13 Sep 2023

A new public time trial on Willunga Hill at the next Santos Tour Down Under will feature legendary Australian cyclist Richie Porte and will headline a range of new participation rides at Australia’s greatest cycling event.

Recreational riders can take on the recently retired Porte – seven-time king of Willunga Hill – in the time trial on Saturday 20 January.

The gruelling three-kilometre test up Willunga Hill is one of three public cycling events announced today as part of the 2024 Santos Tour Down Under participation program, which also features daily group rides across South Australian regions and the return of the Carpark Climb presented by Wilson Parking, a crowd favourite, on 20 January.

Amateur cyclists tackling the time trial will leave from the starting ramp in one-minute intervals, with Porte then let loose to chase down the riders ahead.

Riders and fans alike are also invited to stay on and enjoy the men’s Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) WorldTour peloton as they tackle the climb later in the day during THINK! Road Safety Men’s Stage 5 of the Santos Tour Down Under.

That evening the action-packed Carpark Climb presented by Wilson Parking, last held in 2018, will return to Adelaide’s East End, with participating riders set to climb a Wilson Parking six-storey carpark.

Each entrant will race against the clock from street level to the top while spectators enjoy live DJs, food trucks and bars to party throughout this fast-paced event.

Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison said the Santos Tour Down Under is the greatest gathering of cycling fans and recreational riders in the southern hemisphere.

“We welcome all cycling fans from far and wide to join us here in South Australia and be a part of the 2024 Santos Tour Down Under,” Minister Bettison said.

“We know the impact this event has on the recreational cycling community is immense – to be involved in Australia’s greatest cycling race.

“South Australia has something to offer all levels of cyclists and what a way this is to discover our beautiful state.” 

Richie Porte said he was excited to take on the public.

“I love being in Adelaide and especially during the Santos Tour Down Under. I am already looking forward to being back on my bike, but without the full pressure of having the peloton behind me.

“It will be so much fun trying to catch the entrants in the time trial up Willunga Hill.”

Santos Tour Down Under Race Director Stuart O’Grady OAM said riding alongside Richie Porte up the iconic Willunga Hill would be top of many cyclists wish-lists.

“Richie is famous for this climb for good reason – he won the stage race up Willunga Hill seven times throughout his career. For any cycling enthusiast, the opportunity to ride alongside him on this hill is an honour.

“But it’s not just the time trial. We are so excited for the Carpark Climb presented by Wilson Parking to return and we have extended our group ride offering to feature elements of UCI WorldTour stages, bringing fans even closer to the action.”

Group rides will leave daily from the Tour Village in central Adelaide and offer multiple options each day for various levels of experience and pace. The group rides give participants the chance to tackle various sections or elements of the official stages such as sprint segments, and king and queen of the mountain climbs.

The details:

Willunga Hill Time Trial 

  • Saturday 20 January, 10:00am
  • Entries open now through the Santos Tour Down Under website.
  • Entry fee $49 (incl GST)
  • Fastest male and female will win $1000 prize money, signed King of the Mountain jersey and 
    chance to present to the THINK! Road Safety Men’s Stage 5 King of the Mountain on stage. 

Group Rides

  • Rides taking place between Friday 12 and Sunday 21 January
  • Free entry
  • Two rides leaving daily from the Tour Village, with a long and short option
  • See the full list of rides and sign up through the Santos Tour Down Under website.

Carpark Climb

  • Saturday 20 January
  • Expression of interest open now through the Santos Tour Down Under website


The Santos Tour Down Under is part of the UCI World Tour

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