Riders get in final event before 100-Mile Classic

Twelve riders enjoyed the cool, sunny morning, knowing that some morning tea was going to be supplied in honour of Mother’s Day after the race. 

With the wind from the north-west, the riders would enjoy a tailwind start, before battling the headwind on the return leg. 

The first rider to greet the starter was Louise Abraham, who was being asked to ride an Individual Time Trial out in front. 

She had a 16 minute gap to make as much distance before the next group of Jami Buckley, Spek Peake and Mike Bakker were sent off. 

A further two minutes later the group consisting of Phil Stasiw, Dean Zeven, John Cranwell and Bruce McLaughlin left the start line. 

The final four riders are deep in their preparations to tackle the 100 Mile Classic this coming weekend, with Rob Mann, Dave Bryant and Matthew Opperman starting their chase with 21 and a half minutes already on the clock, and Nick Kidman forced to wait a further 90 seconds before he could attempt to chase everyone down. 

The tailwind ride out can be tough for junior riders who have limited gearing, but Buckley held onto his group well to the turn. 

The groups were all working well together and eating  into the time of the groups ahead of them. 

The ride back into the wind was difficult for the riders on their own, and the importance of cohesive groups working together came to the fore. 

The middle groups came together with approximately 8km to go, before being caught by Bryant and Opperman at the 5km marker. 

Some riders tried to jump onto the back of the stronger riders, but were unable to hold the draft, and they powered away. 

Abraham was finally caught with the finish line almost in sight, a strong ride by herself for the entire race, and Bryant won the sprint finish over Opperman to be first and fastest. 

Abraham held on to finish in third position, before the larger group finished. 

In the sprint from that group, it was Buckley who fin- ished next, closely followed by Stasiw, Cranwell, Zeven,  Peake and Bakker. 

Kidman completed his solo ride in 10th place (just missing fastest time honours by 33 seconds), followed by Mann and McLaughlin. 

There will be no club racing next weekend, with members of the club assisting the running of the 100 mile  Classic and SA Kermesse Championships. 

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