At 10.22am on 18 December 2015, the release was issued by Orica-GreenEdge: one of the team’s original recruits, Brett Lancaster, is retiring from racing. “Having the opportunity to join an Australian professional team and finish my career there was definitely a dream come true.”
His racing career is filled with highlights even if Lancaster is one of the quiet achievers in Australian cycling.
Lancaster is the third Australian to have worn the pink leader’s jersey at the Giro d’Italia. He has won Olympic gold. He has multiple world titles to his credit. And he’s been labelled the “best lead-out rider of his generation” by some of the world’s finest sprinters.
The boy from Shepparton isn’t done with cycling just because he’s decided to stop competing at the highest level.
In 2016, he will join Team Sky as a directeur sportif.
At 10.46am on 18 December 2015, a second media release was issued in relation to Lancaster: “I love cycling so staying in the sport was very important to me,” he told Sky’s Italian DS Dario Cioni in response to a series of questions from future colleagues at the British-registered team.
“The move from the bike to the car is always going to be tough, but it’s one that I’m ready for. All the DSs at Team Sky were great bike riders so you’ve been through the same transition. I’m looking forward to it.
“Joining Team Sky was an unmissable opportunity and the best next step in my career. I’m delighted to be here.”
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Below are 10 images of Brett Lancaster from a professional racing career that spanned from 2002 through to 2015.
– Photos: Yuzuru Sunada
A master pursuiter: world champion in 2002 along with Peter Dawson, Stephen Wooldridge and Luke Roberts…
A successful title defence: Lancaster on top of the team pursuit podium in 2003 with team-mates Peter Dawson, Luke Roberts and Graeme Brown.
Lead-out specialists and gold medallists: Mark Renshaw (at left), Luke Roberts, Peter Dawson, Stephen Woodridge (obscured) and Brett Lancaster: world champions in 2002.
Lancaster, one of the first Australian riders to ride a sub-four minute pursuit…
A champion and a showman… Lancaster receives the first leader’s jersey of the Giro d’Italia in 2005 from Mario Cipollini.
Leading the Giro d’Italia: stage one of the 2005 race.
Tour de France debut: London prologue in 2007.
Stage 19 of the 2010 Tour de France as part of the Cervélo TestTeam.
Working for the man: Lancaster ahead of Thor Hushovd in stage three of the 2010 Tour de France… which would be won by the Norwegian champion.
Lancaster (centre of back row) was part of the line-up that set the fastest average speed for a team time trial at the Tour de France… on the podium in Nice after stage four of the race in 2013.
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Thanks for the memories Brett! It’s been one amazing ride.
We wish you all the best for what’s yet to come.