The Dunedin professional cyclist Greg Henderson will lead a New Zealand team in the new year in Australia's oldest stage race, the Herald Sun Tour.
The Lotto Belisol rider heads a six-strong national team for the race, which will celebrate its 60th anniversary as a four-day event in early January.
Henderson's joined by London Olympian Westley Gough, Josh Atkins, Tom Scully, Mike Northey and James Oram.
As the Herald Sun Tour is no longer a UCI-sanctioned event, World Tour rider Henderson could not complete unless it was for a sanctioned national team - so Tour organisers, keen to get the Melbourne-based star into the event, contacted BikeNZ with the offer to fully support the team for the event.
Henderson was keen to compete as a lead-in to the New Zealand road championships and the Tour Down Under in Adelaide next month.
The tour begins with a 4.8-kilometre time trial in the beachside town of Williamstown followed by a 144-km stage to Bendigo, a 145-km stage in the Yarra Valley and final 90-km stage centred on the famed Arthurs Seat climb.