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Results and Reports for May 11-17, 2002
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Randwick Botany Cycling Club
Demanding Conditions At Heffron Park
Heffron Park, May 11, 2002
By John Buckton
The overcast and windy conditions saw a reduced field on the starting line at the weekly Randwick Botany Cycling Club race at Heffron Park on Saturday 11 May 2002. To further test the riders' skills, rain commenced to fall half way through the race program, adding another demanding dimension to the already poor conditions. These conditions saw quite a few retirements; the stalwarts however battled on regardless.
The seven man A Grade bunch stayed largely together until about four laps to go when David Stewart from Eastern Suburbs Club hit out and obtained a sizeable gap on the bunch. Randwick Botany junior rider Chris Jenkins who is only just coming back from injury, took off from the bunch in an attempt to get across to Stewart. Chris didn't quite make it and found himself in "no man's land". John Kenny tried the same thing about a lap later and was able to get across to Chris Jenkins but not quite able to make it across to Stewart. Chris Jenkins, tired by this stage, backed off and came back into the chasing group. Both David Stewart and John Kenny were able to maintain their respective gaps in front of the bunch and as a result finished first and second respectively. Third place came down to a bunch sprint and Jenkins tactics paying off. After resting at the back of the bunch he was able to take the sprint for third place.
In the B Grade race, there were a few early attacks which saw Dave Mackey and Craig Dempsey get a break from the field but they were quickly reeled back in. Jason Webb put in a concerted effort about four laps to go which saw him get away from the bunch for about two laps by himself. The bunch worked well together and managed to get Jason back. The race came down to a bunch sprint with David Watkinson first, Craig Dempsey second and newcomer to B grade, Brad Lane, third.
The C grade bunch also stayed together, the conditions testing many of the riders. Michael Murdoch was not so lucky when he moved sharply to make way for the passing A grade bunch and his wheels lost traction sending him for a bit of a slide. Luckily, a few band aides and some new handlebar tape was all that was needed. The bunch sprint was very close and a huge scream at the finish left no doubt in everyone's mind that Randwick Botany's Matthew Tabone had finally won his first C grade race narrowly from Andrew Hudson and Bruce Watkins.
D grade stuck together in the demanding conditions. About five laps to go however, John Harrs rode off the front of the bunch and just kept going for an easy ride away victory. Melanie Hassan chased for two laps in an effort to chase Harrs down but never quite got across to him. Melanie then backed off and rejoined the D Grade bunch for the final sprint. Melanie was successful in holding on to her second place with Mark Murdoch coming in third in his first ever placing in a bike race.
Four events were conducted by the Junior Development Officer, Peter Zala, in the Junior program. "A" grade had an 8km individual time trial and 8 km scratch race. The B graders had a 4km individual time trial and a 6km scratch race.
Randwick Botany Cycling Club conducts racing at Heffron Park, Maroubra NSW each Saturday throughout the year. Juniors start at 1.00pm and Seniors 2.30pm. For more information please contact the club secretary Helen Vella on 02 9667 3307.
Seniors A Grade, 36km 1 David Stewart (Eastern Suburbs) 2 John Kenny (Eastern Suburbs) 3 Chris Jenkins (Randwick Botany) B Grade, 32km 1 David Watkinson (North Sydney) 2 Craig Dempsey (Eastern Suburbs) 3 Brad Lane (Randwick Botany) C Grade, 32km 1 Matthew Tabone (Randwick Botany) 2 Andrew Hudson 3 Bruce Watkins D Grade, 20km 1 John Harrs 2 Melanie Hassan (BRATS) 3 Mark Murdoch (Randwick Botany) E Grade, 14km 1 Norman Jew (Randwick Botany) Juniors A Grade Individual Time Trial, 8km 1 Andy Powell, 14.34 2 Thomas Murdoch, 14.37 3 Andrew Young, 14.50 4 Michael Murdoch, 15.06 5 Belinda Angwin, 15.26 6 Pita Vea, 15.49 A Grade Scratch, 8km 1 Michael Murdoch 2 Thomas Murdoch 3 Andy Powell Prime: Michael Murdoch B Grade Individual Time Trial, 4km 1 Adriano Maradini, 9.11 2 Nicolas Mellick, 10.51 3 James Warne, 11.21 4 Taylor Aitchison, 12.16 Junior B Grade, 6km 1 Adriano Maradini 2 Taylor Aitchison 3 Nicholas Mellick 4 James Warne