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Scratch Racing Results February 5

John Rhook showed the advantages of his special South Australian summer hill training regime to power away from a large A grade field and score an impressive first up win.

A successful start to the new racing season saw over 30 brave souls brave a wind that would blow a brown dog of its chain. Most were concerned they may not be able to finish let alone be competitive, however most underestimated their form and a competitive days racing was had, congratulations to all.

Rhook Rules the Roost

A Grade

Nine riders lined up in very blustery conditions. As the riders left the starter, all eyes were on Adam Smith the noted rider in the group. Someone spoke of the rumour that Black Caviar had a photo of Adam Smith’s legs on her stable wall when she was growing up.

Rob Phillips was looking the goods and was also tagged as a contender. The effervecent Phil Cartledge was going to one to watch on the back straight, he would be sure to launch an attack down the edge of the road. John Rhook was showing his usual early season form after a great summer on the bike.

The first lap saw everyone in the group toil away diligently and  it wasn’t until the group turned into Donovan’s rd that Cartledge cranked it up and split the field. Two riders tailed off and as the group crossed the line for bell lap only 7 remained. The quarry road was uneventful until Phllips tested the legs on the climb with Dave Peters contributing to the pain as they turned onto Coghills crk road, A-Grade new recruit Richard Taylor finding enough to hold on.  There were a few more test attacks down the back straight with strong man Darren Terry getting off the front for a short stint and returnee Andrew Rushton misjudging the distance to the Coghill Ck corner. As the group turned left off Coghills crk road Rhook played his cards in an all out effort to get away.He opened a small gap and settled in for a time trial to the finish line. With the aid of a big Northerly and a 300 metre gap as he turned into Donovan’s road the writing was on the wall. The bunch, chased hard, swapping turns to no avail. Rhook crossed the line for the win. Phillips lead the sprint out for second place but cashed his chips to early and Smith at full tilt on his 13 cog came by for second with Ken Heres hot on his tail in third.

 

Dean Wells Outclasses Field

B Grade

Ten riders greeted the starter, however the wind and a sharp start by Peter Livitsanis and Bob Morley put paid to three who were dropped in the sidewind rounding the first corner. However it was Dean Wells that was the dominant force in the race, clearly riding well above the level of the rest, he spent most of the race on the front. So effortless did he find progress that at one stage he was heard to ask Bob when would we start racing. Ably Govan and Brian Lee tried to keep the racing honest by making strong appearances at the front, with Murray Bardwell carrying the lantern rouge. With 6 riders left to contest the finish, the wind proved to be a factor again by putting Livitsanis into the gravel just before the Donovan Road corner. Up the rise with the tailwind encouraging him, Dean took off with Alby barely hanging onto his wheel. They soon gapped Bob, Brian and Murray. Dean found yet another gear and rode Alby off his wheel to win emphatically. The sprint for third saw Murray poke his head to the front for the first time all race.

 

Rock Keeps Getting Better

C Grade

An evenly matched group of nine riders contested C Grade.  The extremely windy and tough conditions made their presence felt early, with both Jacinta Welch and Mandy Rhook wondering if they would last half a lap.  The bunch started working turns, and worked well together for most of the race.  Mal Rock made a brave move on the Quarry hill on the last lap, and opened an unbeatable gap, despite the tough ride into the head wind alone on the Coghills Creek road. Debutant Matt Ritchie, the latest Morley recruit ( the Morley dynasty now includes Bob, Maz, Nick and Matt), took over command of the rest, and on the last turn he took advantage of the tail wind and rode away from the bunch. The ever improving Mandy Rhook chased hard and it was full speed to the finish line.  Rock-solid Mal sailed home to take the honours, with Matt Ritchie second and Mandy Rhook third.

 

Hodgson Wins Again

D Grade

Ray Hodgson continued on from where he left off last year in commanding style. He and new recruit Alby Chapman (yes Eureka Vet has 2 Alby s!) persevered into the wind, with Ross Waddington and Maz Morley sharing the work. Ray and Alby had to work hard to drop the determined Maz in the wind and then managed to drop Ross Waddington on the Quarry hill. Fortune was to smile on Ross as a mob of sheep slowed Ray and Alby sufficiently for him to rejoin. However this reprieve was only short lived as Ray and Alby continued their relentless grind up the hill into the wind, again dropping Ross. Left to slug out the downwind sprint, it was Ray with the largest spinnaker, easily taking the win and destined for C Grade in the near future.

 

Results

A Grade   1. John Rhook. 2. Adam Smith. 3. Ken Heres.

B Grade   1. Dean Wells 2. Albie Govan   3. Murray Bardwell

C Grade   1. Mel Rock    2. Matt Ritchie 3. Mandy Rhook

D Grade   1. Ray Hodgson 2. Alby Chapman 3. Ross Waddington.

Scott Townsend –Club Champion 2012

Weather looked threatening from the start of what turned out to be glorious conditions by the end of the race with 14 riders showing up to battle it out for the Eureka club championship, 70km consisting of 7 laps of the undulating weatherboard circuit.

From the start Scott Townsend took off from the front and the rest of the field were quite happy to let him sit out there for a while and let him warm his legs, the pace did however quicken and shut down the likes of Darrel Stewart each time he shot off the front in an effort to bridge the gap, as the rest of the riders knew how he took off the front in the Bendigo club championship, where there the riders did not give him respect and was up there in the results at the end.

Pace was not really hot and was always hovering around the 36 kmph mark, there were however remarks heard in the group about not letting Scott get too far ahead as “he can actually ride you know” so he was eventually brought back into the fold.

3 laps in, Ken Heres led a group of 4, got away coming up the Avenue.  Phil Cartledge tried to sneak quietly off the front & believed he was not being noticed & was hoping to join forces with the 4. But just as he thought he had got away with it, the group came storming back hot on the heels with an almighty charge from Scott Townsend which then nulled the race and brought it back to a sedentary pace.

Tony Mirabella then thought he would attempt a breakaway  and  was happy to set the pace on his own. Again the rest of the field were happy to let this happen but were equally not as happy to let any other attempts to bridge the gap and join forces, of which there were quite a few but none successful.

Last lap and a half, the have a go attitude of Peter Kiel saw him ride off the front of the group.  There was a big push with the rest of the group (surprisingly still together) to pull him back down the avenue the final time, but as the gap was just about bridged the group sat up & Pete kept plugging away and still had a good gap coming into the final kilometers.

Heading down Burumbeet Road before the left hand turn up Hendersons Road, Brad Fry took his chances and went  off the front,

Cartledge took the left hand corner in a big gear & was able to keep momentum in preparation for the final climb which soon put him past Fry then Keil, looking down at the speedo he was doing 53km/hr as he hit the bottom of the hill and was thinking he had better make a go of this

There was a strong charge from the rest of the field of which only the strong would survive, Scott Townsend put those sprinters legs to good use to power himself up the hill and take him to the line as undisputed club champion, Tony Mirabella was hot on his heels with a good scrap for third being taken out by Shane Cody, 4th place Rick Calvert and Cartledge managed to hang on for 5th.

 

First and 21012 Club Champion –Scott Townsend

Second-Tony Mirabella

Third- Shane Cody

Fourth-Rick Calvert

Fifth- Phil Cartledge

Morley Wins on Windmill Circuit

Bob Morley had to work hard to get past the powerful Kevin Lee in a tail wind sprint at Learmonth on Sunday.

A good field took advantage of perfect weather to fight out a 54 handicap on Sunday.

Ray Hodgson, still buoyant from his impressive win last week, was first away with a diminished advantage. Chasing him was big Nick Verhagen riding solo with a four minute chase.

There was power at the back end of the field with Tony Mirrabella, the mercurial Phil Cartledge and Shane Cody was back with the coveted number one pinned to his top.

They had a four minute chase to two of the strongest riders in the club. Darren Terry and Richard Taylor combined would blow a power metre apart. But to counter that, they have a B.R.I.Q (Bike Racing Intelligence Quotient) of about 3.5%

They roared off after Dave Peters and Peter Livitsanis and caught them on the first lap and they would be hoping to stay from scratch and catch the field in front. Peters and Livitsanis did what they could as the other two powerhouses roared ahead.

The eventual winning group only had three minute gap but the Brothers Lee and Bob Morley were working like a well oiled machine and were quickly taking time out of the bunch in front. It is hard to believe Kevin and Brian Lee are actually brothers. They are out of the same factory but are completely different in physique. Kevin Lee is called Popeye because of his muscular build but Brian is built more like Olive Oil.

When you combine the power of Kevin, the hill climbing of Brian and the guile of Bob Morley you have a bunch that was to be reckoned with.

They caught Rob Ferguson, Ron Larkin, Alan Barnett, and Mal Rock on the second lap and lifted the pace on the climb over the back to see who was interested. Fergy and Mal Rock were not, but Larkin and Barnett tenaciously hung on.

They worked together to catch Graeme Parker, Greg Curnow, Jacinta Welch and Garry Blood. Once again the Lee boys thought it was getting a bit crowded and lifted the pace again on a hill and put the bunch back to the original three.

Half a lap to go and they still had not caught Hodgson and Verhagen who were riding better than they did last week. They caught them in the home straight and rode through them with Popeye on the front. Morley jumped on his wheel and the pace levelled out a bit when Verhagen was having a go down the outside. That ignited Kevin Lee into action and he lifted the pace in the tail wind whilst keeping something in store if there was a challenge. The challenge didn’t come until the last 70 metres when Morley jumped out and committed. They went for it side by side and Bob Morley gained victory by a small margin.

Brian Lee was third and Nick Verhagen and Ray Hodgson were fourth and fifth respectively.

The back end of the field had rounded up second and third scratch and Dave Peters was suffering because he had left his form on the previous days training ride.

Pete Livi hung on for a while longer, but shot out the back but continuing his comeback from injury. The second scratch Powerhouses Terry and Taylor jumped in and helped out. But in the tail wind sprint Shane Cody showed he was back with a sprint starting at 60 kms per hour. He went over the line well clear to take out fastest time

1-Bob Morley 2-Kevin Lee 3-Brian Lee 4-Nick Verhagen 5- Ray Hodgson

Fastest time- Shane Cody

Phil Cartledge-First and fastest –Again!!

The rise and rise of Phil Cartledge continues. Last race he chased Ken Heres and Darren Terry and he rode them down. Well try chasing hard man Rob Phillips and Rick Calvert for size. No worries. Head down and chewing the head stem, away he went and caught them in a great display of gutsy chasing and time trialling.

Although many people were scared off by the weather reports, the race was a classic again with the handicapping bring a result from all parts of the field.

Ray Hodgson was first away with big Nick Verhagen giving chase with a minute to close. Verhagen caught him in the first lap and rode with him for a while and then struck out on his own.

Ronny Larkin was paid a compliment by the handicapper by being pitted with Brian Lee and they had to chase his normal bunch which included Graeme Parker Gary Blood and the inimitable Malcolm Rock.

The handicapper’s judgment was well placed because Larkin and Lee rode with power and precision and caught the bunch in front. The combined outfit worked well together and set off after Verhagen who was still a speck in the distance.

Cartledge, Phillips and Calvert were storming along without sighting the leader and just picking up and shredding dropped riders.They picked up Pete Livistanis and strong man Darren Terry and it was the impetus the group needed. Pete Livi did what he could and blew up. Darren Terry made a solid contribution and was shelled on the quarry hill on the last lap.

Verhagen had led the race for two laps and he was caught by the Larkin and Lee led bunch. This group included Graeme Parker and the pesky Malcolm Rock, who was chirping in the bunch, trying to put the exhausted Larkin off  his game. Larkin barely had enough strength to tell him what he thought.

 

After a call of “9 minutes” to the lead bunch on the last lap the chasing bunch could be excused if they shelved any attempt for victory and sit up for fastest time. But in a bunch of goers like that, giving up was never an option and they continued on their storming ride. The lead bunch came back to them quickly as the race lengthened and the wind speed picked up.

They picked up the leaders as they turned into Donavan’s road for the hard slog home.

Phillips and Cartledge lifted on the hill and it was only Malcolm Rock that could hold their wheel!!!

Calvert , Larkin, Lee and Parker were all casualties and struggled home to fill the minor placings.

Cartledge and Phiilips rode away from Rock to fight out the finish. Phil Cartledge took the chequered flag in another remarkable performance. Phillips, a great ride for second.

Third place and perhaps the ride of the day was Malcolm Rock.

Rick Calvert was fourth and Brian Lee well ahead of the languishing field for fifth.

 

1st & Fastest-Phil Cartledge 2-Rob Phillips 3-Malcolm Rock 4-Rick Calvert 5-Brian Lee

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