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September 13 & 14, 2014 – Scratch races and Eureka Open

September 13 & 14, 2014 – Scratch races and Eureka Open

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Mt Misery Race Results

Mt Misery Scratch Racing

27 July 2014

Scratch racing returned to Learmonth with this week’s racing on the Mt Misery circuit. Early morning fog thick enough to be a danger to shipping delayed the start but did not dampen the enthusiasm of the 22 racers in three grades. Special thanks to this week’s guest reporters, Dean and Lisa.

A Grade

Seven riders fronted the starting line, earlier there were a few groans when out of the early morning fog Shane Miller rolled up to the clubhouse – so much for an easy day.

However, rumours started to circulate that Shane had exerted a lot of effort during the Melbourne to Ballarat on the Saturday. Maybe he hadn’t recovered from his duties of waving the chequered flag… Tony Mirabella was up front telling everyone that his legs were tired after actually ridding in the Melbourne to Ballarat.

Bob Braszell was his usual quiet self before rolling off for some pre-race mechanical adjustments which subsequently held up the A Grade start for five minutes.

Finally the A graders rolled off into the heavy fog of the neutral zone. The pace was quick to pick up and on the first rise, but still in the neutral zone, Craig Fromhold and Andrew “Sparky” Rushton put in a half attack. Phil Cartledge and Dean Wells tried to chase this down, but the early escapees had opened a considerable gap as they started swapping turns.

Bill Goldfinch was having none of this. He quickly drove up to Craig and Andrew and reminded them that they were still in the Neutral zone. Bill’s adjudication allowed the A Graders to regroup before the actual race started.

Turning into Edmonston Road the group tactics were plain to see, leave Shane on the front into the wind. This lasted until Dean rode up from mid pack and took over the lead as they crested the hill. Phil rolled through as the bunch neared the turn into Langi Kal Kal Road.

The Mt. Misery climb started with the bunch spread across the road. Dean lost contact halfway up the rise but tacked onto the rear of the bunch over the crest.

Shane had gone to the front by this stage and put the whole bunch in the gutter as he gradually ramped the pace up to 38 kmph. This thinned the bunch rapidly as first Dean then Bob fell off the back. Unfortunately for Phil he was behind Boband was slow to realise a significant gap had opened. He was able to cross to Tony, but Tony was also for the plank.

Up front, the three leaders had opened a considerable space. Andrew was clinging to Shane’s wheel and Craig was hanging on grimly as they neared the rises near Waubra Road.

In one kilometre Shane had decimated the bunch. Shane later commented that he didn’t know the circuit too well and that the fog was good because couldn’t see the rises ahead – no one else thought that!

At the rear of the bunch Dean found the gap to Bob was too large, whilst Bob was chasing Phil and Tony who had joined together. Over the rises Craig eventually fell away from the leading bunch and dropped back to Tony and Phil. That ended Bob’s hopes of catching their group. Both Bob and Dean were left with 35 km individual time trials just to get home.

Up front Sparky was working turns with Shane however Shane was concerned for the punch of Sparky’s sprint and was determined to take his legs away before they got to the finale. They turned into Weatherboard Road and Shane put in a few efforts up the rise and was able to drop Andrew and sustain his lead, riding hands and heels to a comfortable victory.

Andrew was desperate to hold onto second and kept the heat on to hold the chasing group at bay. He crossed in second, well clear of the Craig who was able to outsprint both Tony and Phil. Bob rolled through next with Dean a long way behind in the Lantern Rouge position.

Results

1st        Shane Miller

2nd        Andrew Rushton

3rd        Craig Fromhold

 

B Grade

Michael “Sawbones” Veal continued his winning form with a well-timed sprint to eclipse Peter “Fifi” Livitsanis and Bob Morley on the line.

Only B Grade in name, the racing was on early for the six starters. A few skirmishes into the wind on Edmonston Rd signalled the intent of this race. For some reason Bob Morley was particularly keen to slice and dice the field as quickly as possible, perhaps the pre-race trash talk had strengthened his resolve. He quietly passed around the order, as soon as the group turned left onto the Misery hill and a side wind, Fifi was to halve the road, only providing shelter for two, of course Bob was one of those. But Brian Lee, Albie “Honolulu” Govan and Matt “Trashman” Ritchie were not. In the fog the climb up Misery seems to go forever and with Fifi and Sawbones sustaining a fast climb, Honolulu and Trashman began to struggle, Fifi attacked the final short steeper ramp and they were unhitched. Bob, Sawbones and Fifi raced the top and attacked downhill, by the time they caught C Grade, Brian had lost contact too.

Truce was declared and the remaining three worked turns to build an advantage. Brian continued to chase for all he was worth, and on the downwind section along Black Bottom Rd he was joined by Honolulu and Trashman who had decided not to put their swords away just yet. Bob, Fifi and Sawbones could see them dangling back there, about 500m off, raging against the machine, and rode tempo along Ercildoune Rd to maintain the gap and tease them a bit more. Sawbones was enjoying the ride so much he had time (and the breath) to remark on the scenery.

Into Weatherboard Rd for the run home and the headwind discouraged any insane move up the hill, they had the podium, it was just a matter of what order. Downhill Fifi tapped his brakes which put Sawbones on the front, Bob sat back a few bike lengths probably looking to hit the other two with a flyer. At the farm gate the lightweight Fifi launched, back wheel dancing all over the shop like a mad woman’s breakfast, Sawbones had no trouble grabbing a back wheel that was literally spinning in mid-air, and with a steady acceleration all the way to the line he outgunned Fifi to snatch a close one. Mr Consistent Bob kept his gun in its holster but still grabbed another podium placing in third. For his courage and never surrender attitude Brian thoroughly deserved Ride of the Day.

Results

1st       Michael Veal

2nd      Peter Livitsanis

3rd       Bob Morley

Ride of the Day:          Brian Lee

 

C Grade

After an encouraging 5th last week, Terry Collie has found some (very) early Spring form to conquer C Grade in a sprint finish.

 

You’d be forgiven for thinking the handicapper had waved his magic wand and pulled the C grade names out of a hat. The race board listed a mix of abilities and experience, combined with a few ‘not-in-the-race-today’ riders, and the group of 10 stood at the start line wondering what the hell was going to happen.

“Still got a lot to learn” Lisa and Brad took off at the front from the start and that’s where they stayed for the neutralised section of the race. In between huffs and puffs up the Weatherboard hill Lisa commented that Coach Bob’s voice was in her head colourfully telling her to get off the front. Meanwhile, Terry Collie and Jude were behind discussing the finer points of the American and Australian political systems, with not a huff or a puff to be heard as they cruised up the hill.

Turned right and things immediately kicked up a gear. The two Terry’s (Constable and Collie) were through to the front while the group got organised. John Creek and Ken kept things together at the back, while Terry Collie and Graeme kept things organised up front. Over the hills and through the fog, the motley group stuck together, everyone relishing the chance to ride in a decent sized bunch.

As they tip-toed through the turbines, the fog began to lift. Jude more than held her own up and down the hills. Rob Parker was momentarily gone, but those who knew him were sure he would make his way back, and he did. Brad was gone, but in the opposite direction – he was off the front. Realising just how far he still had to go, he returned. Tony, also held his own in the larger group. Lisa got dropped, and then dropped again, but made her way back with some coaching, and a sugar fix from Ken.

It wasn’t until about ¾ of the way up Ercildoune Road that things began to splinter. Brad, Tony, Rob and Lisa were gone, with the 2 Terry’s, Graeme, Ken, John and Jude left to battle it out up and over Weatherboard Road. A left turn, a nasty hill and a nastier headwind, and the final 6 had to dig deep. It was Terry Collie who dug the deepest as the finish line came into sight, sprinting for a convincing win. Ken crossed over second, but as another not-in-the-race-today rider, chose not to accept. So second went to Graeme Parker and third to a deserving Jude who rode a consistent and impressive ride.

Moral of the story – the motley bunch brought together a little bit of magic!

 

Results

1st        Terry Collie

2nd        Graeme Parker

3rd        Jude Jonasson

 

 

July 27, 2014: Scratch Races, My Misery Circuit, 48km

Scratch racing returned to Learmonth with this week’s racing on the Mt Misery circuit. Early morning fog thick enough to be a danger to shipping delayed the start but did not dampen the enthusiasm of the 22 racers in three grades. Special thanks to this week’s guest reporters, Dean and Lisa.

A Grade

Seven riders fronted the starting line, earlier there were a few groans when out of the early morning fog Shane Miller rolled up to the clubhouse – so much for an easy day.

However, rumours started to circulate that Shane had exerted a lot of effort during the Melbourne to Ballarat on the Saturday. Maybe he hadn’t recovered from his duties of waving the chequered flag… Tony Mirabella was up front telling everyone that his legs were tired after actually ridding in the Melbourne to Ballarat.

Bob Braszell was his usual quiet self before rolling off for some pre-race mechanical adjustments which subsequently held up the A Grade start for five minutes.

Finally the A graders rolled off into the heavy fog of the neutral zone. The pace was quick to pick up and on the first rise, but still in the neutral zone, Craig Fromhold and Andrew “Sparky” Rushton put in a half attack. Phil Cartledge and Dean Wells tried to chase this down, but the early escapees had opened a considerable gap as they started swapping turns.

Bill Goldfinch was having none of this. He quickly drove up to Craig and Andrew and reminded them that they were still in the Neutral zone. Bill’s adjudication allowed the A Graders to regroup before the actual race started.

Turning into Edmonston Road the group tactics were plain to see, leave Shane on the front into the wind. This lasted until Dean rode up from mid pack and took over the lead as they crested the hill. Phil rolled through as the bunch neared the turn into Langi Kal Kal Road.

The Mt. Misery climb started with the bunch spread across the road. Dean lost contact halfway up the rise but tacked onto the rear of the bunch over the crest.

Shane had gone to the front by this stage and put the whole bunch in the gutter as he gradually ramped the pace up to 38 kmph. This thinned the bunch rapidly as first Dean then Bob fell off the back. Unfortunately for Phil he was behind Boband was slow to realise a significant gap had opened. He was able to cross to Tony, but Tony was also for the plank.

Up front, the three leaders had opened a considerable space. Andrew was clinging to Shane’s wheel and Craig was hanging on grimly as they neared the rises near Waubra Road.

In one kilometre Shane had decimated the bunch. Shane later commented that he didn’t know the circuit too well and that the fog was good because couldn’t see the rises ahead – no one else thought that!

At the rear of the bunch Dean found the gap to Bob was too large, whilst Bob was chasing Phil and Tony who had joined together. Over the rises Craig eventually fell away from the leading bunch and dropped back to Tony and Phil. That ended Bob’s hopes of catching their group. Both Bob and Dean were left with 35 km individual time trials just to get home.

Up front Sparky was working turns with Shane however Shane was concerned for the punch of Sparky’s sprint and was determined to take his legs away before they got to the finale. They turned into Weatherboard Road and Shane put in a few efforts up the rise and was able to drop Andrew and sustain his lead, riding hands and heels to a comfortable victory.

Andrew was desperate to hold onto second and kept the heat on to hold the chasing group at bay. He crossed in second, well clear of the Craig who was able to outsprint both Tony and Phil. Bob rolled through next with Dean a long way behind in the Lantern Rouge position.

Results

1st        Shane Miller

2nd        Andrew Rushton

3rd        Craig Fromhold

B Grade

Michael “Sawbones” Veal continued his winning form with a well-timed sprint to eclipse Peter “Fifi” Livitsanis and Bob Morley on the line.

Only B Grade in name, the racing was on early for the six starters. A few skirmishes into the wind on Edmonston Rd signalled the intent of this race. For some reason Bob Morley was particularly keen to slice and dice the field as quickly as possible, perhaps the pre-race trash talk had strengthened his resolve. He quietly passed around the order, as soon as the group turned left onto the Misery hill and a side wind, Fifi was to halve the road, only providing shelter for two, of course Bob was one of those. But Brian Lee, Albie “Honolulu” Govan and Matt “Trashman” Ritchie were not. In the fog the climb up Misery seems to go forever and with Fifi and Sawbones sustaining a fast climb, Honolulu and Trashman began to struggle, Fifi attacked the final short steeper ramp and they were unhitched. Bob, Sawbones and Fifi raced the top and attacked downhill, by the time they caught C Grade, Brian had lost contact too.

Truce was declared and the remaining three worked turns to build an advantage. Brian continued to chase for all he was worth, and on the downwind section along Black Bottom Rd he was joined by Honolulu and Trashman who had decided not to put their swords away just yet. Bob, Fifi and Sawbones could see them dangling back there, about 500m off, raging against the machine, and rode tempo along Ercildoune Rd to maintain the gap and tease them a bit more. Sawbones was enjoying the ride so much he had time (and the breath) to remark on the scenery.

Into Weatherboard Rd for the run home and the headwind discouraged any insane move up the hill, they had the podium, it was just a matter of what order. Downhill Fifi tapped his brakes which put Sawbones on the front, Bob sat back a few bike lengths probably looking to hit the other two with a flyer. At the farm gate the lightweight Fifi launched, back wheel dancing all over the shop like a mad woman’s breakfast, Sawbones had no trouble grabbing a back wheel that was literally spinning in mid-air, and with a steady acceleration all the way to the line he outgunned Fifi to snatch a close one. Mr Consistent Bob kept his gun in its holster but still grabbed another podium placing in third. For his courage and never surrender attitude Brian thoroughly deserved Ride of the Day.

Results

1st       Michael Veal

2nd      Peter Livitsanis

3rd       Bob Morley

Ride of the Day:          Brian Lee

C Grade

You’d be forgiven for thinking the handicapper had waved his magic wand and pulled the C grade names out of a hat. The race board listed a mix of abilities and experience, combined with a few ‘not-in-the-race-today’ riders, and the group of 10 stood at the start line wondering what the hell was going to happen.

“Still got a lot to learn” Lisa and Brad took off at the front from the start and that’s where they stayed for the neutralised section of the race. In between huffs and puffs up the Weatherboard hill Lisa commented that Coach Bob’s voice was in her head colourfully telling her to get off the front. Meanwhile, Terry Collie and Jude were behind discussing the finer points of the American and Australian political systems, with not a huff or a puff to be heard as they cruised up the hill.

Turned right and things immediately kicked up a gear. The two Terry’s (Constable and Collie) were through to the front while the group got organised. John Creek and Ken kept things together at the back, while Terry Collie and Graeme kept things organised up front. Over the hills and through the fog, the motley group stuck together, everyone relishing the chance to ride in a decent sized bunch.

As they tip-toed through the turbines, the fog began to lift. Jude more than held her own up and down the hills. Rob Parker was momentarily gone, but those who knew him were sure he would make his way back, and he did. Brad was gone, but in the opposite direction – he was off the front. Realising just how far he still had to go, he returned. Tony, also held his own in the larger group. Lisa got dropped, and then dropped again, but made her way back with some coaching, and a sugar fix from Ken.

It wasn’t until about ¾ of the way up Ercildoune Road that things began to splinter. Brad, Tony, Rob and Lisa were gone, with the 2 Terry’s, Graeme, Ken, John and Jude left to battle it out up and over Weatherboard Road. A left turn, a nasty hill and a nastier headwind, and the final 6 had to dig deep. It was Terry Collie who dug the deepest as the finish line came into sight, sprinting for a convincing win. Ken crossed over second, but as another not-in-the-race-today rider, chose not to accept. So second went to Graeme Parker and third to a deserving Jude who rode a consistent and impressive ride.

Moral of the story – the motley bunch brought together a little bit of magic!

Results

1st        Terry Collie

2nd        Graeme Parker

3rd        Jude Jonasson

July 20, 2014: GP Doug Garley, Doug Garley Circuit, 48km

Michael Veal, resplendent in his wool jersey and riding a steel horse, surged ahead of the final stampede on the gravelled road of despair to take the choice cuts and his very first handicap win. A good crowd had assembled on the hill top finish to witness a worthy champion of a special race.

Many of us were fortunate enough to know, ride and race with Doug to whose memory this race is dedicated. He was a man of great inner strength and charity of soul who loved bike racing, especially when the conditions would cause the resolve of others to falter. He was the original “Hardman” and he would have loved this race. I’m sure many of us found something a bit extra when the hard questions got asked today.

With its iconic gravel section, it’s a dusty drive-train clogging, puncture-dodging suffer fest, a mid-year nightmare that’s definitely not for the faint hearted. To be successful racers are required to be students of pain, at cycling’s core lies pain, hard and bitter as the pit inside a juicy peach. Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet, only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. First law of cycle racing: Suffering becomes beautiful when one bears great hardship with cheerfulness.

Rollin’ Rollin’ Rollin’

Though the streams are swollen

Keep them doggies rollin’,

Rawhide

The first to saddle up were Terry Collie and Graeme Parker, both dedicating themselves to some hard riding they stayed clear of the chasing groups for the first lap. They were being chased by a group of four likely gauchos, Brian Lee, Matt Ritchie, Greg Curnow and Kevin Lee on a very noisy bike in desperate need of maintenance. Greg was bucked off this group by mid race and while persisting he was unable to rejoin.

Rain and wind and weather

Hell bent for leather

Wishin’ my gal was by my side

The remaining 3 caught Terry and Graham and this combined group lasted at the head of the race until the last 5km, Terry lost the back wheel in Learmonth and was caught by the chasing bunch, he was grovelling so low there was no room for his shadow but he managed to jump on the back, and was successfully transported back to the front of the race. His Lazarus return even the more inspiring when he found an extra gear on the final hill to take 5th place – never surrender!.

All the things I’m missin’

Good vittles, love and kissin’

Are waiting at the end of my ride

 The middle markers were favoured by the weather conditions, which are usually atrocious in July, but today light winds and dry roads made for fast racing. With red eyes blazing and snorting fire Scott Denno was demonic in his quest to round up the field and bbq the race. Bob “Red Baron” Morley had steaked a claim on a podium spot and was also keen to make minced meat out of his opposition (or his legs, whatever it took). Peter “Fifi” Livitsanis is always keen to see his posse do well and pinned his ears back and dug in on every rise. But it was Michael Veal calling the shots today, cracking the stock whip when needed to keep the boys on the hunt. The first group caught were a mob of cows on Davenport Rd, an interesting and unusual race variable which delayed the pursuit temporarily, but the front of the race was coming back steadily.

 Keep movin’, movin’, movin’

Though they’re disaprovin’

Keep them doggies movin’,

Rawhide

 On the last lap the front of the race came into view and into the Avenue for the final time the groups came together. With nothing but tumbleweeds behind, the final showdown was going to be between these remaining 9 cowboys. Kevin “Chuck Wagon” Lee was the first to spice things up lifting the tempo, Scott tapped Veal on the rump and they took off, Fifi drove forward to fillet their escape plan and went into Davenport Rd first to maintain position, Chuck Wagon surged forward again with Matt Ritchie on his tail, stretching sinews in the bunch. The narrow dirt road favoured an attack from the front and Fifi obliged kicking hard at the bottom of the final rise, Kevin was for the chop and Matt was well done. Michael Veal dug the spurs in and lasso-ed Fifi’s wheel, bullocked his way to the lead, then left him, riding clear to victory. For the minors Bob got caught in the crush, “Moo-ve over” he bellowed, but his elbows weren’t sharp enough to cut through the traffic and he got do-se-do’ed backwards. Scott had already burnt all his sausages but was determined for a high finish and gapped Bob on the hill, Scott taking 3rd and Bob 4th.

 Don’t try to understand ‘em

Just rope, throw, and brand ‘em

Soon we’ll be livin’ high and wide

The back of the race was close at the finish, but with over half the field in the back two groups they were expected to rip a hole right through the race, red flags and bulls didn’t mix well and delayed these groups on several occasions. Second scratch mustered on the start line and were galvanised in grim determination. With a meagre 2 min start on scratch they rode like wild things to hold off scratch until the 2nd lap, this effort cost the scalp of Dean Wells. Grant Dawson was suffering the effects of a long night of hero worship at Le Tour, while new rider Craig Fromhold, Rob Phillips and Rod Hetherington provided a lot of the heavy lifting and Richard Taylor rode well to stay with his group for the race even after scratch caught up with them.

 My heart’s calculatin’

My true love will be waitin’

Be waitin’ at the end of my ride

A talented Scratch bunch included a dynamic Phil Cartledge, Dan Hale, Darryl Stewart, Bob Braszell, Jonathon Lacey and Guy Falla in a supercharged V8 pursuit, but perhaps not gelling as well as they could, and hampered by beasts and traffic alike, managed to roll up second scratch relatively early but the front of the race remained elusive today. Guy “Mad Max” Falla, our post-apocalyptic hero, flicked the nitrous button on the dirt for the final time to shatter the field and sprinting to take fastest time, only Craig from the second scratch bunch able to stay close, sprinting for fun really as Guy had fastest time.

For persisting on his clanky ride way beyond the point any other rider would have turned for home, and continuing to try to tear it apart to make it go faster, Kevin Lee scored ride of the day. No doubt his prize money will help buy a new chain and some lube.

Move ‘em on

(Head em’ up!)

Head em’ up

(Move ‘em on!)

Move ‘em on

(Head em’ up!)

Rawhide!

 

Cut ‘em out

(Ride ‘em in!)

Ride ‘em in

(Cut em’ out!)

Cut ‘em out

Ride ‘em in,

Rawhide!

 

Results

1st        Michael Veal

2nd       Peter Livitsanis

3rd       Scott Denno

4th       Bob Morley

5th      Terry Collie

Fastest time       Guy Falla

Ride of Day         Kevin Lee

 

 

 

 

 

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