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August 31, 2015 – Eureka Open – 57 km – Mt. Misery

August 31, 2015 – Eureka Open – 57 km – Mt. Misery

The 2015 Eureka Open has been run and won.  Geelong & Surf Coast CC have finally got their winner (after providing the runner-up in the Eureka Open three years in a row).
The country cycling clubs ruled the roost with only one prize (out of 13 prizes on offer) going to a city club.

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(Photo – Finish line sprint finish)

Bravo to everyone who was able to make the starting line.  Out of the 93 riders entered, only seven failed to start on a day when conditions were gloomy.  It was a cold day, but the rain and drizzle stayed away for the duration of the race.
The course started and finished just south of the Club rooms and followed twisting-turning course that eventually went in every direction on the compass, to circumnavigate Mt.Misery anti-clockwise – for a race distance of just under 58 km.

Conditions for the 10AM start remained very cool with a light wind from the south.
The Limit riders had a forty minute start on Scratch – with eight groups in between.

2nd Limit quickly imploded as Megan Parnaby (Grampians) maintained a fearsome pace and dropped all bar one of her companions.  Only Ray Hodgson (Eureka) was able to stay with Meg, yet by the tiny hamlet of Addington Ray made a tactical decision to let Meg fly free.

The 20:30 group (4th bunch on the road) made good early progress and had made up the three minute gap to the group in front by the half way point of the race.  They then caught the remnants of 2nd Limit along Ercildoune Rd and appeared to have the race at their mercy as the groups chasing them behind were not making big enough inroads into their lead.

2nd Scratch enjoyed a 6 minute buffer over Scratch, however they failed to work smoothly early in the race.  The stronger riders took control of the bunch after the climb out of Addington.  20 kms into the race they had finally started to work smooth turns, but were now picking up riders who had been jettisoned by their own bunch.

Scratch set off at a blistering pace and had shed two of the nine starters by The Avenue of Honour.  One by one they fell off the back and by the climb out of Addington, Scratch had been reduced to just three riders…Trent Stevenson (Goulburn Vally), Ash Hall (Central) and Timshel Knoll-Miller (Warrnambool).
By eliminating the “main dangers” from the Scratch bunch, they had set themselves a monumental task in trying to win the race with so little (albeit impressive) firepower at their disposal.

As the race wore on and bunch by bunch imploded, one rider remained alone out in front – Megan Parnaby still making every post a winner – holding a few hundred metres advantage.  The chase bunch had Meg clearly in their sights as they raced down Hendersons Rd towards the final turn, but they didn’t want to close the gap too quickly.
Meg was eventually swept up at the small rise before the pig farm.

Turning into Windermere-Sulky Rd for the 2.8 km run to the finish the lead group had been whittled down to just 12 riders – however there were only ten prizes on offer.  In the sprint for the line Jamie Robinson (Geelong & Surf Coast) edged in front from Gerard Hickey (Colac) and Jane Clifton (Colac).
Fastest Time narrowly went to Trent Stevenson (Goulburn Valley) in a sprint finish with Timshel Knoll-Miller.  Trent crossed the line in 20th place and had only failed by two minutes to catch the entire field.
For host club Eureka, Barry Robinson (a relative of the winner, Jamie Robinson) was the best placed rider finishing a close 4th, with Terry Collie 6th and Robert Young 10th.

There were many stories from the day…

Noel Said travelled to Ballarat to compete in his first Open race…unfortunately the Eureka Open was being staged at Learmonth (not Ballarat) – some 20 kms out of Ballarat.
Noel got to the club rooms in time to register and get changed.  Noel made it to the start line in time, but had not pinned his race number on…so he made a mad dash back to the club rooms, then back to the start.
Noel eventually finished in 62nd position. We hope he continues to race in Opens in the future!

Greg Curnow competed in the Eastern Vets CC Graded Scratch races (at Learmonth) on Saturday, he had a very tough day at the office by all reports – getting dropped and left to ride the race by himself.
Even Greg wouldn’t have thought that things could get tougher at the Eureka Open…
Greg lasted (with his 23:30 min bunch) all of 50 metres before flatting.  Most riders would have welcomed the opportunity to say ‘oh well, I tried’, then retreated to a hot shower.  Not Greg though.  He set about repairing his flat tyre then restarted the bike race alone.
The 12:00 min bunch picked him up before the first turn and Greg tried to hang on.  Group after group dropped Greg and by the halfway point (turn into Black Bottom Rd) he was already a clear last with only the tail car for company.
Three riders abandoned the race on this day, not our Greg though!  He completed the race (83rd and last) 24 m 41 s behind the winner after virtually riding the race without a bunch.

Congratulations to Jamie, who is also the first Geelong & Surf Coast rider to win the Eureka Open.

1st – Jamie Robinson, Geelong & Surf Coast CC, (23.30 min) in 1h 44m 4s.  Average speed 33.42 kph
2nd – Gerard Hickey, Colac VCC, 23.30 min.
3rd – Jane Clifton, Colac VCC, 20.30 min.
4th – Barry Robinson, Eureka VCC, 20.30 min.
5th – Amanda Hosking, Geelong SCC, 20.30 min.
6th – Terry Collie, Eureka VCC, 20.30 min.
7th – Tina Stenos, Geelong SCC, 20.30 min.
8th – Jo O’Shaughnessy, Grampians VCC, 20.30 min.
9th – Tony Lloyd, Grampians VCC, 20.30 min.
10th – Robert Young, Eureka VCC, 23.30 min.

Fastest Time – Trent Stevenson, Goulburn VCC, (Scratch) in 1h 22m 34s.  Average speed 42.13 kph

Visiting Veteran Ride of the Day – Noel Said, Northern CC

Eureka Veteran Ride of the Day – Greg Curnow, Eureka VCC

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(Photo – remnants of Scratch at 20 km)

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(Photo – 2nd Scratch/6:00 min, at 30 km mark)

August 23, 2015 – W.A.R.S. race 5 – 46 km – Weatherboard

August 23, 2015 – W.A.R.S. race 5 – 46 km – Weatherboard

2015 Winter Aggregate Race Series sponsored by Europa Café

The club kindly thanks Kathryn and Jason for coming on as new sponsors in 2015.

Europa Café is located right in the centre of Ballarat at
411 Sturt Street.
Just a block and 1/2 “up” from the Town Hall, Europa Café is perfectly situated close to the Central Square shopping precinct.
If you are visiting from out of town definitely put Europa on your to do list…
if you are a local Kathryn, Jason and the team look forward to seeing you again and again and again…

Open everyday from 7:00am for breakfast and lunch.

www.europacafe.com.au

Europa Cafe logo s

The final race in the 2015 W.A.R.S. played out in confusing circumstances akin to a Fawlty Towers scene.

Location – hotel lobby

Sybil walks in from office: ‘You won’t forget to tell them where it finishes?’
Basil looking for something in the shelves under the front desk: ‘No Dear’
Sybil inspecting the sign in book: ‘And explain the distance and number of laps correctly’
Basil rolling eyes: ‘Yes Dear’
Sybil walking back into the office, calls out: ‘And how many laps do they do?’
Basil bumping head on desk: ‘What?’
Sybil walking back in from the office: ‘I said, how many laps do they do?’
Basil slowly standing up and looking around: ‘Four?’
Sybil frowning: ‘Well yes, four laps. But make sure they know that riding up to the circuit doesn’t count as a lap! Riding to the finish isn’t a lap either.’
Basil completely ignoring Sybil and answering just to placate her: ‘Yes dear’
Sybil looking cross and snapping: ‘Basil! It is very important!’
Basil startled and standing upright: ‘I mean yes Dear, I will make sure they know that the lap up to the laps isn’t a lap and the lap after the laps isn’t a lap either’
Sybil shakes head and walks back into the office.
Basil talking to the empty lobby: ‘No Dear, thank you Dear, after another medal for stating the bleeding obvious are we? You old dragon’
Basil continues talking to the empty lobby: ‘Well of course they won’t count riding up to the laps as a lap, it’s not a lap, it’s riding from the starting place out to the place to do the laps before riding to the finish place which isn’t a lap either, I mean really, why don’t we just have it tattooed on everyone’s…’
Sybil walks back into the office: ‘What was that?’
Basil startled: ‘Oh I was just saying don’t worry they’re in safe hands Dear.’
Sybil glares, shakes head and walks back into the office: ‘You really have no idea’

And so it came to pass that the advertised 56 kilometre handicap race was reduced to 46 kilometres after the entire field rode one less lap of the Weatherboard circuit than was required.
Being the last race in the 2015 Winter Aggregate Race Series also meant that there was effectively two races being run…the race for overall victory in the series and the race for line honours on the day.

John Creek was leading the Winter Aggregate Race Series by a few points from ‘Stay Away’ Ray Hodgson and Peter ‘Fifi’ Livitsanis.  The winner of the W.A.R.S. would come from this trio.

At the front of the race, (limit riders) Ray Hodgson and John Faulkner were managing their efforts so that when the inevitable “catch” came, they would be able to hang on and maybe contest the final sprint.

Second Limit containing Greg Curnow, Graeme Parker and Rob Young were riding even turns and steadily chewing away at the advantage the Limit riders held.

The “race within the race” was largely contested by the large middle bunch. Fifi entered the day determined to make every effort count. Sensing vulnerability in Creekie (whom had been carrying a cold all week), Fifi set a high pace from the start and kept driving his bunch which also included Creekie.
Creekie retired from the race early on after struggling with his cold and the demanding pace.

Back at the front of the race a lively debate was had regarding just how many laps of the Weatherboard circuit were required.  Receiving the bell swayed the majority of riders and they crossed Avenue Rd and headed down Hendersons Rd for “home”.

All the following groups followed suit – and so a complete lap was missed.

By this stage the lead group had dwindled to just four riders – Greg, Robert and Graeme pushing the pace, with Ray hanging on and recovering as much as possible for the final sprint.
In no mans land, John Faulkner was also racing towards the finishing line.

The 7 strong chase group had the leaders in their sights as they roared down Hendersons Rd…but the gap seemed too far…
The leaders rounded the corner at the Pig Farm and kept working together to ensure the win was theirs.

Nearing the finish and the lead bunch were looking around at each other – when Ray jumps out of the bunch and easily wins the sprint by 6 lengths from the 2nd limit riders.
John rolled through a minute later – still in no-man’s land.
The large chase bunch (which included Kevin Lee, Dan Whelan, Brian Lee, Bob Morley, Phil Cartledge and Grant Dawson) saw a lively sprint finish for 6th place contested by Pete Livitsanis and Dan Whelan…with Fifi just taking the honours.
A well beaten Scratch group rolled through soon after.

Results:
1st – Ray Hodgson
2nd – Robert Young
3rd – Graeme Parker
4th – Greg Curnow
5th – John Faulkner

A post race meeting by the referee group decided that no points would be allocated from this event for the 2015 Winter Aggregate Race Series.
It was established:
1. that all the competitors rode 10 kilometres less than the advertised race distance
2. the handicaps for the race were based upon a 56 km race – not a 46 km race
3. the shortened race put many riders at a disadvantage and impacted upon their chance to win

It was decided that the fairest option to finalise the 2015 W.A.R.S. was to use the points table that existed at the completion of race 4 in the series.

2015 Winter Aggregate Race Series – final standings
1st – John Creek
2nd – Ray Hodgson
3rd – Peter Livitsanis

In a final hommage to Basil Fawlty…
‘Listen, don’t mention the W.A.R.S. I mentioned them once, but I think I got away with it all right’

Europa Cafe logo s

August 16, 2015 – W.A.R.S. race 4 – 46 km – Mt. Misery Hcp

August 16, 2015 – W.A.R.S. race 4 – 46 km – Mt. Misery Hcp

2015 Winter Aggregate Race Series sponsored by Europa Café

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W.A.R.S. race 4, Mt. Misery Handicap

Stay Away Ray Rollicks Home

The Mt Misery circuit again proved a happy hunting ground for Stay Away Ray Hodgson who lead from gun to flag to take a convincing win.
Ably assisted by the enigmatic Greg “Cadel” Curnow, the limit pair took on the challenging parcours with determination.  Ray in particularly good form, from his current training regime which includes SUPERVET midweek racing.

You know when Spring arrives in Ballarat…the temperature of the rain is a bit higher, there’s 10 minutes more sunlight each day and that damn magpie is back on Weatherboard Rd swooping anything in sight!
Enjoying the Spring conditions, a small field of 14 riders were separated by some generous handicaps – which meant that apart from Tony Mirabella (who was chasing 1 minute) no groups actually caught anyone else – the race essentially becoming a time trial for most and a training ride for the rest.

The 15 min bunch of Barry Robinson, Graeme Parker and Terry Collie made up some of the 7 mins to Ray and Greg with dedicated and disciplined work, probably missing just one more rider to bridge the gap.
Terry is fast finding his groove and improved upon last week’s ride, while Graeme continued to be the heart and soul of this outfit.  They also welcomed back the evergreen Barry Robinson who rode strongly, only fading in the run to the line.
Their efforts rewarded with holding the chasing bunches at bay and picking up the minor placings.

Often a bunch with a Lee in it gets up, and with two Lee’s in this week’s 10 min bunch expectations were high.  Kevin Popeye Lee having a recent race under his belt, and the never-say-die Brian Lee welcomed Rob “Mr Smooth” Parker to their confederacy.  All three relatively lightly raced over recent weeks, this militia fought on bravely, glimpsing the race lead car late.
There was one minor spot in the money left and it was Popeye who kicked hard gapped Rob and Brian and sprinted for 5th.

The biggest group of the day had their work cut out for them.  Chasing 9 minutes to the next bunch and with the slenderest 1 min gap back to Tony Mirabella, the odds were not good for these 5 riders.  The odds took a further dive when Grant Dawson punctured early on Edmonston Rd and, although a little later than expected, Tony Mirabella the lonely scratch rider, caught them 8km in, at Addington.
Tony decided to play nice and jogged along with these mere mortal middle markers, content in the knowledge that fastest time was his even if they didn’t bring back the race.
Danny Whelan was in an aggressive mood and worked solidly on the front, John Creek eventually found his legs halfway in and rode well until late when Tony lifted the pace.
For the sure-footed Bob Morley, its been a while since he’s ridden off 1 min, but today he again applied himself and rode a strong race. For hanging on to Tony’s wheel on Ercildoune Rd, when all others were crying for mercy, he was also rewarded with Ride of the Day.

With the race up the road and gone by a long way, Tony sauntered off the front up Weatherboard Rd and away for fast(ish) time, 6 minutes behind the winner.

Results:
1st – Ray Hodgson (22 min)
2nd – Greg Curnow (22 min)
3rd – Graeme Parker (15 min)
4th – Terry Collie (15 min)
5th – Kevin Lee (10 min)
Fastest Time – Tony Mirabella (Scratch)
Ride of the Day – Bob Morley (1 min)


Just one more race remains in the 2015 W.A.R.S.
Only a handful of riders can win the aggregate, however every rider has a chance to win a voucher.

The winner of each race in the series has won a $50 Europa Café voucher.

The overall winner of the series will also win a $50 Europa Café voucher, as well as some sparkling wine to celebrate with.
Placegetters in the overall aggregate also receive sparkling wine for their achievements.

Europa Cafe logo s

The Eureka Vets CC are excited to welcome Europa Café on as a new sponsor in 2015.

Kathryn and Jason wanted to be involved with the club and we can think of no better place to relax,
either apres velo (after cycling) or just because it’s warm and friendly.

Europa Café is located right in the centre of Ballarat at
411 Sturt Street.
Just a block and 1/2 “up” from the Town Hall, Europa Café is perfectly situated close to the Central Square shopping precinct.

Europa is a spacious, inexpensive family style café, where the coffee is great and the buzz is lively.
The lunch/dinner menu is seasonal and ranges from Italian to venturesome and imaginative Middle Eastern and Asian dishes.
The wine list is extensive and admirable with many by the glass.
All day breakfast at Europa has become something of an institution.
If you are visiting from out of town you should have at least one breakfast during your stay…
if you are a local Kathryn, Jason and the team look forward to seeing you again and again and again…

Open everyday from 7:00am for breakfast and lunch.

www.europacafe.com.au

August 9, 2015 – Forty Winks Team Time Trial Hcp – 53 km – Windmill circuit

August 9, 2015 – Forty Winks Team Time Trial Hcp – 53 km – Windmill circuit

Forty Winks Team Time Trial. Windmill circuit. 53 km.

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It’s not often that we get to race as part of a team, usually our races are dog-eat-dog affairs (at least at the end of the race), so this week’s handicapped team time trial was a popular change of pace and the inclusion of a handicap meant all teams had a winning chance.

The C Team worked as a tight trio and while the other two teams boasted an extra rider, these three pushed out a gutsy ride to preserve the modest 5 min starting advantage until two thirds of the way into the race.  With Graeme Parker doing a lot of the heavy lifting and a very consistent Rob Young sharing the duties it became a test of how long would Terry Collie hold out.  Terry is just back from an extended break, he was a solid contributor, however his lack of race condition in the back end of the race became a factor.  Could they hang onto their undisclosed handicap advantage?
Once caught it was a case of chasing the stronger teams as hard as they could to limit time differences at the end.

The B Team spent the first 10 minutes discussing team tactics, much strategizing and theorizing came down to:
1) put Popeye on the back and get him to hang on
2) rotate short smooth track turns

Simple plans always work the best…
Danny Whelan only rides one big gear, the rest of the cluster is pristine and seldom used, and he rides a steady pace that never waivers whether into the wind, downwind, uphill or down.  Bob Morley continues to confound the experts by actually riding better with ever decreasing training, again today he never missed a turn and even put in extra to drag Popeye back to the other two on a few occasions.
The A Team cruised past on the last lap at the quarry, from there it was a case of trying to limit the distance the A team put into them, they seemed to disappear up Cricks Hill pretty quickly which didn’t bode well for the B Team.
By the end of the race Popeye was juiced, he had nothing left, just an empty husk of a man.

There was a noticeable variance of abilities in the A Team.  Guy Falla and Phil Cartledge both noted hard men particularly at grinding out a time trial, had to find a way to gel with Rob Phillips and Grant Dawson, two second scratch riders.
This was a puzzle that took a while to sort through especially as Guy disappeared up the road from the gun, so enthusiastic was he to get things moving.  Phil’s first turn on the front was to drag Smokey and Rob back up to the exuberant Falla.
The strategy they settled on from there was to share the work around but try to preserve Smokey and Rob by limiting their time on the front and into the wind.  This worked OK until the catch with both Smokey and Rob on the limit but managing to hang in there. Once they had reeled in the other two teams it was time to make time, and the urgency went up a notch up Crick’s Hill in the back straight.  This put Smokey into difficulty and by the top he was blowing smoke and the A team slowed to get him back on and recovered.

And the final analysis?
Well the start times might have been 5 minutes apart but the actually handicaps were set by averaging the marks of each of the riders in each bunch…so in effect there was more than 5 minutes handicap advantage between each of the groups.

When it came down to work out the handicap adjusted times it was very close, 40 seconds or less separated each of the teams.

Today’s winning team by just on 38 secs was the B Team, followed by the gutsy C Team in second and rounding out the trifecta was the A Team just 1 min 14 secs behind the winners.

Results:

1st – The B Team: Bob Morley, Danny Whelan, Kevin Lee, Peter Livitsanis

2nd – The C Team: Terry Collie, Graeme Parker, Rob Young

3rd – The A Team: Guy Falla, Phil Cartledge, Rob Phillips, Grant Dawson

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Special thanks go out to Forty Winks – Ballarat store – for their continuing sponsorship of the Eureka Vets.

Steve and the team at Forty Winks (Ballarat) have a bedroom solution for everyone in the family.
Forty Winks carry a huge range of beds, mattresses, furniture and manchester from well known brands such as
Sealy Posturepedic, King Koil, Sleepmaker, Serta, Tempur, Sheridan, Hiccups, Kas, Linen House, Tontine and many, many more.

FORTY WINKS
36 Peel Street, Ballarat
(03) 5333 1861

bedtimeforrubes-700-80

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