Spring racing continued with sunny conditions on the demanding Boorolong course: cross and head wind on the way out and a fast return leg promised an exciting 30k scratch race.
A depleted C Grade of three riders started proceedings without Jacqui, PC and Wilko (on sign duty), and the challenging winds made for a difficult outward leg for the C-trio of Swanny, Jo and Wilfried. Five minutes later a huge B Grade of 15 riders were set off, and this group had somehow stayed together over the first part, although a few were starting to get hurt charging up Black Hill. Brent (surely on his last ride before promnotion to A Grade?), Hugh Munday and Nick Plummer put pressure on the bunch and the swirling wind helped to break up the peloton going up the railway crossing. By the Twisties a lead group of six (Nick, Hugh, Andrew May, Brent, Alex and Dene) had put some distance on the rest and they turned closely behind the C Grade riders, who had been encouraged along the way by Col (in his role as DS) to stay ahead till the turn – mission accomplished! The lead B1 bunch swept past C Grade on the false flat going up to Claremont Ridge,; Super-Swanny and Jo “I am Woman, hear me Wauch” managed to get on the back – no such luck for Wilfried, who saw the bunch motor away and had to continue on his lonesome….
A second set of riders had formed as B2 coming back down the Twisties, and Keglegs, Clint, Chris Belson and “Road Warrior” Wilko set about reeling in their erstwhile comrades. Unfortunately, Keglegs had a major mechanical and the group lost impetus and never made contact with the front. They did reel in Wilfried after the dam turnoff and stayed ahead of the rest of the scattered A and B Grade riders, including a fast-charging Hurricane Harris. A serious sprint saw Hugh (“I haven’t been on a bike for yonks”) just beat Nick and Brent, followed by Dene, Alex and Andrew in somewhat under 52 minutes. Swanny had come in with the group and Jo finished well ahead of the next bunch, with Clint taking out the sprint for the B2 set.
A Grade started 6 minutes after the huge B group and, despite instructions and all good intentions, transformed the scratch race into a series of attacks and individual TTs. The Harris family were joined by Pat and Shaun and guest riders Ollie (still from Penrith, soon to be an Armidalian) and Dusty Wilks from Inverell. You may remember that Dusty won his first ever road race a few months ago with a late charge up the Muur de Dangarsleigh (training with World Tour racer Dylan Sunderland must be paying off, although not today…). By the Twisties, A Grade had splintered and solo riders started to charge through the remnants of B Grade, but the tailwind on the return leg made it impossible to catch up with the well-organised B1 and B2 groups. The Hurricane came in first in what was undoubtedly a super-fast time for A Grade, followed by Olly, Holly and Shaun (sounds like a comedy act).
Thanks to Wilf for the race report, Pete Wilko for signs, and Col for running another superb race. Next week will be the finale for the 2019 RROTY on Dangarsleigh. Will The Eagle be able to snatch the coveted trophy from the Road Warrior? The pressure is definitely on the handicapper……..
The road season will end with a couple of TTs and the Club Championship, as well as a “fun” gravel race before we head back to the crit track. Don’t forget the AGM on Wednesday, 2 October at the Bowlo!