The Leongatha Cycling Club played host for a late season Gippsland Combine road race at Poowong on Saturday. Over recent weeks club members have been racing away with some riders talking Mt Baw Baw last weekend whilst Oliver McLean was racing in West Australia at the junior national meeting. Conditions were really pleasant on Saturday afternoon with temperatures around 24C and a light breeze for the 3 scratch race starters.
The A grade field of 8 riders raced 3 laps of the Poowong-Nyora-Loch-Poowong circuit so had 3 ascents of the steep climb into Poowong. The field managed to generally stay together until the last lap. Will Lumby had a dash away on the second lap whilst Alex Dunbar raced away on the last lap, holding a lead of around 200m at the Nyora corner. However, at the finish it was a clear win to Oliver McLean from Alex whilst Leigh Stott just a short gap back in third. The winning time was 1hr 32min 49 sec. Jason Strickland (Warragul) was 4th, Jacob De Klerk (Warragul0 5th, Will Lumby 6th, Connor Bagot 7th and Jason Fritzloff(Warragul) 8th.
The B Grade field was only 4 riders and the first time up the Poowong hill saw Rod Cheyne loose contact leaving Peter McLean, Kevin Feely and Mark Bensley pacing themselves. Although Rod almost caught them the Poowong hill and the finish put paid to his efforts. The B grade race was over 2 laps of the circuit. In the dash to the line, Kevin Feely has a narrow win over Peter and Mark.
In the C grade race, there were 4 riders racing over 2 laps. These riders started with the B grade riders and John Taylor (Warragul) managed to go with the B grade riders a bit further than the others so was able to ride home on the last lap by himself for an easy win. Bernadette Fitzgerald won the sprint for 2nd from Terry Kelly whilst Donna Innes- Wardell battled around both laps alone.
Next weekend racing is at Dumbalk and then the club will be into track season. A working bee was held on Sunday to ready things for track training on Wednesday nights and racing on Friday nights starting on Oct 26. The club has a monthly meeting on Tuesday night and is expected to set Oct 19th 2019, as the night for a 60 year anniversary celebration. Save the date and let us know contacts for past riders and supporters.