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Carnegie Caulfield CC
Glenvale Crescent, Mulgrave, February 23, 2003
Back on the program
By Mal Sawford
It was back to the normal Glenvale program after a few weeks of the Regional Criterium series with a warm sunny morning making a mockery of the rainy forecast. A few of the trackies were sleeping in after Saturday's popular Leongatha carnival, but good fields still contested all grades.
Ray Turner (Diamond Back) had to be reminded to launch his opening lap attack, but he quickly obliged with a strong effort that required an early chase from the bunch. Once Turner was recaptured, all eyes turned to the race favorite, Robert Tighello (ACR), who was happy to lie dormant in the bunch during the early stages.
Tighello's team mate Robert Boag and Australian Under 23 rider Jonny Clarke (SBR) were among the early aggressors, and a number of small breaks went up the road, before Tighello warmed up his engine jumping across to a move 20 minutes in. The bunch recognized the danger, and with the chase lead by David Sturt (SBR Colnago) the bunch regrouped.
Boag jumped away again shortly after, quickly joined by Dean Johnstone (O'Mara), Joel Pearson (Bikeland) and Swiss rider Ralph Zimmermann. Tighello watched and waited, and when no chase looked like being organized jumped across the rapidly growing gap. Clarke also left his move to the break very late, and was the last to get on, while the bunch looked in vain for someone to organize a chase.
A chase finally eventuated, but not until the break was out of sight and the six leaders had the race sewn up. Clarke went for the solo win 2 laps from home, but was caught in the home straight, with the sprint win going to a dominant Tighello ahead of Boag, Pearson and Zimmermann.
Attacking rides from the newly promoted Brett Rossiter (Bicycle Superstore), Taigh Banson (CBD Cycles) and leading female competitors Kirsty Bortolin (The Freedom Manchine) and Rachel Rademaker kept the pace high in B Grade. Approaching the finish, a bunch sprint looked likely until 4 riders went clear inside the last 3 laps, with Banson joined by Martin Bole, Danny Kah and Boon Chia.
The sprinters rallied to bring the field back together, only to see Bole counter attack and stay clear for the final lap and half to take a good win. Mark Gainsmith lead the bunch home, with Bortolin, the current leader in the Victorian Women's Criterium series, putting her strong sprint to good use to take outright third ahead of Chia.
A long breakaway from Lee Robinson and Graig Gardiner paid off in C Grade, with the pair combining well to hold off a strong field. In the dash to the line Robinson was too strong for his rival, taking a narrow win, while James Shepherdson lead the bunch home 10 seconds later. Cheryl Hickman took out the Women's division, after Meaghan Godfrey had put a lot of riders to shame leading the chase after the two leaders!
D Grade saw the only bunch sprint for the day, with the win going to the Masters rider Chris Jobson, ahead of Mick Cummings, Brian Stewart and star Blackburn junior Sean Bourke. Fleur Dean took out the Women's section ahead of Melissa Nicholls.
Carnegie Caulfield Criteriums continue every Sunday at Glenvale Crescent, with racing at 6.30pm Tuesday evenings at Sandown Raceway (Melways map 80B10 Sandown Road entrance). All holders of 2003 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 three-race license for $39, deductible from your full membership if you decide to continue racing. For first time competitors, Tokyo Olympian Mick Hollingworth conducts racing clinics in E Grade.
Images by Mal Sawford
A Grade - 1 hour + 3 laps, 35 starters 1 Robert Tighello (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Robert Boag (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Joel Pearson (Warragul CC) 4 Ralph Zimmermann (Switzerland) 5 Jonathan Clarke (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 6 Dean Johnstone (Carnegie Caulfield CC) B Grade - 1 hour + 3 laps, 32 starters 1 Martin Bole (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 2 Mark Gainsmith (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Kirsty Bortolin (Blackburn CC) 4 Boon Chia (Carnegie Caulfield CC) Women 1 Kirsty Bortolin (Blackburn CC 2 Rachel Rademaker (Blackburn CC) C Grade - 50 mins + 3 laps, 34 starters 1 Lee Robinson (St Kilda CC) 2 Craig Gardiner (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 James Shepherdson (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 4 Bruce Trew (Carnegie Caulfield CC) D Grade - 45 mins + 3 laps, 28 starters 1 Chris Jobson (Blackburn CC) 2 Mick Cummings (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Brian Stewart (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 4 Sean Bourke (Carnegie Caulfield CC) E Grade - 40 mins + 3 laps 1 Darren Graham (Noble Park Dandenong CC) 2 Jason Rushen (Carnegie Caulfield CC) 3 Jamie Marshall (Carnegie Caulfield CC)