ILLAWARRA Cycle Club teenage rider Blair Arnold will follow a family tradition when he competes in the historic Goulburn to Sydney road race on Sunday.
At age 16, Arnold will be one of the youngest riders in the history of the event to attempt to complete the 171.4 km journey from Goulburn to Camden, and had to be granted special permission from Cycling NSW in order to be allowed to compete.
Arnold has been training hard and racing well over the past months and is confident he has good form.
"Barring accidents and bad luck, I am hopeful I can complete the course, which is my aim," Arnold said
"The professional teams will be driving the peleton very fast and I need to stay with them.
"I have a lot of friends in the bunch and hopefully their encouragement will get me to the finish."
Arnold's older cousin Sam has also entered the race, and the two hope to spur each other on when the race gets tough.
Last week the pair rode the Razorback climbs with a couple of NSW's most experienced road cyclists.
Blair's grandfather Lindsay Arnold, who rode the "Goulburn" from 1941 to 1952, will be at the finish line to hopefully see Blair achieve his goal of following in the pedal-strokes of his famous forebears.
In 1952 and 1953 the famous Arnold brothers Fred and Roger added their names to the honour roll, and on the 60th anniversary of Fred's win, Blair will be attempting to follow in the footsteps of his great-uncles.
"I love the sport and the people who do it," Blair said.
"I'm very grateful for all the help I have received and so excited to have the chance to ride in this historic race."
Blair will be riding the event on the bike that won last year's race, a Team Issue Genesys Malvern Star Oppy C7.
"My grandad and his brothers were all Malvern Star riders, and I am proud to ride one too," Blair said.
The race winners are expected in Camden around 11.30am.
This year's race will also feature a tribute to 2007 winner Robbie Williams who died last month, aged 29.
The Goulburn to Sydney cycle race was inaugurated in 1902.
Winners include such legends of cycling as Sir Hubert Opperman, Richard "Fatty" Lamb, Ern Milliken, Eddie Smith, Laurie Rogers, Kevin Nicholls, Gary Sutton and Eddie Salas.