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Results and Reports from Australia
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Carnegie Caulfield CC
Glenvale Crescent, Mulgrave, March 30, 2003
By Mal Sawford
No sign of an end to summer with a fine day marking the return to non daylight savings time. In a first for cyclists, no one arrived an hour early for their race, or at least if they did they hid it well!
A strong A Grade field rolled out, and in another break from tradition, there was no one prepared to attack off the start line, and the opening couple of laps were ridden at a remarkably easy pace. Jonny Clarke (SBR) was the first to stretch his legs, prompting a counter attack from Dean Johnstone (O'Mara Cycles) and Andrew Ward (melbournebicycle.com.au). Ten minutes in the pair quickly opened a decent advantage, with Clarke seemingly the only rider concerned and quick to cross to the leaders.
Richard Knight and Danny Kah were next to bridge, but were unable to hold the pace set by a rampaging Johnstone for long. At the 15 minute mark race favourite Robert Tighello (ACR) blasted across into the head wind, with Warragul's Joel Pearson not far behind. The front group now numbered five, with all riders rolling strong turns of pace.
The lead was out to 30 seconds at the 25 minute mark before a belated reaction came from the bunch, when SBR team mates Chris Carr and David Sturt launched off the front of the bunch in pursuit. Joined by Warren Knevitt (O'Mara), Ray Turner (Diamond Back) and Alex James (Fitzroy Cycles), the race turned into a pursuit match between the two groups of five. Carr was doing most of the driving for the chasers, and without much help reduced the lead to 20 seconds, before the leaders started to pull clear again.
The bunch steadily lost ground, and were lapped after 50 minutes and pulled from the course. At two to go, Tigs put in a monster attack which Johnstone tried to follow, however the former Australian Champion was too strong, riding clear to take the win by 7 seconds. The other members of the break fought out third, with Pearson sprinting clear ahead of Clarke and Ward 30 seconds down, while the final prize went to Sturt, who lead the chasers home a little over a minute behind the winner.
The big B Grade field saw a very attacking race unfold. John Hollinworth started the early move with Boon Chia, Ken Ford and Luke Doherty, with the break spending the opening ten minutes away. Lee Robinson almost missed the start, but once in the race was quick to attack, opening a 10 second lead with the newly promoted James Shepherdson. Another rider on the comeback trail, Russell Newnham, joined the leaders, but as a known breakaway threat his move saw the bunch respond and the field regroup.
Martin Bole returned to racing after a nasty training crash, and attacked 25 minutes in. He was briefly brought back before jumping away again with Ford, Dennis Toce and Paul Kelly (SBR). With Bole charging, the lead quickly grew to 20 seconds, despite the rare appearance of exercise physiology guru Rob Aughey (SBR) at the front of the bunch. Ford was unable to hold the pace, but with 10 minutes to go, the three leaders were a comfortable 30 seconds clear and the race was effectively over.
At the finish, Kelly and Toce had no answer to a strong surge from Bole, who will return to A Grade much quicker than he gave himself credit for. In a tight sprint for fourth, Newnham was too quick for Chris Salisbury, while Kirsty Bortolin (The Freedom Machine) claimed the Women's section.
C Grade saw the day's only bunch finish, despite a late effort from Cameron Rotter to break things up. Marcel Musco was a convincing sprint winner, ahead of St Kilda's Trevor Smith, Richard Cormick and Mark Kotzen. The rapidly improving Emily Phillips was prominent all day, and was rewarded by taking out the Women's division with a good sprint.
Brett McNally earned promotion to C Grade after a riding away from the D Grade field early on. After 30 minutes he was clear by the length of the straight, and only a determined chase by the next three strongest riders saw them latch on with 15 minutes remaining. Ben Day, Mick Kilkenny and Bill Kee all showed enough form to join McNally in C Grade next time round, but had no answer to his sprint at the finish, crossing the line in that order. Under 17 star Tess Downing backed up well from a late night at the Sid Patterson Grand Prix to take out the Women's division ahead of Melissa Nicholls.
Next Sunday, racing is at down the road at Dunlop Road, Mulgrave, hosted by the Blackburn Cycling Club. Carnegie Caulfield Criteriums continue every other Sunday (other than Easter) at Glenvale Crescent until the end of April. All holders of 2003 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. For first time competitors, Tokyo Olympian Mick Hollingworth conducts racing clinics in E Grade.
Images by Mal Sawford
A Grade, 1 hour + 3 laps - 36 starters 1 Robert Tighello (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Dean Johnstone (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Joel Pearson (Warragul CC) 4 Jonny Clarke (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 5 Andrew Ward (Coburg CC) 6 David Sturt (Carnegie Caulfield CC) B Grade, 1 hour + 3 laps - 43 starters 1 Martin Bole (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Paul Kelly (St Kilda CC) 3 Dennis Toce (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 4 Russell Newnham (Carnegie Caulfield CC) Women 1 Kirsty Bortolin (Blackburn CC) C Grade, 50 minutes + 3 laps - 23 starters 1 Marcel Musco (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Trevor Smith (St Kilda CC) 3 Richard Cormick (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 4 Mark Kotzen (Carnegie Caulfield CC Women 1 Emily Phillips (Blackburn CC) D Grade, 50 minutes + 3 laps - 16 starters 1 Brett McNally (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Ben Day (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Michael Kilkenny (Chelsea & Peninsula CC) 4 Bill Kee (St Kilda CC) Women 1 Tess Downing (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Melissa Nicholls (Carnegie Caulfield CC) E Grade, 45 minutes + 3 laps 1 Jason Rushen (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Dale Reith (Blackburn CC) 3 Kris Cook-Meredith (Carnegie Caulfield CC)