The Club’s winter road season commenced on Saturday with racing conducted around the Pound Creek circuit. In a change of format the first race of the season was not a handicap but a graded scratch race. The seniors raced over 2 laps (around 51km) whilst the juniors had a 10km time trial.
In the A grade field of 17 riders the bunch stayed together for most of the journey with a high average speed being maintained. Jake Laine put in some strong turns on the front whilst the high tempo over the last climb past the golf course found the legs of several riders not able to go with the bunch. This left a bunch of 14 riders contesting the sprint. It was a wall of riders that greeted the judging team. Ronald Purtle managed to gain a half wheel advantage over Peter Hollins and David Lumby for the podium places. However Tom Debenham, Tony Smith and Steve Wilson were close behind whilst it was still a tight bunch for the rest of the field. The bunch recorded a time of 81 minutes for the 2 laps.
In the B Grade group of 6 riders, Rod Cheyne and Kerry Pritchard were keen to get the bunch off to a good start and had the pace rolling along. However, the first of the hills saw Lindsay Love lose contact and it was a similar story for Mat Dudley on the gold course hill. The second lap saw Rod keep the pressure on and ride away from Kerry, Ken Barnes and new rider Mark Dixon. Rod soloed home for the win in 91minutes. The bunch sprint saw new rider Mark Dixon claim 2nd ahead of Ken and Kerry.
The junior 10km time trial saw the riders ride out and back on the Pound Creek road. This involves the long drag up the hill to the turn which also included a head wind on Saturday. Thomas McFarlane combined playing football on Saturday morning with a quick dash to the bikes. However, he was still fit enough to record a 16.37 time for the win ahead of Will Lumby 17.37 and James Scott at 20.38.
Next week racing will be at Outtrim whilst Tuesday night there is a meeting at Phil Ewington’s house. In 2 weeks time the club has the big junior weekend promotion and will be expecting around 100 juniors to sign on for the 2 days of racing.