2019 Swisse People’s Ride – Register Now

JAN 2018

Spectator Guide

Elite Men's
Elite Women's

Get set for an action-packed weekend of cycling in Geelong for the 2018 Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race.

This year, we have identified six cheer-sites around the course where you can take advantage of the best viewing points during the races. Our spectator guide outlines where to find all of the amenities, big screen live coverage, entertainment, sponsor give-aways and more. Check out:

  • The event village, start/finish precinct at Steampacket Gardens on the Geelong waterfront;
  • Where to gather in Barwon Heads to see the breakaway establish itself;
  • How to catch the sprint in Torquay along the popular Esplanade; and
  • The best spots to cheer the riders on as they sweat up the climbs including Challambra Crescent (Geelong), Bells Beach (Surf Coast) and Queens Park Road (Geelong).

Why not dress up in a wacky costume, decorate your store or house front and make plenty of noise as the riders and television cameras roll past. See you there!



Steampacket Gardens, Geelong Waterfront

Located at the start/finish precinct, the event village is where the build-up for Australia’s best modern-day classic begins. Come along to see the teams being introduced, the riders sign-on and finalise their preparations before taking on the spectacular course. Watch the action live on the big screen, participate in sponsor activities, enjoy live entertainment, grab some food and beverage, your official event merchandise and then take up a spot on the barriers for what is sure to be a blistering finale to the Elite Women’s and Men’s road races.

Event village opening hours:

Saturday 27 January

  • 9am – 4pm
  • Limited activities before 9am and after 4pm
  • 7:30pm (Watch the Australian Open Women’s Final live on the big screen)

Sunday 28 January

  • 9am – 5pm


Elite Women:

Start time: 11:20am Saturday

Expected finish time: Approx. 2:30pm

Presentations: 2:45pm


Elite Men:

Start time: 11:10am Sunday

Expected finish time: Approx. 3:15pm

Presentations: 3:30pm



  • Main stage
  • DJ
  • Live music
  • Big screen: showing the live coverage of the race on Saturday and Sunday
  • Entertainers
  • Team tents
  • Sponsor activations
  • Merchandise
  • Event information
  • Food and beverage options
  • Bike parking
  • Water
  • First aid
  • Toilets

How to get there

Public transport is the best way to arrive at the Event Village. Take the train to Geelong Station and a 10-minute walk to the start/finish precinct. If driving, once in Geelong avoid Western Beach and Eastern Beach Road, as well as between Moorabool and Bellarine streets as there will be road closures. Instead, use Princes Highway, Latrobe Terrace, Mercer Street, Malop Street or Ryrie Street.


Please refer to these Central Geelong parking locations. Western Beach (1) and Cunningham Pier (2) will have limited access due to road closures.

Safety messages for all sites

Please keep off the road and follow all traffic control, security and marshal directions as they are in place for yours and the riders’ safety. They will help you to get where you need to be as quickly and safely as possible. Please also avoid using graffiti on the road.


Cheer on the Elite Women on Saturday and Elite Men on Sunday from this scenic and action-packed location. From here you can get up close to the riders as they take on the Bells Beach climb. Arrive before midday both days to avoid road closures. Please note, no amenities are provided at this location.


Elite Women expected at:

  • 12:45 – 1pm

Elite Men expected at:

  • 12:30 – 12:45pm

How to get there

Take the Great Ocean Road and turn onto Addiscott Road, follow to the T-intersection of Jarosite Road where the KOM is only 700 metres away. Alternatively, use Addiscott Road and turn down Bones Road which becomes Bells Beach Road.


Park on Addiscott Road and walk down Jarosite Road towards the beach (700 metres) to where the KOM takes place. Alternatively, you can park at any of the Bells Beach Road car parks and either ride or walk two kilometres to the top of the KOM.


Montpellier Park, Highton

See the agony on the faces of the world’s best cyclists as they trade blows up the steep Challambra climb, made famous by the 2010 UCI Cycling World Championships. The Elite Men tackle this climb four times, while the Elite Women race over Challambra Crescent for the first time in the event’s history on Saturday. The live site is open from 11am – 5:45pm on Sunday only. Why not cheer on the Swisse People’s Ride participants on Saturday as well when the long course riders tackle the climb for themselves.

Features (Sunday only):

  • Big screen showing the Channel Seven live race coverage
  • Food and beverage vendors
  • Sponsor giveaways
  • Live music
  • Community activities
  • #ChallambraChallenge – tackle the climb yourself on a closed road
  • Water station
  • Toilets

Elite Women (Saturday) expected at:

  • 2:07 – 2:20pm

Swisse People’s Ride (Saturday) participants expected at:

  • 9:30am – 1pm

Elite Men (Sunday) expected at:

  • 1:40 – 2pm (First ascent)
  • 2:05 – 2:25pm (Second ascent)
  • 2:19 – 2:38pm (Third ascent)
  • 2:29 – 2:50pm (Fourth ascent)

How to get there

Arrive early to beat the crowds and traffic management treatments. If coming from Melbourne or the Surf Coast use the Princes Freeway and either take the Barrabool Road off ramp* or Princess Highway off ramp and come up via S Valley Road. If coming from Central Geelong, why not ride your bike. Otherwise, you can drive along Settlement Road and take Roslyn Road to join up with N Valley or Scenic roads.

*This is part of the course so please arrive early.


The closest off-street parking is Barrabool Hills Plaza or Highton Village. There is limited on-street parking, but we ask that you are respectful when parking on the street in front of residential properties.*

*Please don’t park on the course.


If you love fast and furious racing, head to Torquay to watch the riders battle it out for the Torquay intermediate sprint points. Take advantage of the nearby amenities including local cafes, boutique shops, public toilets and why not cool off at the beach afterwards! This is also a good unofficial rest stop for the Swisse People’s Ride peloton.

Elite Women expected at:

  • 12:40 – 12:50pm

Elite Men expected at:

  • 12:20 – 12:30pm


How to get there

Use the Surf Coast Highway if coming from the north and turn left into any street between Zeally Bay Road and Price Street. If coming from the Surf Coast, use the Great Ocean Road and turn right on Anderson Street or Bristol Road.


The majority of on- and off-street parking is located between Zeally Bay and Boston roads, which is between 400 metres and one kilometre from the sprint point.


Big crowds will gather in Barwon Heads, the hometown of Cadel Evans, where the peloton flies down the main street. Look out for teams trying hard to establish a breakaway in the race before the course changes direction and hugs the coast at Thirteenth Beach. Grab a bite at a local eatery, visit the shops or hit the local recreational riding trails while in the town. Swisse People’s Ride participants are sure to pack the cafes and restaurants here on the first official rest stop.


Elite Women expected at:

  • 12:00 – 12:10pm

Elite Men expected at:

  • 11:50am – 12:00pm


How to get there

From Barwon Heads Road access the cheer-site via Mt Duneed Road and the Surf Coast Highway, but get in early as Barwon Heads Road is part of the course and will be closed. Alternatively, arrive via the Bellarine Highway, through Ocean Grove.


Try Flinders Parade, Bridge Road near the IGA and the parking lots on Thirteenth Beach Road. Avoid parking on Hitchcock Avenue, Bridge Road and Ewing Blyth Drive as that is part of the course.


The riders will descend into Queens Park at speeds of almost 85km/h before climbing back up what is a significant pinch of a climb – a guaranteed viewing highlight for spectators. This cheer-site will be open from 1pm until 3.15pm both days and includes food vendors, music and public toilets. There is also a guaranteed challenge up Melville Avenue for many of the Swisse People’s Ride participants on this steep climb.


Elite Women expected at:

  • 2:10 – 2:30pm

Elite Men expected at:

  • 1:40 – 2pm

How to get there

Arrive early as access is limited, especially on Sunday. If coming from the centre of town use either Latrobe Terrace or Shannan Avenue then take either Queens Roads, Noble Street or Aphrasia Street.


There is some parking available on both sides of the Barwon River. There is also some street parking on Queens Road, and more near St Joseph’s College and the Queens Reserve.


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