Club racing was held on Sunday morning from Pound Creek with a 9.30 start to racing. However, for those riding to the start it meant a warm up ride across frosty country side with the thermometer at around zero degrees. However, the morning did warm up to a pleasant sunny morning and race conditions were pretty good. The senior field raced for the Lex Watt Memorial Trophy whilst the B grade riders raced for the Watchorn Trophy.
The scratch duo of Austin Timmins and Thomas McFarlane had another duo – Harrison McLean and Steve Allen – on 3 min whilst on 8 min there was a trio – Kevin Feely, Chris Rowe and Leigh Stott. Out on a limit of 12 min there were a further 3 riders – Oliver McLean, Brad Bouquet and Bernadette Fitzgerald. The riders faced 2 laps of the 24km circuit. By the time the riders raced back round the corner from the Koonwarra Rd back onto the Bass Highway the limit group had lost 3 min of their lead to the chasing trio whilst the back markers had closed up but not as markedly. By the time they reached the same corner on the second lap the 8 min and 12 min bunch were together and moving well but they only had around 30 sec on the back-marker quartet and still had around 8km to race.
Perhaps it was the Saturday race for Thomas McFarlane (he competed in the Melbourne-Ballarat Race) or perhaps it was a little more desperation by the limit riders but they reached the line about 100m ahead of the chasers. In the dash to the line it was the limit trio who outs-printed the middle markers to claim the podium places. Oliver McLean claimed the trophy from Bernadette Fitzgerald and Brad Bouquet. Kevin Feely was 4th, Chris Rowe 5th and Leigh Stott 6th. Harrison McLean led the back markers in for 7th then it was Thomas McFarlane 8th and fastest time (1hr 20min). Next in was Steve Allen and then Austin Timmins.
The B Grade riders raced up and back on the Pound Creek Rd twice for around a 17km race. Thomas Fitzgerald was back from his successful racing at the Eildon Junior tour and racing from scratch. He was chasing 1.30min to Kaleb Jans whilst out on 3min 30 sec was Zach Stubbs-Teylor, Jack Allen and Gregg Bradshaw. With no wind to contest with, the limit group used their numbers to keep the pace steady and with a lack of commitment from the back markers it was again a limit rider bunch contesting for the Watchorn Trophy. Zach showed his break from racing over the school holidays was no disadvantage as he scored his first win and a trophy as well. A close second went to Greg Bradshaw whilst Jack Allen was 3rd. Thomas Fitzgerald was 4th and fastest – 36min 58 sec, whilst Kaleb Jans was 5th.
The Club was expecting some more riders for the Sunday race however the Saturday morning training bunch ride suffered some mishaps with riders trying out the Chris Froome position for some down hill descents. Club members are reminded that there is a Club meeting on Tuesday night at the RSL rooms. Next Saturday also sees the club host the next round of the State Time Trial series at the Outtrim Reserve venue. Club racing will start at 9.00am with the State series at 10.00am. The afternoon will see members tackle the hillclimb dash up Mt Misery. If riders are not racing we can can use you to help run the racing.
A Junior road handicap trophy created by Terry & Leon Watchorn. (year unknown)
Lex Watt trophy
The Lex Watt trophy is a handicap race in honour of Lex, who died in a trucking accident at a Yarram level crossing. Lex rode with the Club as a Junior in the early sixties.