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Joseph Sunde Memorial Criteriums
Heffron Park, Maroubra, Australia, January 26, 2004
Big Troy Glennan bags the big one
By John Sunde
Up and coming NSW rider from the St George/FRF Couriers team, big Troy Glennan soloed away from an 8 rider break to claim an memorable win in the Joseph Sunde Memorial Criterium at Heffron Park today.
The 2004 edition was the 11th anniversary of this popular event, which is conducted on the Australia Day holiday weekend by Eastern Suburbs cycling club and is dedicated to the memory of Joseph Sunde, who passed away in 1993 after an 18 month battle with leukaemia (see about Joseph).
The elite field of 60 riders once again boasted the cream of NSW cycling talent with the State's seven top finishers in last weekend's Australian Road Championships lining up for the event including time trial silver medallist Peter Milostic and road silver medallist Robert McLachlan from the ACT. The mountain bike community was well represented with Paul Rowney, Peter Hatton and Perren Delacour, who was 4th in the Oceania XC Championships yesterday in Rotorua, NZ and flew back to Sydney this morning and was in a cab straight to the race from the airport. Also backing up were the top five teams in last night's Madison title at the St George Track Carnival, including winner Steve Fitzpatrick and World Teams Pursuit Champion Steve Wooldridge. Contributing to the international flavour of the event were Uruguayan visitors Hector Morales and Jorge Libonatti, Dutchman Bertil Klootwijl, English time trialist Stuart Dangerfield and Belgian based Aussie, Danny Massouras.
The 50 minutes plus three laps race was run in hot, sunny conditions with a blustery southerly wind buffeting the field as it entered the 400m home straight. Unfortunately the elite event was delayed for 45 minutes, after the earlier group handicap event had to be rerun when Easts rider Chris Young crashed heavily and suffered a fractured leg on the 2nd lap of the race. He is now recovering in Prince of Wales Hospital after a successful operation.
Once the race got underway though, it was off to a cracking start as the entire field was strung out the length of the straight after the very first lap. Elite races at Heffron Park usually see the field stay intact for at least the first five laps, but today some riders were finding the pace and windy conditions just too much after only two laps.
Twenty minutes into the race and with almost a third of the original sixty starters now spectators, Troy Glennan attacked off the front into the headwind taking a group of five riders with him, his breakaway companion from the Nationals Klayten Smith, Jose Rodriguez, Jorge Libonatti, Bertil Klootwijl and Rod McGee. Initially, the break only had a slender lead as the bunch was still intent on closing the gap, but two laps later when Selle Italia pro Trent Wilson and Peter Hatton made it across, the break was a good as gone.
Slowly but surely over the next critical few laps, the eight man break started to power away and despite some strong turns from Robert McLachlan, the sting went out of the bunch chase with about ten minutes of normal race time remaining. With the bunch now resigned to an eighth place sprint, Dominic Caravello generously provided a $50 sprint prime which Nash Kent won at the 50 minute mark which briefly livened things up for the chase group.
By this stage of the race though all the action was up the road in the break. Not content to wait around for a sprint against the likes of McGee, Rodriguez & co, Big Troy decided grab the initiative and light it up on his own using his enormous power and strength into the headwind to simply ride away from the break with three laps to go.
A very brave and gutsy move in the conditions because he was either going to get swamped by a late move from the break or hold off for a memorable win. Not only did he manage to hold them off, he even increased his 20 second gap by 5 seconds on the bell lap.
With a huge grin and nothing but daylight behind him, Troy Glennan crossed the line with his hands in the air to become the 11th winner of the Joseph Sunde Memorial Criterium on Australia Day 2004.
In the sprint for the podium places, Jorge Libonatti edged big Dutchman Bertil Klootwijl, followed by Rod McGee and Jose Rodriguez. David Harrigan won the bunch gallop for eighth place in front of Hector Morales.
John, Christine, Edward and Portia Sunde and the Eastern Suburbs Cycling Club would like to thank all those riders and spectators who attended the event and again donated generously to Childrens Cancer Institute of Australia. If you would like to make a donation online to the Institute, please visit their website at www.ccia.org.au
A big thank you to the sponsors who generously donated prizes for the 3 events: Albion Cycles, Casa Bonita, Velo Vita, Cycling Projects, Avril Swan and Velomax Wheels. And thanks also to the suppliers of the raffle prizes Trek Bikes Australia, Wildfire Restaurant, Croydon Industries, Bags and Luggage Direct, Ivan Lulic Pharmacy and Dolina Fashion Group, the proceeds of which raised over $1000 on the day for the Childrens Cancer Institute
Images by Bob Bykerk
1 Troy Glennan (St George) 2 Jorge Libonatti (Uruguay) 3 Bertil Klootwijl (Holland) 4 Rod McGee (Parramatta) 5 Jose Rodriguez (Easts) 6 Peter Hatton (Clarence St Cyclery) 7 Trent Wilson (Parramatta) 8 Klayten Smith (Clarence St Cyclery) 9 David Harrigan (Parramatta) 10 Hector Morales (Uruguay)