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Mildura-Comealla Cycling Club

Merbein, Victoria, February 2, 2003

Another for Tankard

By Peter Winton

15 riders journeyed to the irrigation settlement of Merbein (Vic) for this week's cycling hit out. A much better roll up than earlier weeks, well I said recently that January wasn't a good month for our races. What! You don't read my articles? To those that enjoy my literary scribbles, you are invited to read on.

Is there any other President of a Club who has to race in scratch? And they never have before? Have any one of you... oh, never mind, I'll get over it.

Today the handicap groups were: limit - Dat Rudd (ha, ha first road race), Dion Basse-Anstee, Barry Pollock, Kevin Gregory (in a rare summer appearance) and Jack Lokan. Chopping block consisted of Arthur Anderson (fresh from surgery), Peter Mills and Nathan Welsh. And then the shock announcement of the scratch bunch Richard Hale, Ian Beruldsen, Kevin Tankard, Geoff Marshall and yours truly. Yeah, OK. Time gaps - Limit 8 minutes to "CB", 2 minutes further to scratch over 6 laps of the Merbein cemetery circuit which is without doubt our toughest circuit.

As we watch them all go I wonder just what's in store for Richard Hale and myself. Adrian Lloyd arrived late and missed the limit markers and was duly slotted into the chopping block, bet he was pleased!

First up task is to not get dropped by Geoff Marshall in the first kilometre, he is a tough old master with many a championship title (in WA) to his name and he recently won a crit in his category at the Jacobs Ck TDU support races. He does go from the gun, and it was 48kms/hr within half a K, not my usual warm up!

On lap 2 we are joined by the very late starting Ian Brade. Ian slots his extra light physique into the mix quite easily and away we go.

"CB' got wound in at the 19kms mark and that provided a bit of relief with Arthur ("Arnthor" of the wheels variety) and bi-athlon national champion Millsy in the mix to do some turns. Next target the limit markers. This is a new perspective for me, being in the scratch bunch and chasing all the others, I was grateful for the additional riders in the bunch I assure you.

Dion Basse-Anstee punctured about this time and limit were reduced to 3.

Caught limit on lap 4 and a half of the 6 lap journey and they were able to stay on. Most likely due to the absence of the other red cannondale bike rider (Rob McNally) away at the Gippsland bushfires. And ride on we did, with Anderson making surging moves on the cemetery climb on the last couple of laps just to show Geoff Marshall that others are strong in the legs as well. Unfortunately the bunch lost Richard Hale after this effort just as the pace quickened on the flat section he was unable to bridge the gap.

The President almost lost it on the left hand descending turn within the last 2 kms, (and who else would take up his role?) as he took a chance at improving his position.

Riders were busily placing themselves, well they should have been, for the final kilometre which is all uphill with a false flat.

Nathan Welsh heads the pack and maintains the pace until the false flat. Next to launch himself off the front is the doctor, and I'm still 2nd wheel. He's got 10 metres on me but he's tiring. I've gotta go round him but it's still 150m to go and all uphill. I just know the big engine and the others are waiting to claim me. Then the thighs collapse, as they always do - when is some pharmacist gonna make a decent energy drink for "us"? One, two, three they go round and Kevin Tankard wins again from Ian Beruldsen and Geoff Marshall. I reckon Millsy beat me but the results sheet doesn't indicate that. I'll have to say 30 Hail Marys for swearing profoundly over my lack of stamina over the last 100 metres.

This Tuesday is a 16km time trial at Riverside. Next Sunday is a 40 minute criterium at the 11th St and Cowra Avenue industrial area.

Results, 48km

1 K Tankard                   1.14.01
2 I Beruldsen
3 G Marshall (visitor)
4 P Winton
5 P Mills
6 A Anderson
7 N Welsh
8 R Hale
9 J Lokan
10 A Lloyd
11 K Gregory
12 B Pollock
13 D Rudd
14 I Brade (one lap down - late start)
DNF D Basse-Anstee



Australian results from the past week

Randwick Botany CC
Carnegie Caulfield CC (Jan 26)
Murwillumbah CC Tyalgum Cup
Illawarra CC Tour de Huntley
Trek Bikes Summer Series #3
Carnegie Caulfield (Jan 21)
Carnegie Caulfield (Jan 28)
Oaks Road Twilight race
Trek Summer Series #4
Canberra CC Crit Series #12
Mersey Valley - Devonport CC


Complete Australian results for 2003