It was a day to be suited up with the new club race-suits, as a svelte and aero looking John Scott Hamilton surged his streamlined kit for a first A grade win of 2019!
A markedly cooler day saw conducive racing conditions, and 22 riders rolled up to the start line to test their legs ahead of the club crit championship next weekend. And to keep riders on their toes, Col implemented a new grading system comprising 3 categories – Super-A for the strongest A grade riders, Super-C encompassing a mix of lower B and C grade, and a third category that Col generously described as “middling” with a mix of lower A grade and stronger B grade riders.
Super-A set off for 40min+3 laps with 7 riders champing at the bit; next off was the AB group of 8 riders for 35mins+3; Super-C rounded off the racing groups on the road for 30mins+3 with a motley crew of 7 riders.
A superbly marshalled race meant that even with 3 groups on the track, the day saw incident free racing with no group overtakes required and everyone could focus on the business at hand. And with the new grades making for competitive racing in all groups, this meant that all 3 groups would come down to a bunch sprint at the end of some solid racing.
First to finish was Super-C, with Dave Jenner pipping Dene Bourke in an epic sprint for the line, with Chris Stace rounding out the podium just ahead of Richard Wilkinson.
AB was next and the pace was ramped up on the last couple of laps by Mitchell, before Clint Bourke surged up Crit hill and just has enough left in the tank to hold off a fast finishing Rob Tindale, with Swanny taking out 3rd and ice-cold Billy Mara cruising into 4th spot.
Super-A wrapped up proceedings with the Eagle swooping down the finish straight for a comfortable win, with Pat Ferris taking second, and Houlty just holding off Jason and newly minted race-machine!
Thanks to Col for some great work with the re-jigged grading and race marshalling, and Captain Creagan for setting up the race kit.
Rest up those race legs, and we’ll see you back next week for the Club Crit Championship.