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Carnegie Caulfield Criterium

Springvale Necropolis, January 14, 2003

By Mal Sawford

Rush hour
Photo: © Mal Sawford
Click for larger image

Experienced riders dominated the results of the latest twilight races held at the Necropolis. Riders from the Masters divisions took out breakaway wins in the top three grades, with only the win by a 13 year in D Grade spoiling the Veteran Express!

With many of the regular A Grade riders resting ahead of this weeks Australian Road Championships it was the perfect opportunity for someone new to step up and stand out. The opening laps were run a good pace as riders like Justin Davis (O'Mara) and Dean Johnstone put the hurt on riders at the back of the bunch. As the race went on, all of the attacks were quickly reeled in, and a bunch finish looked likely.

Rush hour
Photo: © Mal Sawford
Click for larger image

Sunday's winner, Russell Newnham had other ideas and took off with 5 minutes remaining, with Bendigo's John Dam quick to respond. When former Sun Tour regular David Sturt (SBR-Colnago) jumped across the gap the trio opened the gap further and at the call of 3 to go on the 2.5km Memorial Gardens circuit, the riders were 20 seconds clear.

A late surge from Shane Mills at reduced the margin slightly, but it was too late and the breakaway took the top placings with the win going to delighted Sturt, ahead of Dam and Newnham. The bunch was lead home by track star Warren Knevitt (O'Mara) with Matt Jackson (ACR) and Bronze Medalist from the Australian Youth Olympic Festival Simon Clarke (BikeNOW) just missing out.

A late attack also paid off in B Grade; after an attacking race from Geoff Whiter, Tyrin Simpson and Paul Natoli, the pace eased in the closing stages with Grant Matthews controlling things on the front of the bunch. Bruce Will and Nick Caple jumped away with 2 laps to go and held a narrow lead at the bell, but despite the best efforts of the newly wed Bricky, Will held on to take a good sprint win over his breakaway companion. Grant Jamieson lead the bunch home ahead of Rob Tidey (O'Mara) in his best result at this level.

Half way into the C Grade race around the Avenue of Roses, Danny Weatherley took the winning break clear, and could be clearly heard coaching his companions David Taylor and Matt Johnson into maintaining the right rhythm! Kym Marshall and Craig Rothenbuecher made strong but unsuccessful efforts to join the leaders, while the bunch seemed to have lost interest, and the lead stabilized at 25 seconds going into the final 3 laps. Despite his best efforts, Weatherly lost the wheel of race winner Taylor on the climb up the back straight and had to settle for second, while Brett Rossiter salvaged the final podium spot with a strong sprint to lead the bunch in.

Rush hour
Photo: © Mal Sawford
Click for larger image

Successful breakaways are almost unheard of in D Grade, with the Juniors always eager to chase anything! Tonight was no exception, and after staying at the pointy end of the race for the full distance, young Peter Johnstone (O'Mara) took out the bunch sprint ahead of Michael Boyce, Geoff Rushen and Mick Kilkenny. Nikki Matthews was clearly the strongest of the female competitors and was rewarded with the win in the Women;s division.

Racing continues every Tuesday night on the circuit, with the Police Road gate (Melways Map 80 G6) opens at 6pm for race starts for all grades at 6.30. Criteriums are also held on Sunday mornings at Glenvale Crescent (Melways Map 80 B2) with a 9am start time. All holders of current Cycling Australia licenses are welcome (don't forget to bring your license or receipt!) and non-members can have a go by taking out a three-race license for $39, deductible from your full membership if you decide to continue racing. Our thanks go to the Trustees of the Necropolis for making the fabulous facility available to Melbourne's racing community.


Images by Mal Sawford


A Grade - 1 hour + 3 laps
1 David Sturt (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
2 John Dam (Bendigo CC)
3 Russell Newnham (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
4 Warren Knevitt (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
5 Matt Jackson (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
6 Simon Clarke (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
20 starters
B Grade - 1 hour + 3 laps
1 Bruce Will (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
2 Nick Caple (St Kilda CC)
3 Grant Jamieson (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
4 Rob Tidey (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
28 Starters
C Grade - 50 mins + 3 laps
1 David Taylor (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
2 Danny Weatherley (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
3 Matt Johnson (St Kilda CC)
4 Danny Wetherley (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
41 starters
D Grade - 45 mins + 3 laps
1 Peter Johnstone (Chelsea & Peninsula CC)
2 Michael Boyce (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
3 Geoff Rushen (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
4 Matt Kilkenny (Chelsea & Peninsula CC)
1 Nikki Matthews (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
27 starters
E Grade - 40 mins + 3 laps
1 Tony Birkett (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
2 Gerry Egbers (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
3 Matt Flaherty (Carnegie Caulfield CC)
4 Dale Reith (Blackburn CC)
10 starters

Australian results from the past week

Coburg CC Crit
Carnegie Caulfield Crit
Eastern Suburbs CC Summer Series #1
Norwood CC Summer Series Crit
VLCC Scratch Race
Carnegie Caulfield CC
St Kilda CC Criterium
Illawarra CC Scratch Race
Randwick Botany CC Criterium


Complete Australian results for 2003