The Bendigo Mountain Bike Club has announced Isaac Fletcher as the 2020 recipient of the Jason Lowndes Junior Development Award.
The award, an initiative of Russell and Tasman Nankervis and the Lowndes family, recognises Jason Lowndes, professional cyclist, long time Bendigo Mountain Bike Club member and supporter, mate and loved son and brother, who was tragically killed in a vehicle collision while doing what he loved: riding bikes.
Lowndesy started competing with the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club as a young teenager with the likes of Tasman and Russell Nankervis, Chris and Tyler Hamilton and Jack Haig.
He was a valued friend to many. An athlete who quickly moved to an international cycling career, he always maintained his Bendigo roots.
This is the second year of the award, which is presented to an under-19 mountain bike competitor and member of the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club. In 2020, the award recognises the all-round achievements in, and contribution to, mountain bike riding.
Award recipient Isaac Fletcher is a welcoming and supportive member of our community who is always ready to lend a hand. He diligently assists with course set up, packing up after events and marshalling out on course.
He is a constant support to his peers and is entirely admirable in the way that he encourages and mentors all our younger riders.
Issac's hard work has been paying off this year with multiple podiums at the Victorian Cross-Country Series and 5th place at the 2020 Australian Mountain Bike Championships. He has skillfully balanced school, family and his own personal training commitments.
Isaac has this year been the most senior member of the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club's 2 Wheel Academy where he has participated keenly under the guidance of coaches Jo Wall and Stu MacGregor.
The way that Isaac has conducted himself within and also outside of the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club community demonstrates that he shares many great traits with our mate Jason.
Russel Nankervis reflected that as a teenager Lowndesy became involved in nearly every aspect of cycling in Bendigo. He worked at his local bike shop, coached junior riders and would spend far too long socialising in lycra at the local coffee shop.
Travelling to races in a beat-up old ute was essential; seeing the sights and blasting outrageous music was just as important as the race itself.
It seemed Lowndsey's direction in life was set on becoming a professional cyclist. Years of learning race craft and forging friendships in the road scene would eventually take Lowndesy to his biggest race yet.
In 2016 Lowndesy was designated the sprinter for the Australian road team at the under-23 World Road Championships. He raced with courage and pride.
Anyone watching the live stream of the event could see that there was only one grin bigger than the winners at the finish line.
It was the grin of Lowndesy who brought home an impressive sixth place finish at his first world championship event.
He was larger than sport and knew the value in mateship.
On behalf of Graeme and Trudie Lowndes and the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club, we wish Isaac all the best in continuing to ride with pride and passion in memory of Jason 'Lowndesy' Lowndes.