BATHURST cyclist Craig Hutton was able to make his last National Road Series event a memorable one as he helped his GPM-Stulz team secure the King of the Mountains jersey at the National Capital Tour.
With Hutton stepping back from the national level to help spend more time with his family he had one last opportunity to make an impact.
In a performance that showcased his capabilities as a team player, Hutton produced a superb supporting ride to help teammate Harrison Bailey claim the KOM jersey by just a single point.
All points for the jersey were only available in the 97km second stage.
“We went in with a plan on the second stage to take the King of the Mountains jersey. It put a lot of pressure on us to try and help secure that,” Hutton said.
“We had to do seven uphill sprints. It took a bit of effort to do all of that but it paid off in the end.”
Hutton was the last of the finishing riders to cross the line after spending all his energy to help secure the prize for Bailey.
It was a lucky opportunity for Hutton to take part in the recent four-stage tour, earning the call up after a teammate fell sick.
The Bathurst rider said it will be sad to say farewell to the series but is looking forward to a new role with his team.
“I’ll continue to ride on the state and local circuits. It’s mixed emotions at the moment. It’s been a great eight years or so for me in the series. It’s sad to see one chapter close but another one is beginning with work and family,” he said.
“I’ve had my highlights over the years with some top five places but helping my teammates win jerseys has always felt great.
“The team wants to keep me on board as a mentor for the under 19s boys so I’ll be around to help those up-and-coming riders.”
Bathurst club rider Laura Renshaw took part in the women’s National Capital Tour.
Renshaw finished 43rd in the general classification.