EVERESTing Challenge – Mission accomplished

EVERESTing Challenge – Mission accomplished

CONGRATULATIONS – Ricky Calvert!!!


 Rick's Challenge completed

EUREKA Cycling club member – Rick Calvert – successfully completed his EVERESTing attempt at 7:40 PM on Wednesday 3rd April 2019.


Like all smart adventurers, Rick had kept a close watch on the weather forecasts.  Subsequently, he moved his challenge forward one day and was rewarded with near perfect weather throughout.

Rick set off just before 3 AM and rode the first 13 laps solo, before the first of many local Ballarat riders joined him.  In fact, Rick would not ride another lap on his own!
Cycling mates from his cafe group – Thinking Man’s Bunch – were prominent throughout the day, as well as many EUREKA Cycling members and Ballarat Sebastopol CC members.
Together, they solved the problems of the world, whilst keeping to Rick’s 6:00 minute to 6:20 minute schedule for each repeat.


Initially Rick planned to complete just the 137 repeats required to reach the 8848 metre elevation gain target, however, as cyclists do, he adjusted his target not once, but twice!

The day was all about Rick’s attempt at the challenge, yet the arrival of spectators and other cyclists is testament to Rick’s popularity in the peloton.  There were many spectators throughout the day.  Some were not the cycling type, some were just smart and donated to Rick’s cause rather than attempt anything like climbing that well known hill.
They came, they watched, they took photos.

IMG_4563  IMG_4562

Numbers swelled in the late afternoon as word spread via social media that Rick was on target to achieve the feat.
Beers were chilled and pizzas were ordered in anticipation of a post challenge feast.

Then finally, some sixteen hours and forty minutes after starting his quest.  After completing an amazing 140 repeats of Longs Hill Road and spending an equally amazing 14 hours and 45 minutes in the saddle, Rick pulled to the kerb for the final time to the rapturous cheers of the crowd.
The weeks of training and planning had come to fruition.

IMG_4561 (1)

On this day, Rick Calvert joined a select few in Ballarat who had achieved the “Everest” feat.
There were back slaps and handshakes all round.  Tears flowed – especially from those who had promised to ride one lap…and had to come good on their promise!

Many nods of accomplishment were had, for what had originally started out as a personal test for Rick, had then developed into a bet and finally evolved into a fundraiser for the Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute.

Congratulations Rick!

This was a wonderful show of the cycling community coming together to support you.  We were all proud to play a small part in your day!

March 31, 2019 – Weatherboard – handicap, 60 Km

March 31, 2019 – Weatherboard – handicap, 60 Km

Dodgy Weather – 31 March 2019

Weatherboard handicap

Weatherboard circuit – 60 km

unity image


“We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”
– J.K. Rowling

What appeared to be a bleak and horrid day, was actually not too bad.  Whilst light rain showers and a west southwest wind would be prevalent throughout the day, the wind chill factor was almost non existent, hence, conditions were rubbish, yet not horrible.

Eighteen keen cyclists signed on for the fray, knowing that the hit-out was all important for the Eureka Open the following Sunday.
The Club Champion – Craig Lee – was Handicapper on this day, he fielded unlimited excuses, complaints and general whinges before deciding upon the the final handicap.

The limit group comprised John Creek, Rob Young, Darryl Brown and Rob Kinna.  They set off at 24 minutes, with an eight minute gap to the next group on the road.
The 16 minute group saw Roger McMillan, Danny Whelan and James Gretton combined, for a short time at least.
Next away was the 7 minute group of Peter Canny, Jim Crumpler, Dean Wells (yes, we thought this was a typo as well) and new club member Mark Verberne.  On paper, this seemed like the winning bunch…
The 4 minute group hailed reigning Eureka Open winner – Rob Phillips – as well as Peter Gunston and Richard Taylor.  This bunch seemed destined for being collected by Scratch and forming a super group!
Scratch consisted of Greg Ley, Jason Hendry, Stuart Brien and Tony Mirabella.  Mirabella is on the comeback trail from an unfortunate ankle injury.  Wise heads would suggest an easier mark, yet Tony was having none of that!

Out on course and the bunches quickly realised their dreams to be smashed by the parcours and the wind.  No direction made for easy riding and the bunches started losing members in sync.  All except the 7 minute bunch who had found their rhythm and speed.
Scratch had lost Mirabella early, then caught the 4 minute bunch.  Brien, Hendry and Ley rotated as though the others didn’t exist.  Eventually the pace would prove too much for Phillips and Gunston, however Taylor held fast.

At the half way mark the 7 minute bunch started to encounter dropped riders from the groups ahead – none were able to hang on for a free ride.  Soon after they lost Crumpler, however he would later play a vital role for the bunch…

By this stage, Whelan was closing in on the lead – solo.  He had lost both Gretton and McMillan.  The leaders were in his sights.
Whelan against four others…it was almost unfair on the four…

Canny, Verberne and Wells ploughed on through the elements.  Their pace was even and deliberate.  They swept past the remaining Limit riders and quickly determined that Whelan was probably in the lead – solo.

Crumpler had played his final hand for his former 7 minute cohorts.  Swept up by the smoothly rotating Scratch bunch, Crumpler rotated through a few times at high speed.  The short disruption to their metronomic rotations eventually led to Brien losing contact with the Ley and Hendry.
*Note: Brien claimed a soft tyre…

The 7 minute group caught the lone leader – Whelan – who quickly locked onto the trio.  Just 18 kilometres remained in the race.  It was still a long way to the finish line…
The race outcome was down to just two groups.  Scratch versus the 7 minute group.  Whelan was the only rider remaining who could impact the outcome!

Final lap and the 7 minute bunch was full of confidence as they headed up Avenue Road.  They couldn’t see any chasers, however they still needed to drop Whelan.
Heading towards Weatherboard and Whelan rotated to the front and straight into the gutter.  The 7 minute men sat and bided their time.  They could afford to play their cards and they did, exploding past the gallant Whelan just before the run down to the chicane.
The race leaders were three – Canny, Verberne and Wells.

Wells led into the final corner and his rear wheel slipped on the wet tarmac.  Verberne suffered worse – he slipped and crashed!
Canny and Wells sat up for their comrade.  Verberne had already remounted and was waving the other two on.
Wells declared he wouldn’t take advantage of the move out to 7 minutes and Canny rode to the chequered flag unchallenged.  Verberne crossed in third place and one minute later the brilliant Whelan was fourth.
Another minute passed, then Ley and Hendry (also Taylor) crested the Hendersons Road hill and sprinted towards the finish line.  Hendry taking fifth and Fastest Time in a tight sprint.

1st – Peter Canny (7 mins)
2nd – Dean Wells (7 mins)
3rd – Mark Verberne (7 mins)
4th – Danny Whelan (16 mins)
5th – Jason Hendry (Scratch)
Fastest Time – Jason Hendry (Scratch) in 1h 38m ave. 37.5 Kph


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2019 Victoria Police & Emergency Services Games – Road Cycling

2019 Victoria Police & Emergency Services Games – Road Cycling

2019 Victoria Police & Emergency Services Games

EUREKA hosts cycling events

2019 Vic Pol Games - poster

On Tuesday 26th March, EUREKA Cycling hosted the cycling events for the 2019 VPESG at Learmonth.
Events were age based, with around forty riders contesting the Individual Time Trial, which was staged in the morning.  Another eighty odd riders contested the Road Races which were staged in the afternoon.

The generosity of Eureka members who volunteered their time and assets, was once again a highlight of yet another successfully hosted event.
Thank you to those members who were able to assist us on the day.

Also, thank you to Barry at LUCAS Bakers Delight for supplying many loaves of bread for the games.  Barry has been a supporter of EUREKA Cycling over the years and his products have helped make our events top notch!


EUREKA members also competed on the day…

Steve Biram and Shaun Martin raced in the same age group and both walked away with medals.
Biram won GOLD in the Time Trial and BRONZE in the Road Race.
Martin won the SILVER medal in both events. 


Chris Chatham won GOLD in his Time Trial and finished fifth in his Road Race.
Owen Tudball won BRONZE in his Road Race.
Jim Burzacott finished fifth in his Road Race.

Ballarat rider Bree Higgins earned a SILVER medal in her Time Trial.

Congratulations go to Simon Hall and John Hatfield who organised the cycling events for VPESG.
Both men were able to compete on the day.  Simon finished fifth in his Road Race and John won a SILVER medal in his Time Trial.



March 17, 2019 – Ercildoune / Addington Loop – 55 Km Handicap

March 17, 2019 – Ercildoune / Addington Loop – 55 Km Handicap

Irish Eyes Are Smiling – 17 March 2019

St. Patricks Day Handicap

Ercildoune – Addington Loop – 55 km



There are only two kinds of people in the world, The Irish and those who wish they were.
? Old Irish saying

It was Saint Patricks Day and whilst most of those with Irish heritage were thinking about getting an early start at Irish Murphy’s or the Munster’s Arms, some of the more crazy ones were lining up to ride bicycles.  They prepared to tackle the infamous Mt Ercildoune circuit – with the Addington Loop up Harrisons Road thrown in for good measure.

Twenty eight brave starters, including many from good Irish stock!
The field was littered with Gaelic heritage…there was O’Callaghan, McMillan Linane, Dawson, Whelan and Livitsanis (what the Janey Mack – that’s not Irish!).

Today, lady luck would smile on the Irish, but we of the clovered isle were only too pleased to see names like Schiemer, Kiel, Verberne and Burzacott.
Seven groups started the race, spread out from 33 minutes for the out-markers to Scratch for the big guns.
Mal Rock and John Faulkner led the race out – neither would finish.

Robert Young and Graeme Parker were next away at 31 minutes.  They would have the race lead until the infamous Harrison’s Road climb.

John Creek and Jakkii Dawson were away at 21 minutes and rounded up by halfway.

Darryl Brown, Brian Lee, Roger McMillan and Rob Parker formed the 18 minute group, their fortunes would vary greatly.

Yours truly (the future hero of the day) was in the 15 minute bunch, and that’s really where we take up the story…
Three with Irish heritage: Linane, O’Callaghan and Whelan (the anglicized form of the ancient pre 10th century Gaelic name O’ Faolain, meaning a male descendant of Faolan, itself a personal name meaning ‘Young wolf’)…actually, ‘Old fox’ would be more appropriate, but I’ll get to that later.
Livitsanis with Greek heritage, and Burzacott with possible Cornish heritage. *He was seen eating lots of pastries after the race!

The 9 minute group saw the return of Cameron Farrington – the lone rider of English heritage, surrounded by yet more Irish lads – Shaun Martin, Grant Dawson and Geoff Martin.

Dennis Neale returned to the fold and rode from 6 minutes with Matt Angus and newcomer Mark Verbene.

Scratch welcomed Brendan Schiemer back.  Matt Bowman brought his brother Vaughan along to play.  Jason Birch, Peter Kiel and Rob Ellis rounded out an impressive bunch.  However this day was not to be theirs!
This day, Irish eyes would be smiling as the 15 minute group raced away…

Up and over Weatherboard and into Ercildoune Rd – the bunch was working together beautifully.  Burzacott (following Whelan) was heard to remark to Linane, ‘Wow, he pushes through pretty hard’.  ‘Yeah’, thought Linane, ‘that’s why I’m doing my turns after O’Callaghan, but I’m not letting you in on the secret!’
Unfortunately, Burzacott realised the error of his ways a little too late and was dropped once the bunch turned into Black Bottom Rd.

The remaining four kept sharing turns, but Livitsanis was having heritage flashbacks and raised the white flag once they turned into Beaufort-Waubra Road.  Only the three Irish laddies were left.
They drove past the 18 minute bunch, with a quick tag on from McMillan and Brown, before they both realised this was no place for pretenders.
O’Callaghan bravely hung on until about halfway up the seemingly never ending rolling hills of Beaufort-Waubra Road, but he too eventually surrendered (must be from Northern Island!).

It was down to the ‘Old Fox’ and the ‘Young Dog’… Linane and Whelan kept working together taking turns and when they rolled onto Edmonston Road they caught Mal Rock, who let them know that there were only two in front, Parker and Young.

To the foot of the Harrisons Rd climb and Whelan says to Linane ‘I’m going to need a bit of a hand getting up here’.
Linane, an ex-catholic schoolboy trained to respect his elders said ‘No worries, kind Sir, just sit on my left and I will block this nasty north wind for you’, which he preceded to do.

Three quarters of the way up Harrisons Rd and Whelan thought ‘sucker’ and took off, getting a nice break on Linane.  They both went past the front markers – Whelan cresting the climb in the lead and Linane finally clawing over the top some seconds later.
Much cursing was heard as Linane proceeded to chase down Whelan over the next 4 km.  

Linane caught Whelan as they turned back onto Beaufort-Waubra Road and thought ‘No more turns from me you old fox!’

Whelan screamed back down onto Edmonston Rd and proceeded to do what Whelan does best – try to drop anyone who’s trying to get a sit on him.  Linane hung on for dear life over the bumpy bits of Edmonston Rd, but once it smoothed out, started thinking of his victory speech…ah to be young and cocky…

Linane and Whelan kept working well together, with Linane deferring to his elder and letting Whelan have the lead, before deciding 100 metres out to be a complete mongrel and take the win.

Minutes later the Scratch riders raced through the finish line – with visitor Vaughan Bowman taking third place and Fastest Time ahead of Brendan Schiemer. 

Race results:
1st – Steve Linane (15 mins)
2nd – Danny Whelan (15 mins)
3rd – Vaughan Bowman (Scratch)
4th – Brendan Schiemer (Scratch)
5th – Matt Angus (6 mins)
Fastest Time – Vaughan Bowman (Scratch) in 1h 26m, ave. 38.4 Kph


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