Mark O'Brien to ride in Tour Down Under

HORSHAM cyclist Mark O'Brien will ride in Australia's biggest cycling race, the Tour Down Under, starting at the weekend.

It is the first time O'Brien has been included in the tour - the first event of the year on the Union Cycliste Internationale World Tour.

The tour is from January 19-26 and starts and finishes in Adelaide.

Some of the top riders from around the world compete at the Tour Down Under.

The cream of Australia's cycling talent will also be on display, with Cadel Evans, Richie Porte and Simon Gerrans all set to ride.

O'Brien's Avanti Racing Team is not included in the UCI World Tour, but he will ride in the Tour Down Under after being selected to a special Australian Pro Continental team.

It comes after O'Brien posted a career-best seventh-place finish in Sunday's Cycling Australia Road National Championships.

O'Brien said he felt he could have finished in the top three if he had ridden a smarter tactical race.

He said riding in the Tour Down Under had always been one of his cycling dreams.

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