A new course record and fastest time for Mick Harris wasn’t enough to claim victory in a race of power on Long Swamp yesterday. John Scott-Hamilton continued his great run of form to record back to back wins and catapult himself to the top of the Road Racer League.
With some serious algorithmic adjustment and impressive colour-coding having been applied to the handicaps this week, Johnny was joined by Jason, Hammy and Kirky and they shot off, some 12m:40s in arrears of Go rider Jacqui King. The quartetet obviously worked well, pulling back time on the one-minute group ahead. The clock would also show that they put time into the four Block riders behind them, and by the turn they’d latched onto the back of two larger groups ahead. As a result, a monster 14-strong bunch navigated the half-way turn with the Eagle soaring and the bunch really starting to motor.
Further back, Block had struggled and were consumed by Scratch after just 10km. They were just about hanging on to Mick Harris, Dave Munday and Brent Rees who were powering along but the combined bunch still turned 1m:40s in arrears of the Johnny train with work to do.
At three-quarter distance, Jacqui was still in the lead and with a chance of a win. Behind her, Jo and Olive’s group had been caught by PC and Greg Flynn and potentially this bunch could also survive to the finish. It was not to be however. On the lower ramp of Dump Hill, Scratch got into the bunch in a big way and with just the final part of the climb to go, it was the worst possible time for Hammy to puncture. His race was over but Johnny, Pat Ferris and Tom Simmonds were still going hard. A brutal late charge from Mick Harris almost overhauled them but ultimately he had to settle for fourth spot and fastest time on the day.
Several records were blown into the weeds as a result of the race. Mick’s own course record from April this year was eclipsed with Mick, Dave and Brent all getting over the 41kph barrier for the first time, with Mick also the first rider to get under 44 minutes on the hilly course. There were PBs for six riders in total, Johnny, Pat Ferris and Tom Simmonds adding their names to the Scratch trio.
Things have also been blown around at the top of the Road Racer League with Johnny now level on points and also average points per race with Clint, but taking the number one spot courtesy of his two first place results.
Many thanks to Houlty for putting the signs out and running the race and congratulations to Johnny and Mick for another fine win and fastest time. Next week we’re sticking with Road Racer as we reach the half-way point of the season with a fast and furious 30km event on Dangarsleigh – Johnny’s favoured course, but can he make it three in a row?
|Rider||Place||Handicap||Lap 1||Lap 2||Elapsed||Adjusted||Avg|
|HARRIS Mick||04||0:16:00||0:21:39||0:22:20||0:59:59||0:43:59||41.20 FT|
|REES Brent (Inv)||07||0:16:00||0:21:39||0:22:30||1:00:09||0:44:09||41.04|