It was a tale of two Pete’s on Saturday for Round 2 of the 2017 Road Racer of the Year contest – a fast and furious 30km handicap on Boorolong Road. Pete Harris continued his devastating solo form on a tough hilly course that favoured the “puncheur” style he is becoming renowned for. He rode away from his group at the turn and with some help from in-form Clint Bourke, held out for his first club road race victory . Meanwhile, Pete Creagan, part of the chasing pack, backed up his 2nd place last week with a 5th today which sees him sitting pretty on top of the Road Racer of the Year leaderboard.
Some good last minute precision handicapping saw the four-strong Block and Scratch groups held back until 13:15s and 14:15s respectively ensuring a tough chase from the gun. Despite putting in 5 hours of morning training, Dave Munday was a prominent force for Scratch who made contact with Block before the railway line. Up ahead, Chris Stace and Captain Creagan had done well managing to make it up the Twisties before being caught by the pack behind. That pack included Pete “Puncheur” Harris who’d decided his group wasn’t quick enough and had ridden across to the 9-minute riders ahead before then also deciding he preferred his own company, launching another effort on the climb up to Claremont Road which only Clint could respond to.
By the Dumaresq Dam turnoff, Clint could no longer hold Spartacus but he was now being chased hard by a determined group including Keglegs, PC, Dr John, Bourkey and of course Col Maciver who were just 25s in arrears. Further up, Jacqui was still the lone rider between them and victory and she held out well until the hard flat section 2km from home, before being passed by Pete Harris and then swamped by the larger chasing pack. Holly was still very much in contact and working hard with Scratch around 15s further back but it seemed they’d left it to late when with 1km to go the leaders had around 100m on them with Spartacus out of sight. A final desperate drive brought Hugh Munday and Col into the midst of the bunch ahead but too late to stop Pete Harris from recording his first club victory by 5s from Richard Wilkinson and PC grabbing enough points to launch him to the top of the leader board.
Congratulations to Pete Harris on the win and well done to everyone for a rapid and hard-fought contest with very close handicapping for the most part. Thanks to Paul Williams for putting the signs out and to Houlty for helping with this and for running the race. Hammy has officially donated his 4 RROTY “sign duty” points to Houlty – a fine gesture and one deemed acceptable by the commissaire during the post-race rider briefing after carefully considering the strict and complex competition rules.
Next weekend is Easter so Captain Creagan has an extra week to bask in the well-deserved glory that only those who have experienced life atop the RROTY league can truly appreciate. We have an Easter criterium on the Saturday and then the following week RROTY Round 3 pays respect to La Flèche Wallonne including a finish atop the Mur du Mihi – more of that soon!
|MUNDAY Hugh||08||0:14:15||1:00:01||0:45:46||39.72 FT|