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Gerrans aims for TDU triple treat

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Simon Gerrans will attempt to become the first three-time winner of cycling’s Tour Down Under when he rides in a powerful Orica-GreenEDGE team selected for next month’s race.

Gerrans, who won the race in 2006 and again in Australian-owned team Orica-GreenEDGE’s debut, is returning from the fractured hip suffered during the Tour of Spain which ended his standout 2013 season.

The 33-year-old Victorian will be looking for another big race to kickstart his season.

He won a Tour Down Under stage last year before going on to win the third stage of the Tour de France and also wear its coveted yellow jersey after Orica-GreenEDGE’s victory in the stage 4 team time trial.

South African Daryl Impey is the only non-Australian rider in the seven-man ORICA-GreenEDGE team named on Wednesday for the Tour Down Under to be raced in South Australia from January 19-26.

They are joined by Simon Clarke, Matt Goss, Mathew Hayman, Michael Matthews and Luke Durbridge.

“As an Australian team, this is an important race for us,” said the team’s sport director Matt White.

“We have quite a strong team, and everyone is really motivated to bring home some good results in front of our Australian fans.

We’re targeting stage wins and focused on the overall. We have a number of options to achieve our goals.”

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