, three riders are still in with a chance of winning the purple and yellow Focus Women?s Series leader?s jersey.
Round 8, the final round, is taking place at the Tourific Prospect street party thanks to the City of Prospect. At present, SASI?s Dani McKinnirey is leading the Focus Women?s Series on 88 points, 16 points ahead of Jenny Macpherson (Port Adelaide Cycling Club) with Maeve Moroney Plouffe (SASI) and Victoria Veitch (Euride Mercedes) just one point adrift from Macpherson.
Veitch won?t contest the final round as she has been selected to take part in the Santos Women?s Tour. So that leaves three possible winners of the series ? McKinnirey, Macpherson and Moroney Plouffe.
SASI?s Dani McKinnirey is representing Australia at the Track World Cup in Hong Kong on January 16-17, leaving doubt as to whether she will be competing in the final round of the Focus Women?s Series.
This leaves the overall leader?s position in jeopardy. Macpherson is in blistering form; in fact, she has won the last two rounds of the series. If Macpherson wins the Tourific Prospect finale, she will win the series if McKinnirey is absent.
Another possible outcome is that Moroney Plouffe could take the ultimate prize. If McKinnirey doesn?t race in Monday?s grand finale, and her teammate Moroney Plouffe wins the race, she would snare the leader?s jersey from McKinnirey.
In a race that promises a world-class, electrifying atmosphere along the cosmopolitan hot-spot of Prospect Road, we just can?t tell who will indeed claim the general classification lead.
Macpherson has heaped praise on her PACC teammates ahead of the Prospect finale.
?It’s great to have such a supportive bunch of women on the PACC team, it really makes racing much more enjoyable,? Macpherson said.
?We all want to contribute to the race plan and knowing you have committed team-mates makes for a positive environment, no matter what the end result is.
?A post-race winning beverage also definitely bonds our team even more! I think this kind of attitude reflects positively about the PACC culture, everyone can have a go and enjoy themselves in a fun and friendly atmosphere.
?After breaking some ribs in early October, I’m really happy with how my form has improved during the series.
?With one race to go, it will be a nail-biting finish of the series considering the top overall placings are so close. I can’t say I enjoy hot-dog crits, but then again I don’t know anyone who says ‘I love hot dog crit circuits’!, so I’m hoping my form, tactics and supportive team-mates will set up an exciting finale.?
Along with Macpherson, Victoria Veitch has been the perfect picture of consistent results throughout the Focus Women?s Series. She has finished on the podium twice, and only missed out of points in Round 5. However, she won?t be able to stage a final round push for the GC due to her commitments in the Santos Women?s Series.
?I’m hoping Jenny wins,? Victoria claimed.
?Her technical handling and finishing firepower gives her the advantage on a hotdog circuit.
?Overall, the series has been very valuable for our team in allowing our up-and-coming riders to bring up their skills and fitness level. The team heads into a full NRS season this year and we have had to recruit five of our riders from interstate, so I think the local series is vital if SA is going to be capable of fielding NRS quality riders of our own.
?We have been very impressed with the organisation and enthusiasm of CSA for this expanded series. It’s nice to see the overall quality in competition elevated in response.?
In this year?s Focus Women?s Series, we have only seen two riders wear the leader?s jersey ? they are Dani McKinnirey and Carlee TAYLOR (USG Racing). If Macpherson or Moroney Plouffe are able to snatch the purple and yellow jersey from the clutches of McKinnirey, it would certainly provide an epic finish to the series that demonstrates the significance of consistent placings across the 8 rounds of racing.