January 29, 2017 – Windmill, 53 km Graded Scratch racing

January 29, 2017 – Windmill, 53 km Graded Scratch racing

Season Opener – 29 January 2017

Graded Scratch

Windmill circuit – 53 km


As the lazy days of summer holidays
draw to a close,
The attention of the cycling world,
once again turned,
To the start of a new cycling season,
at Eureka. ?

With great anticipation,
the class of 2017 assembled,
Kit bags emptied of old bananas,
and leftover sandwiches,
Clean shoes and freshly laundered jerseys,
with hair washed and neatly parted,
but for one notable exception. ?

What glory would the new season bring,
Who is in form,
is that a new bike?

The anxious needn’t concern themselves, cycling is a sport that you get out what you put in, (problem is, most put in blood, sweat and tears and get the same in return).
In glorious sunshine an expansive field of 25 were organised into four grades for a three lap season opener around the Windmill circuit.
A new year brings new riders, and this year Eureka are pleased to welcome Jeremy Vanderklift, Stephen Birem and Tim “Junior” Canny.  All acquitted themselves well in today’s affair and are most welcome to their new club.  Good hunting gentlemen.
We also welcomed back our prodigal son – Greg “Cadel” Curnow – recently returned from his extensive world tour as a psychology lecturer, also Brad “Crit Monster” Eppingstall who was perhaps looking for a shorter and flatter parcour to break in his new bike (and his old legs).

A Grade

Tim “Junior” Canny looks barely old enough to shave let alone be signing on for a vets race, or perhaps the rest of us are just getting older.  Nevertheless Tim brings an injection of cycling talent into A grade and Eureka is better for it, and today his maiden outing with his new club proved very successful.

A relative small field of 4 class riders challenged for the first A grade event of 2017.  As is their want, A Grade avoided an attacking style of racing instead settling for essentially a time trial training event with placings settled on the last lap.
Fear not, this was no social outing with tea and scones, Dean “all sunglasses and thighs” Wells, Matt “Riff Raff” Bowman and our club champ Greg “Marathon Man” Ley all excel at this style of racing and managed to average close to 40km/hr – for a scratch race – insane.
No attacks of any description on the first two laps, however Riff Raff was reacquainted with the rear of the field going up Quarry Hill on the second lap.  Matt got back on and the “team time trial” continued.

Third lap and the fun and games started with the race going straight into the gutter.  Little if any wind virtually eliminated that tactic, so Bowman took a fly off the front 400 metres before Quarry Hill.  Wells wasn’t worried, he knew that together with Canny and Club Champion Greg Ley they would easily reel Bowman back in by the top of the climb.  Canny wasn’t so sure though – having witnessed Bowman ride off and not get caught in Ballarat Sebastopol CC races – so he gave chase.  Wells and Ley both had to commit to bridge the gap.  Ley made it just as they reached the hill but Wells was still off the back and couldn’t rejoin.

Racing through Blowhard and Bowman attacked again.  Ley attacked going up Cricks Hill, then Canny opened a small gap.
Holding just a few lengths, he gradually ramped the pace up.
The gap eventually opened to 100 metres and try as they might Bowman and Ley couldn’t shut it down.  Bowman made a late solo effort, but Canny held a comfortable 50 metre advantage to the line…averaging 40 kph for the race.

1st – Tim Canny
2nd – Matt Bowman
3rd – Greg Ley


B Grade

His golden locks streaming out behind him, Rick “Rapunzel” Calvert is cultivating a new image for himself, however if he’s not careful “Rapunzel” might become “Catweasel”.
Today Rick provided never ending nuisance value, insisting on a little spurt every time the race went uphill.  The chagrin of the field was mild as they drew him back into the fold each time with relative ease.
Tour director of the TdU training camp for hopeful elder Ballarat riders, the original Canny – Peter – favoured a low profile approach to the race, never on the front unless by mistake, he bided his time somehow foreseeing a bunch sprint for glory.
The story was much the same for Matt Ayres, who never professes to being fit but manages to stay with what ever field he’s placed in and then whip them in the sprint.
After a fractured 2016, Grant Smokey Dawson has returned seeking to impose himself once again as the hard man in the bunch, he only has two speeds, go and stop and today it was all go as he ensured an honest pace to test the rest.
New member Jeremy Vanderklift was welcomed to Eureka with a start in solid B grade company, many of whom contested last year’s club championship race.  The rest of the bunch were wise to treat him with caution as Jeremy proved to be yet another hard riding ring-in from the east.
Rob Phillips has reached a stage in his life where he never ages and never goes out of form, finely tuned, and sinewy he seldom exceeds 80 rpm and has forgotten what the top of his cassette is for.

So as predicted by the soothsaying Canny, the race came down to a sprint and Matt Ayres proved to have the juice to account for rivals, out-gunning Phillips and crafty Canny for the win.

1st – Matt Ayres
2nd – Rob Phillips
3rd – Peter Canny

C Grade

The handicappers keen eye sees all, he had studied the entrails and consulted the cycling gods and as a consequence James Gretton was elevated a grade as penance for pre-season training.  He joined 8 others in a new look C Grade.  James is riding well and had little difficulty slotting into the race.
Roger McMillan has also cemented his spot in faster company, although today he looked like the poor orphan having to borrow an old Eureka pyjama jersey from the lost property basket, he rode comfortably and featured in the finish – for all the wrong reasons.
Mark O’Callaghan had just dried himself off from his summer triathlon training and looks in superb nick.

The race began with a flurry of furtive attacks as riders tested each other but soon settled to a solid tempo until Danny Fidel Whelan took exception to riding with so many people and decided on a long range solo attack.  He was quickly joined by visiting rider, the diminutive and geographically challenged Noel Said, together the pair separated themselves from the bunch by 50 metres, and that’s where they stayed for the next lap or so.
The bunch were organised into a holding pursuit by Bob Muncher Morley, who was determined to let the pair fry out the front – it also calmed the rest and eliminated further attacks.

After having completed the first lap, Noel “Goldfish” Said missed a left hand turn, by the time he recovered the bunch had sped passed still chasing Fidel.
Without Noel to regulate his enthusiasm Fidel’s madness expanded as he surged past B Grade and continued with his futile escape. Eventually the bunch had had enough of his antics and by the quarry it was all back together and settled for an inevitable final sprint finish.
That’s when the “Scarlet Pimpernel” Brian Lee emerged from cover – most had forgotten he was even in the race – not keen on sprints Brian tried one of his trademark drawn out drags attempting to ride a few out of his wheel.  As he began to fade, Stephen Biram wound up from the back of the bunch and exploded off the front in a spectacular “skyrocket” attack (lots of speed and fire, then – poof!).

Into Donovan’s Rd all together and everyone jostled for wheels, some good, some not so.
With 500 metres to go – just like Easter eggs in Coles in January – Roger opens the sprint far too early.
It did catch a few by surprise and fractured the bunch.  Mark was thanking his lucky stars for such a well organised, professional and sacrificial lead out and went around the fading Roger and looked home, until the renaissance man Muncher Morley surprised him with a late gut-busting burst to pinch victory on the line.
The powerful Biram unleashed a commanding sprint and distanced the rest to finish third.
It’s been a long time between drinks for Bob and Ken stretched the presentation out to keep him waiting a bit longer for his podium glory.

1st – Bob Morley
2nd – Mark O’Callaghan
3rd – Stephen Biram


D Grade

If the measure of a cyclist is his/her ability to persevere then the assembled D grade were draped in greatness amassed from years of “ordeal by veto”.  Their halcyon days may be fading memories, but these are tenacious and competitive sportsmen that fear no pain and never shy away from a contest.
John Faulkner has spent so much time this summer recruiting new riders that he just forgot about pre-season training, apart from a few quick trips to the shops for milk and bread his training has just consisted of today’s race.  Nothing like racing to get race-fit, and his abbreviated outing today will help.
Brad “Crit Monster” Eppingstall is also eyeing off future targets as he re-acquaints himself with racing, a new bike is a clear indication of renewed enthusiasm.  He was also a DNF today, but the endurance and power are likely to return quickly.
After a year he’d rather forget it was great to see a rejuvenated and eager Rob Young suited up and ready to go.  So today it was mostly a race in four, Graeme Parker, the evergreen Terry Collie, princely Rob Young and the venerable orator of Eureka Greg Curnow.

A fairly evenly matched quartet with no grand designs to attract the handicapper’s attention early in the season with foolish solo wins off the front.
Down to the line and Collie opened up his sprint first, instantly opening a gap on Parker and Curnow, however Young was tucked in behind.
Rob swung out with 50 metres to go and powered over the top for a two length clear victory.
A tight tussle for third saw a determined Curnow just edge an ambivalent Parker.

1st – Rob Young
2nd – Terry Collie
3rd – Greg Curnow

200 Race milestone

Eureka also celebrated the new inductees to the prestigious 200 Race club –
Bob Morley, Peter Livitsanis and Terry Collie join Tony Mirabella on the honour board.
Congratulations to these club stalwarts.

2016 Eureka Presentation Night

2016 Eureka Presentation Night

Club Stalwarts Honoured

The Eureka Veterans Cycling Club held their 2016 Presentation Night at Seymours On Lydiard during December.
The private function was well attended and saw Greg Ley receive his Club Champion trophy and sash.

Tony Mirabella was announced as the winner of the Club Aggregate.  Tony won eight races during the season.
Peter Livitsanis and Bob Morley were second and third respectively in the aggregate.

Peter Livitsanis also took home the Steelsmith Trophy.  Adam Smith at Steelsmith Engineering has proudly presented this trophy each year.
The encouragement award recognises the efforts of the recipient throughout the year.

A highlight of the night was the awarding of Life Membership to Lois and Bill Goldfinch.
Volunteers are the lifeblood of many sporting clubs – the Eureka Veterans Cycling Club is fortunate to have so many members who perform many duties which enable the club to function effectively.  Lois and Bill have been active volunteers at Eureka since the club was formed in 2009.
Lois and Bill have a great passion for cycling and often volunteer for other Veterans clubs major cycling races.

The Eureka Veterans Cycling Club thanks all the volunteers, sponsors and members for making 2016 a successful year.

The 2017 racing season commences on Sunday 29th January.

Picture (courtesy of Matt Ayres): Club President Ken Heres with Life Member recipients Lois and Bill Goldfinch.


December 4, 2016 – Commodores Cup – Windmill, 52.5 km Handicap

December 4, 2016 – Commodores Cup – Windmill, 52.5 km Handicap

Final Race For Season – 4 December 2016

Commodores Cup


Windmill circuit – 52.5 km


Collie Claims Commodores Cup

Summer arrived for the final race of the 2016 Eureka Season.
The time honoured Commodores Cup (52.5 km handicap) was raced on the iconic Windmill circuit,
which was bathed in brilliant sunshine and swept with a fair north wind.

Eight riders were backing up from a 130 kilometre ride from Ballarat to Lorne on the previous day – congratulations to them all for a BIG weekend of riding.  Rocky manned a corner, as did Marika and Darwin (the big cuddly labrador); Lois and Lyn manned the kitchen; Bill and Bill performed referee duties; Pete Livi was stand in handicapper and Nunny was crowd control…those Taylors are a rowdy lot!

Graeme Parker set sail as the lone limit rider.  At twenty five minutes, he was going to be out through the heads before the porters had even packed the Scratch riders luggage.  Big effort though!  The wind was strong and Graeme’s knee has been giving him hell all year, yet here he was backing up after a 130 km ride the day before.

Richard Taylor headed up the 15 minute group – savour those words, because they will NEVER be repeated!
Crook as the galley rat, Richard would lead his band of merry men…but take no part in any chase downs if someone from the group broke away!
John Creek was out for another race, as was Brian Lee, James Gretton and club stalwart – Terry Collie.

Peter Livitsanis handicapped himself off a whopping 9 minutes with Danny Whelan, Mark O’Callaghan, James Knipe, Roger McMillan and visiting rider Noel Said.
It’s always great to have visiting riders come and race with Eureka…we particularly like Noel because he doesn’t bloomin’ win every time he races with us! Noel was once again surprised by just how much water was in lake Learmonth…and the water is STILL running in…according to Rocky…
Back to Pete Livi giving himself NINE minutes!  Then again both he and Dan were also backing up from the 130 km Lorne ride.

The 4 minute group saw Matthew Ayres, Grant Dawson and Ricky Calvert heading out into the maw.
Chasing SIX…being chased by SIX.  Tough day ahead especially with Rick also backing up from the Lorne ride.

Scratch had probably the largest group they had assembled all year.
Club Champion Greg Ley was resplendent in his newly won blue and white phoenix dossard.  The other fresh legs in the group belonged to Robert Ellis.
They were joined by four riders who had given their all in the previous day’s ride to Lorne (and also the bus ride back home!) – Tony Mirabella, Andrew Rushton, Brendan Sheems and Dean Wells.

So the race panned out like this:
Battle the cross wind on the road past the quarry; heads down and butts up into the wind towards Cricks Hill; ramp up the speed down Creswick-Addington Rd; spinnakers out and let ‘er rip down Donovans Road with the tail wind.
STRAVA tells us there were Personal Records all over the place.
Scratch broke 27 minutes on the first lap; slowed down for a lazy 27:30 on the second lap; then brought it home with another sub 27 minute lap.
They lost Rushton on the second lap, but picked up Ayres, Calvert and Dawson.  Ayres soon fell off and Wells was struggling.  Early powerhouse Mirabella was also struggling, but Ley and Schiemer were able to assist Ellis as he started to take longer turns out front.

Up ahead, the 9 minute group had lost Livitsanis and O’Callaghan and hadn’t been able to reel in the leaders.  McMillan succumbed to the wind, but Knipe, Said and Whelan were left in no man’s land.

The race lead was where the action was at.  Gretton had been unhitched from the 15 minute group, leaving Taylor, Creek, Collie and Lee to chase down Parker.  Upon the catch, Parker was able to find the sweet spot and hitch a ride.
The last time up Cricks Hill saw Lee unleash a powerful effort and split the group.  Collie was able to go with him, but Creek and Parker were left in arrears. Taylor kindly explained that he wasn’t allowed to chase, so Creek and Parker swapped turns as Lee and Collie gradually stretched the lead.

Into Donovans Road and the leaders were clear with Knipe, Said and Whelan still paddling in between them and the Scratch boys.
At the rear, Ellis had put the race in the gutter and blown apart the Scratch bunch.  Good and bad really.
That left just three to chase down the leaders, but at least they didn’t have to worry about any passengers beating them.  The Scratch trio caught and passed the remnants of the 9 minute group, but the leaders were a step to far.  Not so much an ocean sized gap…more a lake.

Collie and Lee settled down to fight out the sprint with Collie prevailing over a gallant Lee who had made the race.  Creek was just strong enough to take out third ahead of Parker.
The Scratch lads were right behind.  Schiemer taking the sprint for fifth place (and Fastest Time) ahead of Mirabella in a close finish.

Thank you to all involved for yet another great day of racing!

1st – Terry Collie (15 min)
2nd – Brian Lee (15 min)
3rd – John Creek (15 min)
4th – Graeme Parker (25 min)
5th – Brendan Schiemer (Scratch)
Fastest Time – Brendan Schiemer (Scratch) in 1hr 21m 15s

Picture: Terry Collie and Brendan Schiemer congratulate each other on jobs well done.


November 27, 2016 – WAYNE HORNE EARTHMOVING Spring Criterium Series, Rd 3 – Production Drive, Alfredton

November 27, 2016 – WAYNE HORNE EARTHMOVING Spring Criterium Series, Rd 3 – Production Drive, Alfredton

Wayne Horne Earthmoving

Spring Criterium Series
Round 3


Graded Scratch Races – 27 Nov 2016

Production Drive Circuit, Alfredton


The final criterium of the 2016 season was conducted on dry roads…
a perfect day for bike racing – cool, dry and cloud cover…
riders stepping up in grade to test themselves…
new riders “trying out” veterans racing…
a great day to be riding!

A Grade

(45 minutes):  BANG!  They’re racing!!
No messing about with the Scratch boys today as Dean Wells took them out at a ridiculous pace…then Brendan Schiemer rolled through and kept the momentum going…then Tony Mirabella jumped and had them all gasping as they brought him back…then Matt Bowman launched…for THREE laps.
Rob Phillips was an early casualty of the insane pace and Wells was yo-yoing before ten minutes were up.
Not much changed as surge after surge from Schiemer and Mirabella were countered by Bowman.
Wells finally off the back only to come through – when the “machines” finally eased the pace – and lead for a few laps.
Schiemer took out the mid race sprint.  A few laps later and the Bowman show had whittled the field down to three.  Still 15 minutes to go!

An easing of the pace in the last few laps saw Wells almost time trial back on by the bell lap…but the leaders ignited the afterburners with 500 metres remaining.
A messy sprint saw Schiemer ease (and stay upright!) and Bowman take the win from Mirabella.

1st – Matt Bowman
2nd – Tony Mirabella
3rd – Brendan Schiemer

B Grade

(40 minutes): James Knipe and Roger McMillan both stepped up to see if they could mix it with the “B Grade mafia”.
Messrs Livitsanis, Morley, O’Callaghan and Whelan were happy to have some new blood in the ranks…until Knipe went off the front.
O’Callaghan went off the front for a few laps as well, however for the most part the lads played nice.
Livitsanis took out the mid race sprint and he showed a touch of class in claiming the win from Knipe and an impressive McMillan.

1st – Peter Livitsanis
2nd – James Knipe
3rd – Roger McMillan

C Grade

(35 minutes):  A humble affair which saw the riders perfecting their Team Time Trial positioning more than attacking each other.
The mid race sprint was taken out by Jeremy Humber who was out having his “trial ride” with the club.
Graeme Parker was often seen marshalling the troops and making sure the pace didn’t slacken.
The bell lap saw Terry Collie increase the pace as the other riders jostled for wheels.
In the final analysis, James Gretton packed too much punch for his rivals and took the win.

1st – James Gretton
2nd – Jeremy Humber
3rd – Terry Collie



Wayne Horne Earthmoving Spring Criterium Series results (for interest sake):
12 points maximum available (3, 2, 1, for placings, plus 1 point for riding in each race)
10 pts – Tony Mirabella
8 pts – Peter Livitsanis
7 pts – Roger McMillan, Brendan Schiemer
6 pts – Terry Collie

Wayne Horne Earthmoving have been a long time supporter of our cycling club.
Located in Wendouree, Wayne and the team have all the equipment to perform all civil engineering
work from residential properties through to industrial estates.


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