Melbourne born and bred, Super Domestique Mitch Docker is an absolute team player when it comes to racing. Over the years he has risen up through various teams to be one of the best support riders in the world and will bury himself for the chosen riders.
Now in his second year with EF Education First, the Brunswick Cycling Club member is a force to be reckoned with on the road as readies himself for his 12th Jayco Herald Sun Tour.
The preparation for the 33-year-old and his WorldTour team, EF Education First has been near perfect across the summer of cycling leading into this year’s Tour.
“We’ve just come off the Tour Down, and we’ve got a nice little pick up this weekend with the Race Torquay and then the Jayco Herald Sun Tour is the icing on the cake …. you come off a big pre-season training, you get a chance to sharpen yourself up at Down Under and the Herald Sun Tour sits in the right place where the form should be at a really good level.
There is a lot of depth within the team, which will be highly versatile to the variations in the stages, in particular stage one & five.
“Our leader will be Neilson Powless, supporting him will be the local James Whelan who have been brought in after Tour Down Under and Cadel’s so he’ll be a fresh rider.”
We’ve got a really strong squad and I think it’s good to have a bit of fresh blood coming in across from Europe, in particular the young guys who want to prove them selves as well, plus the guys, from the other races, have got some form too. Jimmy [Whelan] has been doing a bit more preparation this year and I am sure he is going to be champing at the bit to finally get himself back in the racing scene in more or less a home race for him. He’ll be ready to go.
Docker is famous for his team work and hard work, often sacrificing himself, to help those around him ensure they get to the finish line with plenty of legs for the sprint.
“There’s myself and Tom Scully and Jonas [Rutsch] who are all there for the lead out, to help assist in the sprint. We’re bringing in a new sprinter called Moreno Hofland,”
Always a favourite with the home crowds for his flair and panache on the bike, Docker is looking to make an impact on the race during the first and final stages and cannot wait to race in front of a home crowd.
“For me there are two really good stages, the flat stage from Nagambie to Shepparton, I actually recon’d that stage and that’s an important stage especially if the wind gets up. It’s going to be a tough day which suits me and the whole lead out train. Then the last stage in Melbourne is also a great stage. I had a great time there last year, riding across the break and it’s something that’s a bit more special for me, racing in Melbourne.
I love doing the Jayco Herald Sun Tour, I think this is my 12th time doing the Tour so clearly it’s a race I love, being back around home and it’s also the last send off before I head off to Europe so it’s a great race to do.
We are always excited to see the EF Education first squad role into town, with their signature bright colours and fun vibes. They are one team many on the roadside will be cheering for out on the tarmac.