Warm and sunny conditions greeted a solid turnout of 24 riders, and with the tough 40km parcours on the menu everyone had bidons topped up ready for a tough day out on the bike! It would also serve as outstanding prep for next weekends NSW Masters Racing in Coffs Harbour…entries close midnight tonight so if you were inspired by the days racing then get signed up!
It was great to see a large GO group hit the road, and with 7 riders aboard including current RROTY contender Jacqui King, and Captain Creagan at the helm they would take some catching! Given the extra KM’s racing the handicapper had wisely put riders into larger groups, allowing those who worked together to take advantage of their numbers to eke out some recovery over the longer race distance.
Next off at 5:30mins was a strong quartet of Nick Plummers, Chris Belson, Lachie MacPhie, and Chris Stace. They in turn had a healthy gap to the next group on the road at 11min, which had a motley crew of 7 riders, including in form Brent Weston, and current RROTY leader Richard Wilko. The block trio were off at 15:30min, with John Scott-Hamilton also in the hunt for precious RROTY points, with Pat Ferris and Andy Robb willing accomplices! Last off at 18min, the block quartet of “Ironman” Mick Hoult, Jason “Chairman” Simmonds, Paul “Hammy” Williams, and a returning Tom Simmonds, who must have been wondering what his nickname could be!
As riders hit the turn, first up was Hugh Mckellar who had surged off the front of GO, although on such a long race going solo would be a questionable strategy. Hot in his heels was the rest of the GO group who had the Captain in control; although soon after turning he lost control of his bidon, and to Col’s horror he chose to sacrifice his race to rescue the misplaced bottle! Just 2mins behind GO, the 5min quartet were closing nicely; but at a further 4mins back the 11min group were struggling to make headway on those ahead, and closing in fast were the block trio 1:30 back, and hot on their heels was the Scratch express at just a further minute back.
As riders tired on the long drag up from Salisbury waters, the race started to open up. Even though they has lost the Captian, the GO group stuck together through it all as old heads Swanny, Wilf, Jo Wauch & Jacqui took control. And it was this point that Nick Plummers launched his bid for glory, and having assessed the conditions with a tailwind at his back and a predominantly downhill return, there was method in his madness. The remaining 5min trio continued to push hard behind, while the 11min group fractured and Codie Miller & Brent pushed on in a bid to catch those ahead. Block lost the Eagle at this point, and although Scratch was flying, Tom “City Slicker” Simmonds was feeling the pace after a term of living the good life in the big smoke, and although Scratch would catch block and they would work strongly till the end, the time gaps would be too big for them to make an impression on the front of the race, although at the end the Chairman would have the consolation of taking out the fastest time on the day.
As riders crested Knobs hill and made the run for home Nick Plummers blasted through the GO group to hit the front, and solid riding would ensure a comfortable win at the end after a really strong ride – well done Nick! The rest of the 5 min group were not far behind, and edging out second place in a sensational sprint was Chris Belson, with Lachie just pipped at the post to take out 3rd, and Chris Stace rolling in just behind for 4th. A great finish from Jo wauch saw her mop up the last RROTY points in 5th place. Some nice work from the handicapper saw the race close up at the end, and all riders from first-to-last finished within 5mins of each other…well done for all riders for some great teamwork on a tough course!
Thanks to Houlty for doing the signs, and Col for manning the turn and getting the timings. Next week we return to Boorolong for 30km of scratch racing, and wish good luck to all those ACC riders representing the club at the NSW State Masters in Coffs Harbour!
|SIMMONDS Jason||2019-09-14||15||0:18:30||0:51:40||0:28:07||1:19:47||1:01:17 FT||40||39.162|