by Simon Van Honacker on 21 June 2021
The 2015 season had only just begun when Gianni Meersman made his move. In Geelong, Australia - well-known for the World Championship five years earlier - he was the first over the finishing line on 1 February, to win the very first Cadel Evans Great Ocean Race and head back home with this impressive trophy under his arm. The man the race was named after was participating in his very last professional race that day. The world had come to know Cadel Evans as a mountain bike cyclist. After his switch to road racing, the Australian turned out to be a tour rider. 2011 was his most successful year. As an appetizer and starter, he triumphed at Tirreno-Adriatico and the Tour de Romandie. The lavish main course followed in July. He beat the Luxembourg Schleck brothers in the Tour. But Evans also excelled in the one-day events, to cap it all with his 2009 world title. When has was almost 38 years old, the rider finished fifth in his very last race.