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Illawarra CC Twilight Criterium
February 23, 2006
Hennessy too good
The second round of the Haywards Bay criterium series was held at 5:30pm last Thursday night. The venue is picturesque and the race conditions were near perfect. There were thirty five riders over the three grades in attendance, all of them hoping to share in the substantial prize money donated by Winten Property Group.
Alan Kerr looked like he had been shot out of a cannon at the start of the C grade race. Within three laps he had a half lap lead, the only question was could he maintain the pace, the answer was no! After some concerted chasing by Peter Evans, Jason Johnson and Anthony Kneipp the bunch was all back together again.
Although there were a few other attempts at getting away the bunch stayed together for the rest of the race. At the two lap to go signal Peter Vesel put in a huge effort and created a lead of over 100m on the bunch. The effort to get away took its toll and he was suffering down the back straight on the final lap just as Johnson started his move. As they entered the finishing straight Johnson cruised past Vesel for the win with Kerr and Kneipp filling the next two placings.
The C grade point score after race two is Johnson 26, Kerr 16, Evans 10, Vesel 10 and Hotchkis 10. Johnson goes up to B grade next week and will take 14 points with him. A good sized bunch of fifteen riders lined up for the B grade race. Aaron Hull was particularly aggressive in the early stages of the race as was Bill McClatchie and Keith Bennett. No one was able to make a substantial breakaway as all the riders were particularly attentive.
There was nowhere to hide in the bunch because nearly every rider had a dig on the front. As each move was countered it became obvious that the result was going to come down to a bunch sprint. Hull started the move on the final lap in the back straight but Drew Robertson was quickly on his wheel. As they lined up for the drag race to the finish line Robertson powered to the front, McClatchie moved through the bunch with Tony Pulo glued to his wheel. It was a blanket finish as they went over the line, the final result by the closest of margins was Robertson, McClatchie, Pulo and Hull.
B grade point score after race two is Robertson 22, Pulo 14, Aisbett 13, Battaerd 11 and McLatchie 11.
The speed of the A grade race was certainly spell binding. Seth Collins threw down the gauntlet by attacking from the start. The reaction from the bunch was immediate and on lap two he was back in the bunch. Danny Hennessy tested the waters by putting in a sharp effort but he was quickly marked.
Robert Williams obviously has read the racer's handbook and as soon as Hennessy was caught he launched the counter attack. The speed that he created the gap of about 150m was awesome, the fact that he was able to maintain the gap despite the efforts of the chasers lap after lap was impressive.
It was a tall order for him to stay away till the finish and in the final stages of the race Hennessy bridged across to him, he was quickly followed by Collins. It looked like they would not get caught but a big effort from Ben DuBois, Ben Yates and Tim Morris brought it all back together for the last few laps.
Hennessy attacked again with Collins and Williams in his wake. The final result was Hennessy, Williams, Collins and DuBois. The most aggressive rider of the day was shared by Hennessy and Williams.
A grade point score after race two is Hennessy 18, Morris 16, Collins 16 and Josh Wall 13. As last week's race was cancelled due to the weather there will be prize money on next week's race donated by Winten Property Group, the developers of Haywards Bay.
A Grade 1 Danny Hennessy (Sth Highlands) 24.00 2 Robbie Williams (North Sydney) 3 Seth Collins (Sutherland Shire) 4 Ben du Bois (Illawarra) 5 Tim Morris (Illawarra) 6 Ben Yates (Illawarra) DNF Andy Blair (Illawarra) DNF Peter Jones (Sutherland Shire) B Grade 1 Drew Robertson (Illawarra) 18.00 2 William (Bill) McClatchie (Illawarra) 3 Tony Pulo (Illawarra) 4 Arron Hull (Illawarra) 5 Keith Bennett (Illawarra) 6 Aaron Terechovs (Illawarra) 7 Neil Midgley (Illawarra) 8 Frank Tortorici (Illawarra) 9 Roger Ocvirk (Illawarra) 10 Jose Pereira (Illawarra) 11 Alan Vucko (Illawarra) 12 Daniel Silveri (Illawarra) 13 Joe Chiaverini (Illawarra) 14 Ian Robinson (Illawarra) C Grade 1 Jason Johnson (Illawarra) 12.00 2 Peter Vesel (Illawarra) 3 Alan Kerr (Illawarra) 4 Anthony Kneipp (Illawarra) 5 Adam Hotchkis (Illawarra) 6 Peter Kelly (Illawarra) 7 Paul du Bois (Sutherland Shire) 8 Carlo Paiola (Illawarra) 9 Peter Evans (Illawarra) 10 Darren Gordon (Illawarra) 11 Megan Wilkie (Illawarra) 12 Vincent O`Dwyer (Illawarra) DNF Sarah Whipp (Illawarra)