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Northern Districts Cycling Club
White Swan Criterium & 81st Northam to Perth
Perth, August 25-26, 2002
August 25 - Town Of Northam, White Swan Criterium
By Tony Douglas
An unseasonally warm day greeted the riders for the inaugural Town of Northam, White Swan Criterium, held in Northam Saturday August 25 2002.
Over 55 riders - juniors, hand cyclists, women, and men - lined up to tackle a tight "hot dog" course, with riders finding it tough as the temperatures continued to rise as the afternoon progressed.
The main event - the 45 minute White Swan Criterium - saw a fast pace set early with the 20-strong field breaking up midway into the race. A group of ten riders led the pack, with a six riders breaking away with 15 minutes remaining. On the final lap, with pressure building, Hilton McMurdo of the Glenn Parker Team made a strong attack off the front, which was immediately covered by Bicycle Entrepreneur rider Jason Rigg. With 250 metres to go Jason sprinted to the front and the rest of the pack were quick to respond. The final desperate sprint saw Eddie Hollands take a convincing win ahead of Mark Phillips who came from the back of the small bunch. Jason Rigg took out third place in a photo finish Hilton McMurdo in fourth place.
A small but high quality women's field saw Amber Malone win a hard-fought battle to take out first place over Rachel Wilson. Third place went to Jodie Craig in a close finish with Lindsay Davies-Moore.
In the support race Carlo Barendilla finished ahead of Cameron Meyer and Dean Gathercole in a very keenly contested event.
Other results, in a full afternoon of racing, saw in the Junior A, Ryan Francis just keep out Michael Fitzgerald with Cameron Meyer coming in 3rd. Cameron backed up later on to finish 2nd in the support criterium! Junior B saw Todd Francis come in first while the Junior C, in first place was Vanessa Horsley followed by Alex Parkinson.
Hand cyclists also raced the tight circuit with victory going to Mick Brown ahead of Peter Allen and Wayne Allsopp.
Congratulations to all the riders that made the trip up to Northam to take part in the first criterium event to be held on the streets of Northam that acted as the lead up to Sundays handicap race from Northam to Mundaring, on the outskirts of Perth.
Men 1 Eddie Hollands 2 Mark Phillips 3 Jason Rigg 4 Hilton McMurdo Women 1 Amber Malone 2 Rachel Wilson 3 Jodie Craig 4 Lindsay Davies-Moore Junior A 1 Ryan Francis 2 Michael Fitzgerald 3 Cameron Meyer Junior B 1 Todd Francis Junior C 1 Vanessa Horsley 2 Alex Parkinson
August 26 - The 81st Northam To Mundaring Handicap
By Tony Douglas
An incident-free day of racing on Saturday was an excellent introduction to 134 kilometre road race today from Northam, through York to Mundaring. Over 85 riders raced this classic handicap, which has been held almost every year since 1912. Graham Muston will be defending his win from 2001 starting off 20 minutes. The scratch bunch will need to work hard to catch the rest of the field with the limit group at 52 minutes.
The first riders are expected to cross the finishing line in Jacoby Road, Mundaring around 2.15pm, depending on conditions. All will be watching the course record as WA's top riders gather to contest this prestigious event. Local riders Hilton McMurdo, Jason Rigg, Wayne Van Morsel (who had the fastest time in 2001) will contest along with Leon Vogels and Rhys Sherborne who have both recently returned from competing in Belgium.
After a brief shower Saturday night in Northam the riders woke up to a fine day with a warming sun breaking through some light cloud.
The usual hectic registration on Sunday morning had all the front markers, at 52 minutes, ready to roll out of Northam a few minutes after the scheduled time of 10am with the following groups getting away on time. The chasing riders consisted of Scratch, 6, 10, 15, 20, 27, 34 and 42 minute groups.
There were 2 intermediate sprints along the way. The first at Grass Valley and then, almost halfway, at York. Both sprints were won by Murray Kent who was riding an inspired solo effort from the limit bunch. At York Murray had a 15 minute advantage on some of the riders from the 15, 20 and 27 minute chasing group. Meanwhile, the scratch group suffered a cruel blow when Hilton McMurdo punctured around the 30km mark. It would be another 8 minutes until the Scratch group that now consisted of the block group and some of the stronger out markers, hammered through York. Four kilometres out of York is Cut Hill. This mean stretch of road climbs sharply and saw the various groups string out. Jason Rigg was driving the scratch group up the climb and his pace saw Mark Phillips and Wayne Van Morsel (2001 fastest time) loose touch. Some hard riding by Ed Hollands and Jason Rigg over the rolling roads saw the gap closing to the lead bunch containing among others, Graeme Muston (last years winner), Murray Hall, Jon Pettingill, Ben Miles and Michael Darlington.
With less than 15 km to go at The Lakes turnoff onto the Great Eastern Hwy, Graeme Muston come through with a 30 second gap on the main bunch, with less than three minutes to the remaining Scratch riders in a smaller bunch but chasing hard. With just a handful of kilometres to race, both groups were together on the approach to the finish in Mundaring.
About Kim from the finish the riders had a hard left hand turn off the highway followed by a right-hand turn 300m further along then a 400m uphill sprint to the finish. Unfortunately for Mark 'Slim' Petterson he overcooked the lefthander off the highway and crashed heavily. As the bunch sprinted up the hill, Ed Hollands proved to strong for Jason Rigg (both Scratch) with Michael Darlington (15min) and Jon Pettingill (15min) filling out the minor placings. Apart from being shaken and with some deep grazing, Mark Petterson is okay.
Results, 134 km handicap
1 Ed Hollands (Scr) 2 Jason Rigg (Scr) 3 Michael Darlington (15 min) 4 Jon Pettingill (15 min) 5 Warren Potma (15 min) 6 Ben Miles (10 min) 7 Brendon Rowbottom (6 min) 8 Steven Evans (15 min) Fastest Time: Ed Hollands 3.22.36 1st Woman: Amber Malone 1st U19: Ben Miles