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Carnegie Caulfield Cycling Club

Phillip Island, Victoria, July 3, 2005

By Mal Sawford

And they’re off
Photo ©: Mal Sawford
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CCCC made its long awaited debut at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, with the venue proving, as expected, ideal for non-motorised bike racing. The five kilometre circuit is perched on the side of a hill overlooking Bass Strait, and is renowned for the strong winds that sweep across it. The weather gods were kind, with a steady breeze blowing down the main straight, and no sign of rain.
Many riders made the trek from Melbourne for a chance to test their legs, and the race was also well supported by the local Leongatha, Latrobe, Warragul and Bairnsdale clubs, with 150 riders in total for the afternoon. Although the circuit features the famous climb up to Lukey Heights, which steepens approaching the summit, with the wind from the north, it was the twisting section around the Southern Loop and Bass Strait through to Honda Corner and Siberia that would prove most difficult, exposing riders to strong cross winds.

Shortly after the A Grade bunch set off from under the TAC - Share the Road inflatable kite for their eighteen laps, veteran strongman David Sturt (Pro-Motion/Giant Bicycles), who revels in tough conditions, jumped away, joined by O'Mara Cycles team mates Justin Davis and Scott Brown. Davis couldn't stay with the pace long but Brown hung tough with the rampaging Sturt. It took the best part of five laps for the bunch to almost get on terms with the two leaders - before eight riders including Tommy Nankervis and Brendan Rowbotham (Fitzroy Cycles) and Junior World Pursuit Champion Michael Ford jumped across the gap before the bunch could reform.
Sturt clearly wasn't happy with the mix, however, and attacked again with another of the O'Mara riders in Mark Howard. Once again, the pair powered away, opening a maximum advantage of 45 seconds with eight laps to race, before the chase finally began to close the gap. Sturt's long day out finally came to an end six laps from home, but after a short rest he made one last effort with Davis.

Pat Shaw leads Darren Lapthorne
Photo ©: Mal Sawford
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Nankervis and Nathan Wise (Richmond Cyclery) slipped the chase group on the climb to join the leaders, but their dangerous move prompted a quick reaction and the bunch regrouped for the final time. The winning break was launched at two to go, with Nankervis following a move from Pat Shaw (VIS) and Darren Lapthorne (Lloyd Morgan), to form a trio that had plenty of allies in the bunch to disrupt any chase.
The leaders finished well clear, with Nankervis taking the front position for the downhill and tailwind sprint. Clearly, he thought Shaw was the one to watch, looking over his left shoulder for the youngster to make his move - and was nearly caught out when Lapthorne kicked hard on his right. Monstering a big gear, Nankervis just got back on terms with his unexpected rival, and the two hit the line shoulder to shoulder, but Nankervis forced his wheel over the line just in front to take the win.

Vaughan Bowman (Le Tour Cycles) attacked the bunch on the final corner to pinch fourth place, while Ford kept the bunch on his hip for the length of the straight to lead the main field home.
The huge B Grade bunch saw a number of early aggressors, with Matt Jensen (Kathy Watt's Personal Training) and Tim Campbell prominent. There were plenty of willing chasers, however, and the early moves were generally quickly neutralised.
With another big turn out, the Anaconda squad were keen to do well after coming away virtually empty handed a fortnight earlier at the Holden Proving Grounds. Anthony Smith tried his hand at half distance, marked by Richard Cormick, representing the next biggest team; Burnley Finance/Aqua-Pure.

Matt Jensen was aggressive early
Photo ©: Mal Sawford
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At seven to go, Smith had ridden Cormick off his wheel, but had Josh Morrison in pursuit for the Burnley boys. Chasing Morrison was Ken Ford (Gran Prix) and Peter Howard, but once Morrison had reached Smith the two leaders quickly pulled away. Approaching the final two laps, Morrison went solo, and with an impressive effort kept the bunch at bay for a good win.
Big Richard Read salvaged things for Anaconda with a powerful sprint to lead the bunch home ahead of team mate Cameron Hunter and Ewin Williams. Read's effort came after he was caught up in the only fall of the day just before the start of the final two laps, but after his free lap out he was able to make his way through the bunch with surprising ease.

Chris Beales (Cycle Science) looked to have slipped under the Handicapper's guard after he raced away from the C Grade bunch with Warragul club mate Luke Hanley and Nigel Kimbar (O'Mara) on the opening lap. Beales quickly decided he was faster on his own, and with little apparent effort rode further and further away from the bunch.
Ten laps later, and staring down the barrel of a promotion straight to A Grade, Beales finally ran out of steam and was quickly reeled in. Despite a number of surges, the bunch stayed intact to the finish, with the sprint well taken out by Warragul youngster James Henry, from Geoff Pyman and Adam Pyke.

Nathan Wise
Photo ©: Mal Sawford
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Monique Hanley showed the benefits of regular Thursday night winter endurance track racing at Melbourne's new indoor velodrome with a good sprint to take the Women's division, ahead of Tarna Schmidt and Michelle Murrell.
The D Grade race over 12 laps proved a race of attrition; with riders losing contact on the Lukey Heights climb every lap. Only four riders survived in the lead group to hear the bell; and Evan Rotton proved too strong for the visiting veteran trio of Stephan Jansen, Robert de Bernardi and Philip Hanley. Luke Petrie took out the E Grade event from Gayle Burke.
Blackburns juniors dominated the junior omnium, taking out the first three places. Dale Reith came away with wins in both the 1 Lap Time Trial and the 10km Handicap, after wearing down Peter Vlahos in a long sprint to the line. Aaron Eynaud kept Reith from a clean sweep with a great sprint to hold off his older rival in the Scratch race, but there was no denying Reith the overall win on the day.

D Grade lost riders
Photo ©: Mal Sawford
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Race day officials Gemma Goyne and Leigh De Luca helped Chief Judge Doug Moody on the finish line and also kept track of the lap count - no mean feat with six bunches splintering on the testing circuit! Dennis Bowen-Day, Ron Kent, Phil Johns and Ryan Kelly had the best seats in the house as lead car drivers, with entry table duties shouldered by Tammy and Katie Sawford. Thanks also to Luke James and Scott Orchard for erecting the TAC finish line kite and helping sign the long queue of riders and spectators into the circuit; and finally to Chris White, Tim Greeks and Karina Kennedy at PI Operations for their assistance in making the fantastic event possible.

Next week's racing for the Southern Region is a Crit at the Metec Driving training circuit next Sunday morning hosted by Blackburn, before a return to the open road for Chelsea's popular Crib Point circuit on the 16th. CCCC's next event is the annual Jack McGowan Handicap over the flat Modella course on July 30.
All holders of 2005 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 day license for $20. For further details, including the full regional race calendar, go to


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Mal Sawford


A Grade - 90km
1 Tommy Nankervis (Carnegie Caulfield)    
2 Darren Lapthorne (Coburg)               
3 Patrick Shaw (Ballarat/Sebastapol)      
4 Vaughan Bowman (Blackburn)              
5 Michael Ford (Carnegie Caulfield)       
6 Nathan Wise (Carnegie Caulfield)        
B Grade - 80km
1 Josh Morrison (Carnegie Caulfield)      
2 Richard Read (Blackburn)                
3 Cameron Hunter (Blackburn)              
4 Ewin Williams (Brunswick)               
5 Ken Ford (Carnegie Caulfield)           
C Grade - 70km
1 James Henry (Warragul)                  
2 Geoff Pyman (Hawthorn)                  
3 Adam Pyke (Mornington)                  
4 Nigel Kimbar (Carnegie Caulfield)       
5 Michael Burke (Preston)                 
1 Monique Hanley (Warragul)               
2 Tarna Schmidt (Carnegie Caulfield)      
3 Michelle Murrell (Mornington)           
D Grade - 60km
1 Evan Rotton (Carnegie Caulfield)        
2 Stephan Jansen (Leongatha)              
3 Robert de Bernardi (Preston)            
4 Philip Hanley (Leongatha)               
E Grade - 50km
1 Luke Petrie (Blackburn)                 
2 Gayle Burke (Preston)                   
Junior Omnium
1 Dale Reith (Blackburn)                  
2 Aaron Eynaud (Blackburn)                
3 Peter Vlahos (Blackburn)                
4 Rowan Feely (Leongatha)                 

Local results 2004