More than 100,000 cycling fans and sailing enthusiasts are set to take over Geelong this long weekend, as the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and Festival of Sails bring a vibrant program of activities, entertainment and excitement to the foreshore.
Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Steve Dimopoulos today encouraged families and friends to visit Geelong and the Surf Coast for a blockbuster weekend of event, backed by the Allan Labor Government through Visit Victoria.
Now in its eighth year, the 2024 Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race will see 187 of the world’s best cyclists from 27 countries tackle exciting new courses in the elite races along the world-renowned Great Ocean Road, across Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula.
Cyclists of all ages and abilities will also be able to participate in the fan-favourite TAC People’s Ride and the GeelongPort Family Ride, which last yearwelcomed more than 2,500 participants.
While cyclists take over the region’s roads, the Festival of Sails will bring more than 275 yachts and over 2,000 crew from all around the world to Corio Bay for the largest keelboat sailing regatta in the southern hemisphere.
As part of the festival, the Royal Geelong Yacht Club will also host three days of contemporary live music, family activities, a beach volleyball competition, varied hospitality offerings and free come-and-try sailing sessions.
Both events are helping to drive visitation to Geelong and grow the region's visitor economy.
Recent data released by Tourism Research Australia showed the Geelong and the Bellarine region enjoyed a 74 percent increase in domestic visitor expenditure in the year to September 2023, compared to the year ending September 2019.
The Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and the Festival of Sails are just two of the many blockbuster events taking place in the first quarter of 2024, alongside the NGV Triennial, the Australian Open, Groundhog Day the Musical, the Matildas’ Olympic Qualifier, the Rip Curl Pro, and the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix.
For more information, and to register for the People’s Ride and Family Ride, visit cadelevansgreatoceanroadrace.com.au.
For more information about Festival of Sails, go to festivalofsails.com.au.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Steve Dimopoulos
“The Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and Festival of Sails both offer the excitement of watching world-class athletes in action alongside live music, food and drink and free family entertainment. If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind experience over the long weekend, Geelong’s foreshore is the place to be!”
“We’re proud to support both of these iconic events that will bring visitors from far and wide to enjoy everything Geelong has to offer, and deliver big benefits to local business and the region’s visitor economy.”
Quote attributable to Member for Geelong Christine Couzens
“The Festival of Sails and the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race are two iconic events in Geelong, attracting more than 100,000 visitors. These events play a crucial role in boosting the local economy and supporting small businesses."
Quote attributable to the Member for Lara Ella George
“We’re supporting exciting events in Geelong and we look forward to welcoming thousands of competitors and fans for the events this long weekend.”
Quote attributable to Member for Bellarine Alison Marchant
“These fantastic events gives visitors even more reason to head to the Geelong and Bellarine to discover everything there is to love about our great city and surrounds.”
Quote attributable to Member for South Barwon Darren Cheeseman
“Local hotels, restaurants, cafes and other businesses are set to benefit from these international and national sporting events held right here in Geelong and the Surf Coast.”
Reviewed 25 January 2024