Archive for the Open Race News Category

G V Dookie Open – race review

As seen from the 22 minute bunch
Up at 0540 and a quick breakfast while making a jam sandwich to eat on they way up the highway.  Meet Darren and Shaun at Richard’s  place and we set off.  Traffic is light and we arrive a bit before 0845 and off to see Mary for a number.  Check the program, 22 minutes and I’m pleased as expected to be at least a bunch further back.  Shaun’s got 12:30,  Richard 10:00 and Darren 7:00 (third scratch).  Scratch is chasing 4:30 to second and limit is 37 minutes.
Already it is starting to get hot, get togged up pin on the numbers and today is a two biddon day. Out with the pump, 130 psi today as from memory the roads are not too bad. Now warm up – not too much today just need to spin up the legs as I don’t think 22 will be blasting off the mark. Usual story try to get the message to the bunch that we need to talk.
So were off.  A K or so of flat then the rode starts to rise must be careful the bunch does not implode within the first few kms.  Lost one already then Allan Barnett disappears – four are working – Kay Huggins is riding well.  And so it goes, up hill and down dale (there is not much actual flat road here).  The course is a bit like the letter p.  Head out to a right turn then three circuits then back into town.  We pick up riders one at a time, always only a single rider, those in front are falling apart so it is imperative we hold together.
Into the second lap just before a nasty little pinch “a bunch is coming”.  Let’s get over this steep little pinch before we get caught.  That done and they are no closer and we are not caught until the top of the long sweeping climb.  Ok one lap to hang in with these guys from 18:30. Good Lord Allan Barnett is here and working some turns, he must have come good.  Pace is solid but  feel Ok and seem to go up the hills a little better than most and no word of a bunch behind.  So now we are virtually on the home stretch, one last hill to go.  It lights up at this point but fifteen or so make it over the top.  Not sure of the number as am too busy to look behind.  Somebody has gone solo off the front and no frantic chase.  Then we are in the little dogleg over the rail line and the sprint has already started.  How many in front ?  I reckon I must have got 8 9 or 10, did not have a whole lot left.  The guy off the front has stayed away, good for him – it was a bold move.
Roll down the road and turn around ahh there is Shaun, Darren and Richard.  Back at the start line and here comes scratch.  Watch Leigh Egan give a demonstration as he gets the time by five lengths.  At the presentations they say he has never been beaten for the time in a Vets Open -what a machine.  Winner averages 34.4 and scratch 40.97 not bad for a hilly course.

Shaun has ridden well and Richard as usual was rock solid.  Darren apologized to his bunch at one stage for riding them off his wheel (turns out they were too slow on the hills) awesome. He has averaged 38.5
Now that we have stopped the perspiration starts in earnest, wash, have a can of iron bru keep washing with the face washer, have a can of Coke,  wipe face again.  Eventually the body normalizes  and we go in for the presentations. Cannot get licence back yet as Steve Auld has hit the deck and Mary and Harry are still out with him.  Sounds like he has done some damage.
Take a wrong turn on the way back so we go home via Euroa but all are satisfied with a tough ride.  Bendigo in two weeks.

Eureka open run and won

Eureka open run and won

Clarke First and Fastest

Congratulations to Eastern Vets Roy Clarke, who won this year’s Eureka Open handicap in a thrilling bunch sprint, taking fastest time in the process.

In good weather conditions, over 80 riders contested the 62km event held on the Mt Misery circuit at Learmonth. With limit at 27 minutes, the challenge was set for the Scratch riders who haven’t contested a finish in any of this year’s Opens to date. The Scratch bunch had some in-form riders, the likes of Steve Young, Neville Laffy and Tony Mirabella combined to form a potent force that quickly made in-roads on the time gaps to the bunches in front. With Roy continually driving the bunch hard they rounded up the 2 minute bunch and conscripted Andrew Joiner and Peter Keil into service, these two riders acquitting themselves very well.

One bunch after another Scratch rattled through the field and by mid race had captured and dispatched the middle markers and were in hot pursuit of the front markers. The front markers were not giving up their advantage easily and the Scratch bunch didn’t grab the front of the race until the last km or so. Rodney Cheyne rode a great race off 18:30min, riding through and clear of the bunches in front he looked the winner until the dying stages on Weatherboard Road when Scratch flew past, Rodney hanging on to pick up a well earned 10th.

The race came down to the final sprint, no lead outs here, the top four place getters lining up across the road in a test of speed and strength. Roy Clarke had more than enough to win by a length from Steve Young and Neville Laffy with the fast finishing Tony Mirabella flashing home for fourth.

Thanks to the VVCC for staging the event, and a special thanks to those Eureka Vets and friends of Eureka Vets who volunteered their time to ensure this year’s Open was a resounding success.


1st                        Roy Clarke (Scratch) – Eastern

2nd                        Steve Young (Scratch) – Geelong

3rd                        Neville Laffy (Scratch) – Goulbourn Valley

4th                        Tony Mirabella  (Scratch) – Eureka

5th                        Brian McNamarra (Scratch) – Warrnambool

6th                        Andrew Joiner (2 min) – Central Victoria

7th                        Mathew Grealy (4 min) – Hume

8th                        Peter Keil (2 min) – Eureka

9th                        David Tozer (Scratch) – Warnambool

10th                      Rodney Cheyne (18:30 min) – Gippsland

Fastest:                 Roy Clarke (1:24:18, 41.42km/hr)

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