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Hazelwood Pondage, Gippsland, Victoria, March 15, 2006

A mass start of A, B, C and Ladies grades was the format of the last scratch race of the Summer series at Hazelwood Pondage. The 24kms - 2 lap race was always going to be interesting to see who could and would go with the grades higher them the they normally compete in. Right from the gun Jim Timmer-Arends cranked up the pace with all but a few able to hang in with the 27 strong peleton as the speed reached in excess of 50kms/p/h before reaching the turn into Nadenbousch's Road where several more dropped off the peleton. By the time the peleton had reached the end of Nadenbousch's Road all the C grade and lady riders were out the back leaving only the A & B grade groups in the peloton.

On the descent down past the cemetery Danny Gafa having his first race in A grade after being promoted from B grade, came to grief after clipping a wheel and falling heavily, damaging his bike. Meanwhile up front the attacks continued but each time was shut down by the big peleton. Further back in the race Dean Gray and Lynton Sedley held a good gap on a couple of C grade riders and the lone leader of the ladies race, Shannon McCurley along with Bill Pace 9B grade) who was assisting the group in an effort to catch the two leading C graders. However with young Ashley Lucas jumping up the road on several occasions braking the rhythm of the chasing bunch, allow the leading C graders to stay way. At the head of race the main peleton was moving quickly as the attacks continued, but no one was able to get away.

Most of the B grade riders stayed with peloton right to the wire.

The first home were A grade riders, Charles Howlett followed Geoff Thompson (Wgl) then Jamie Johnson 3rd. Roland Elsdon was the first B grade rider home followed by Rod Ashworth and Ben Verhagan 3rd. Dean Gray cracked his first club win in C grade ahead of Lynton Sedley with Ashley Lucas 3rd. The Ladies race was dominated again by youngster Shannon McCurley winning comfortably from Sue Elsdon and Tania Baulch 3rd.

Results, 24kms Mass Start

A Grade
1 Charles Howlett
2 Geoff Thompson (Wgl)
3 Jamie Johnson
B Grade
1 Roland Elsdon
2 Rod Ashworth
3 Ben Verhagan
C Grade
1 Dean Gray
2 Lynton Sedley
3 Ashley Lucas
1 Shannon McCurley
2 Sue Elsdon
3 Tania Baulch

Local results 2006