Friday night saw the pre Christmas racing and break up night with great weather for the racing and pizzas after the races. The club will take a 3 week break and resume racing on Jan 18 but training will be on again for Wed 16, Jan.
The first event for the night – a 1 lap time trial saw several riders post some personal bests. In the A grade group Ron Purtle put in a scorcher stopping the clock at 30.12 sec. Tom McFarlane, having conducted some experiments over the past weeks with the gearing he needs to ride found a sweet spot on Friday as he too zipped around the track in 30.29 sec. Kevin Feely put in a consistent 35.28 sec.
Then it was over to the junior riders and Matt Minogue was also steady at 35.76 sec showing the training efforts are paying off. Then it was Aaron Fraser 36.92 being very quick of the start. Then it was Hamish Bissett 37.67, , Alex Bennett 42.34, Brielle Cox 42.77, Matt Winchester 43.08, Fleur Timmins 47.25, Thomas Fitzgerald 49.69 and Cody Cox 54.52 sec.
Some short scratch races were next on the list. First up it was Thomas up against Cody on the 26 inch wheel bikes over 2 laps.
In a close fought race it was Thomas with a narrow win from Cody. They were followed by Matt Winchester, Alex, Brielle and Fleur racing over 3 laps. However the pace was only applied over the last 2 laps and this saw Brielle race strongly to the line for a great win from Alex and Matt. The last of the Junior scratch races was a 4 lap race for Matt Minogue, Hamish and Aaron. Aaron led through at bell lap followed by Hamish and Matt however it was not long before Matt swept to the front to score an easy win from Hamish and Aaron. The A grade riders raced over 8 laps and Ron Purtle raced to the front with 300m to go and looked the winner but in the dash to the line it was Tom McFarlane winning by just centimetres from Ron and Kevin.
The little guys were then on for their 1 lap handicap. This time Cody had a start and made the most of it to lead all the way for a win over Thomas. The other 7 juniors were then lined up for their 1 lap dash. Fleur Timmins on the 100m mark thought she had a chance for a win and raced strongly. However, Aaron Fraser( 50) showed his training efforts have not been wasted as he flew from the start and swept to the lead with 20m to go to claim a dashing win from Fluer and Brielle ( 75). The A grade 2 lap handicap saw Ron Purtle (Scr) and Tom McFarlane (5) chasing Kevin Feely (100). Kevin looked a great chance but strong turns and a quick start from Tom McFarlane had them catch Keving with 80m to go. That was enough to see Ron claim a narrow win from Tom and Kevin.
The 24 inchers were back in action for a 1 lap sprint. After some trouble with feet coming adrift from the pedals the race finally got under way and Thomas held sway to win from Cody. They were followed by a sprint round for Alex and Brielle over 1 lap. Brielle showed plenty of fight to claim the win from Alex. In the match race between Matt Winchester and Fluer it was Matt who was on fire has he controlled the race to score the win.
The other 6 riders were organised for a 3 team madison over 12 laps. Team Leongatha was Kevin and Matt up against Blue team – Tom and Hamish and the new kids on the block – team white – Ron and Aaron. A few instructions and demonstrations for the rider changes saw the riders in action for the race. The race proved pretty competitive and hard to pick a winner with the lead changing several times and riders improving on their changes. However, the blue team of Tom and Hamish were in front when it counted and tool the win from Team Leongatha (Kevin and Matt) and team white (Ron and Aaron). Race organiser Lindsay Love, keeps hoping for some more consistency in u numbers and is looking to see at least 5 teams in action by the end of the season.
To finish of the night just before the pizzas arrived there was another round of sprints. Once again it was Tom winning from Cody. Alex was up against Fleur and this week Alex rode the race from the bottom of the track and managed to take the win. Last race was the match up between the first round winners – Matt and Brielle. Matt once again showed some good sprint form as he took out the win.
The others decided they would try the pizzas instead of another race and with a pleasant evening some Christmas cheer was enjoyed and plans made for training again on Jan 16.