The third race of the Apollo Bicycles Summer Season saw the sun out and stay out for the entire morning, allowing riders to enjoy the idyll spring conditions.
Bunch sprints were the order of the day, with little wind present making it relatively easy for riders to conserve energy in the big bunches. As usual there were plenty of break away attempts in all grades, but the only ones to succeed came in B and C Grades.
Peter Risely (The King’s Men) got away midway through the B Grade race, and initially worked with Alistair Stuart to open a commanding lead. When Stuart’s legs gave out in the final 10 minutes, Risley proved well and truly up to the challenge and maintained his 20 second lead as the finish neared.
A late chase by Trent Brown (Fitzroy Cycles), David O’Leary and Luke Postelthwaite came close to crossing the divide before disintegrating, leaving Risely with an unbeatable lead for the final lap. Sean Hanneberry made short work of the sprint for second, finishing ahead of Lachlan Holliday, David Randall (Bicycle Superstore) and Tom Russel.
Lisa Hanley (Cycling-Inform) sprinted well to take the women’s win ahead of Ruby Greig-Hurtig (Melbourne Designed Floors) and Sarah Riley (LIV-Giant).
What started as a break of five in C Grade, with Alex Nazarewicz, Angus Lyons, Thomas Slingsby, Tomarsh Loki and Cameron Letty opening a significant advantage on the peleton, was whittled down to two soon after the half way mark as the pace set by youngsters Lyons and Slingsby proved a little too hot.
The pair went on to lap the C Grade bunch at the 4o minute mark, and before long Lyons was off the front again and eventually soloed home for an impressive (and B Grade ready!) win. Slingsby couldn’t quite match Lyons second break, but worked with Ed Smith (Kelly Cycle Coaching), James Harrison and David McLean to open another break on the main bunch to romp home with second place. His companions rounded out the podium.
In the C Grade women’s field, the hard working Sam de Ritter (Giant) was too strong, and took the sprint comfortably ahead of Carolyn Fraser and Melissa Kah.
Late attacks from David Sturt, (Cycling-Inform), Vaughan Bowman (Hometec) and Murray Spink (Giant) weren’t enough to derail the sprint trains in the closing laps of the A Grade race. Warren Knevitt (O’Mara Cycles) ended up stuck on the front a little too early, which allowed the Cycling-Inform express to take over, but it was Daniel Nelson (Croydon Cycleworks) who cleaned up with his maiden win by a clear margin.
Brendan Rowbotham (C-I) held on for second ahead of a fast finishing Dale Woonton. In the next rank were Danny Kah (C-I), Garry Pollack (O’Mara) and Zane Hunter (Seight Custom Clothing).
Alex Holden was another debutant on the winners’ list, with a great sprint to take the D Grade prize ahead of the consistent Serge Krepak, Sebastian Presley, Ben Walkerden (Trail Mix) and James Sgardelis. Alana Field (Felt) claimed the women’s win with a determined ride in her first appearance in the big leagues.
Photos courtesy David Stannus an Michael Eaddy. Mike’s full gallery can be seen at https://plus.google.com/photos/103110114927998248117/albums/5798989930975654881
|A Grade||50 riders|
|B Grade||61 riders|
|Women’s B Grade||5 riders|
|C Grade||48 riders|
|1||Angus||Lyons||Ballarat – Sebastapol|
|Women’s C Grade||6 riders|
|D Grade||35 riders|
|2||Serge||Krepak||Southern Masters t|
|Women’s D Grade||2 riders|
|F Grade||30 riders|