Posted by Editor on 12/5/99
It is amazing what a fine day with little wind can do for the numbers in a bike race. Last Sunday morning one of the largest groups of riders this year turned out for the 27.5km handicap. Forty eight riders were graded into ten bunches.
To make up the 27.5km the riders had to race the first lap to Marshall Mount hall and the second lap to Hooker hill. Being over such a short distance the gaps between the bunches was also small, some only 30 seconds.
The front bunches worked well but it was obvious by half way through the first lap that the winner was going to come from the middle bunches or back markers.
The 4:30 bunch combined well with strong turns being done by Phil Cuifo, Mark Owen and Peter Evans. When they caught the 6:30 bunch the group was strengthened by the inclusion of Joe Chiaverini.
Only a minute behind the 4:30 group, the 3:30 bunch were working like a well oiled machine and while they were slowly closing in on them they were also keeping the 3:00 bunch at bay. The strong turns were being done by Dave Gray, Lionel Covington, Andrew Telford, Terry Wall, Paul Bradburn, Anthony DeBoer and Garry Doughty.
Meanwhile Frank Tortorici and Austin Pitman closed the 30 second gap to the 3:00 bunch just before Marshall Mount, Pitman then bridged across to the 3:00 bunch by himself and worked with them.
Jono Hall and Craig Williams were too strong for their co-scratch markers and rode away from them. They then caught the 1:30 bunch by the end of the first lap.
At the end of the first lap there were four groups on the road. The 3:30 bunch caught the combined group of riders infront of them just after the turn and then tried to stay away from the fast moving chasing bunches. About 2km into the last lap the scratch and block riders caught the combined 2:30 and 3:00 bunches and then only had the one group to catch.
Hall made his move with only 4km or 5km to go, he easily got across to the group infront and immediately attacked them. Only Blackburn was able to go with him and two pulled away from the group.
In the last 1km Hall pulled away from Bradburn to win by 4 seconds. The second group made contact with the leaders as they went into the finishing straight, lead by Mick Lockyer.
Bradburn held for second place only 2 seconds infront of Neil Williams, who won the bunch gallop. Craig Williams came in sixth that was good enough for a well deserved second fastest time for the race.
Hall was very impressive with his win which was good training for the upcoming road race in the Oceania Games.
Next week's race is a criterium at Warilla.
The Oceania Games, and International test event, track races start this week on Wednesday morning at the newly completed Dunc Gray Velodrome. The races will run over five days with morning and evening sessions on the first three days and evening sessions only on the weekend.
The velodrome has to be seen to be believed, combine that with some of the best riders in the world competing and this is a must see event. Compared to the Olympics the entry cost of $20 for evenings and no charge for mornings is a bargain. Information and tickets are available from the Bankstown Districts Sports Club on 02 9793 9530.
|1||Jono Hall||0:50:27||0:12:00||0:38:27||Fastest Time|
|6||Craig Williams||0:50:33||0:12:00||0:38:33||2nd Fastest Time|
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