If there's one certainty as we reflect from the UCI road world championships, it is that Australian cycling remains in a healthy state - the men that is.
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7 Apr 2015 - 11:32 PM  UPDATED 13 Apr 2015 - 3:36 PM

If there's one certainty as we reflect from the UCI road world
championships, it is that Australian cycling remains in a healthy state -
the men that is.

When our European-based warriors wear the green and gold, they race with passion, determination and plenty of guts to boot.

I
salute all nine men who almost managed to arrange a golden result, but
it wasn't to be. Heartfelt congratulations must go out to Allan Davis
for his bronze medal ride.

Davis has had this day in his sights from the moment it was announced Australia (and Geelong) had won the right to host the UCI's biggest party - and he delivered.

Cadel Evans proved yet again what a gutsy and spirited fighter he is, while elder statesman Stuart O'Grady re-affirmed his status as a living Aussie cycling legend.

Credit
must also go to the technical brains thrust led by Neil Stephens, who
put together a well crafted tactical plan which almost delivered another
rainbow jersey.

The future is bright when you also take into
consideration the gold medal performance of Michael Matthews in the
men's U23 road race and silver to Luke Durbridge in the U23 time trial.

Throw in the huge potential of 2009 U23 World TT champion Jack Borbridge, the Meyer brothers Cameron and Travis and you'll see Australian cycling fans have little to complain about.

Perhaps the only downer during the five-day carnival of cycling was the overall performance of Australia's women.

It goes without saying the results were disappointing and nowhere in the same league as their male counterparts.

It
may be time for a complete review of the women's road program as
Australia has failed to reproduce the generation of riders that brought
so much success for Kathy Watt, Sara Carrigan and Oenone Wood.

I have a lot of time for women's road coach Martin Barras, but I feel his talents are being wasted in charge of this group.

Barras
is the man who ran Australia's hugely successful track squad which
ruled the boards at World and Olympic level, until he was shifted to the
road in 2008.

If Australia's women are to be a world force it may be time to introduce a coach with extensive road experience.

Tour de France legend Jean-Paul van Poppel has done wonders with the Dutch women since taking over so why couldn't Australia employ someone of similar ilk?

There is a long term plan in place for the women which Barras and Cycling Australia hope will see the road women of the future replicating the results of the men - time will tell.

Still,
despite this single blip in world championship performance, a full set
of medals sees Australia top the nations medal tally, a great result by
any measure.