The Tour de France has a lot to answer for. Last year, and again this year, I became hooked on the intricacies of road cycling, thanks to the excellent broadcast and commentary provided on TV. Needless to say, my interest in the Tour Down Under has significantly increased, and - excitement of all excitements - Stage 2 of next year's race finishes in my local area.
Beginning in Mt Barker, riders will race through a picturesque selection of Adelaide Hills towns, including Macclesfield, Meadows, Echunga, Mylor, Hahndorf, Balhannah, and Cudlee Creek. A brand new King of the Mountain challenge is included in this stage, up Corkscrew Road, Montacute, as well as two sprints - one each in Echunga and Oakbank.
Stage 2 concludes in front of the Campbelltown Council Chambers, Rostrevor. At only 116.5km, the route is the shortest in the race's history, and this, combined with the final downhill 7.5km from Montacute to Rostrevor, should provided an extremely fast and electrifying finish.
If you are intending to be a spectator at the finish of this race, make sure you allow plenty of time to find a car park and good viewing position, as I suspect the crowd will be rather large. Road closures are expected - check the Campbelltown Council website for more details.