April 22, 2018 – Rising Sun Trophy – Windmill with Wall finish

2018 Autumn Classics 

Rising Sun Trophy
handicap

22nd April

Windmill with finish over “The Wall” – 56 km

EVCC 2018 Rising Sun Trophy - poster

Rising Sun Trophy

In honour of those
who served their country

in peacetime and conflict

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Perfect cycling conditions – clear blue skies and barely a breath of wind – for the 2018 Rising Sun Trophy race.
With no need to form into echelons to shelter from wind, the groups were able to ride and work more consistently.  Twenty nine riders warmed up (including two trial riders) and everyone wore a smile to be out on such a glorious autumn day…

The Limit group rolled off at 30 minutes.  Mark O’Callaghan was slotted into this group as he returns to race fitness.  He joined Graeme Parker – who won the 2017 edition of the Rising Sun Trophy – Terry Collie, Mal Rock and trial rider Marika Ley.
Parker suffered two punctures early in the race and was out of contention.  The others rode on, with O’Callaghan more than happy to ride well within himself and help the bunch.

The 23 minute group included Jacqui Dawson and trial rider Kirsty Reid; Phil McLennan and the Lee brothers – Kevin and Brian.
Mechanical issues cost this group as Reid and McLennan retired to the sidelines for mid-race repairs.  They continued on, however their race was now a training ride.
The Lee brothers were too strong for Dawson and were able to hitch a lift with the chasing 19 minute group as they swept by.

The 19 minute group fielded a cracking lineup, many of which had never seen such a large number against their name.
Led by James Gretton with able support from Danny Whelan, Peter Livitsanis, James Knipe, Bob Morley and regular Northern Cycling visitor – Noel Said – the group soon found their mojo and everyone contributed.  Gretton used his massive engine to great effect as he drove the bunch at high speed on the fast sections, he owned those downwind sections.  Little guys were hanging on as best they could, bigger guys were trying to help out without hindering Gretton’s efforts.
They rounded up the 23 minute group (brothers Lee joining in the workload) and soon had the Limit riders in their sights.

A long, long wait for the 5 minute group, who finally set off with controlled their start.  Ash Burke had been promoted and the bunch were keen not to overextend him, or anyone else early.  Powerhouse Matthew Ayres gradually ramped the pace up.  Andrew Rushton, Rob Phillips, Bob Braszell and Dean Wells all played their parts.
Wells suffered a flat on the third lap, however the group still held a 90 second advantage over Second Scratch.

Second Scratch enjoyed a 90 second buffer over the Club Champion – Tim Canny – who was the sole rider off Scratch.  Canny closed within 150 metres halfway through the race, however it was just a gap too far as the Second Scratch group rolled away from his grasp.

Second Scratch was an interesting mix of riding styles – Stuart Brien, Rob Ellis, Matt Bowman, Brendan Schiemer and Greg Ley.  Unfortunately they lost Matthew Bowman at the very start of the race when he suffered a mechanical.  Bowman eventually got underway and joined Canny for half a lap, before easing out of the race and enjoying a training ride in the sun.
Second Scratch gradually closed the distance to the 5 minute group, however the race for the trophy was more than five minutes up the road…

The all powerful 19 minute group thundered through the final lap with the pace staying high.
Gretton, Said, Knipe, Whelan and Morley shouldered the work as they raced towards the “Wall”.  Victory was almost assured, nothing was coming from behind on this windless day to steal their glory!
The race was anyone’s at the base of the climb.  Riders glanced at each other to see who would make the first move…

In true spirit, our man Gretton thrust himself forward.  His muscles rippled, glistening with beads of perspiration as he surged upwards…then he slowed…then slumped as the wiley Whelan launched his own attack and quickly opened a gap.  Said tried to follow and Morley who relishes hill climbs tacked onto the smaller rider’s wheel.  Gretton, Knipe, Livitsanis and “Popeye” Lee are dropped, but this hill has a kick, can they rally?

Over the steepest part of the climb and Whelan increased his advantage as the road levelled out.  One last surge over the final rise and Whelan was away with an insurmountable lead.  Said was chasing hard and Morley was still tight on his wheel.  Knipe comes over the hill next, Gretton follows…

Down to the line and Whelan wins comfortably.
Said is putting all the effort he can into the downhill sprint, but Morley packs too much punch a claims second by a length.

Minutes later the 5 minute group reach the foot of the Wall with Second Scratch hot on their heels.  Second Scratch know that they are racing for Fastest Time.
At the base of the hill they are even, then the usual suspects exert their climbing authority as they pass the steep section and kick away.  Ley is chasing Schiemer…who makes a gap and holds it to the line.

Results:
1st – Danny Whelan (19 minutes)
2nd – Bob Morley (19 minutes)
3rd – Noel Said (19 minutes)
4th – James Knipe (19 minutes)
5th – James Gretton (19 minutes)
Fastest Time – Brendan Schiemer (1 min 30 sec) in 1h 26m, ave. 39.0 Kph

 Photo: Due rewards for the selfless Danny Whelan.

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EVCC - Autumn Classics 2018 - poster

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