Sean Lake Takes Grafton to Inverell, Joe Cooper Wins National Road Series

Peloton Cafe || 2014 Grafton to Inverell - Sean Lake
Peloton Cafe || 2014 Grafton to Inverell – Sean Lake (image copyright Veloshotz Photography)
New Zealand?s Joseph Cooper (Avanti Racing) has overcome a mid-season fractured pelvis to be crowned the 2014 Subaru National Road Series champion in Inverell on Saturday. ?This is one of the biggest highlights of my cycling career,? said the 2013 New Zealand time trial champion. ?I?m just so glad we got it done today.? Cooper held a dominant lead in the series after taking out the Tour de Perth and Battle on the Border, before breaking his pelvis in a fall during the Tour of Toowoomba in May. Three months later, Cooper returned to the series and quickly?regained his lead from?teammate Brenton Jones. ?I?m so happy, it means a lot to me. I?ve put a whole year of hard work into this and to cap it off today and actually survive the race myself is pretty good.? Cooper finishes the season on 68 points, three ahead of Adelaide?s Tim Roe (Budget Forklifts) and 12 ahead of Jones. In the series? final event, the 54th Grafton to Inverell, it was former Australian rower Sean Lake (African Wildlife Safaris) who stole line honours. The 22 year old has been cycling less than 12 months and found himself in the winning break which formed 30 kilometres into the 228km event. ?It?s absolutely amazing, if you had of asked me before the race if I thought this was going to happen I would have told you pretty much no chance,? said Lake. ?I?ve had a couple of good results in my rowing career but this is definitely the biggest thing, it?s crazy, it?s only my second NRS race.? Lake battled the heat and distance to out-last his breakaway companions, attacking the group with two kilometres to go and racing away to victory. Fellow breakaway rider, Melbourne to Warrnambool winner Oliver Kent-Spark ( out-sprinted Kristian Juel (Budget Forklifts) for second place, 31 seconds behind Lake. ?As we came over the top of the final hill with two kilometres to go, a couple of attacks went and I was one of them. They brought me back to 10?metres in front of them and then when the guy who was chasing me looked back, I decided to have another dig and then I got a really good gap,? explained Lake. The 2015 Subaru National Road Series calendar will be announced in the coming months. Text via Cycling Australia Media Release

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