It was the Friday before Christmas and all the bikes were gleaming and the riders were ready to race. The final round of the Fixed Wheel Cup was underway in perfect weather conditions. It was a perfect way to wrap up our Friday nights until 8 January. Riders now roll on to our Boxing Day Crit.
With Jake Kauffmann signing on in a small A grade field the organisations somehow decided that it would be a good idea to dispense with the normal handicap for A elite and start all of A grade together. Points leaders Peter Livingston and Matthew Dinham were the early attackers with both watching the other closely. Jake then started doing a few interval efforts with the bunch kept clawing him back each time. Eventually the race split into 3, 3, 3, 2. Jake, Pete and Matthew were away with Conor Tarlington, Brad Hamblett and Scott Austin in the second bunch. Scott soon dropped off but Brad and Conor held the gap for a while but eventually the A grade field were scattered all around the track.
In the last couple of laps Peter sat up knowing he already had an unassailable lead in the point series and his Pilu Degustation Voucher wrapped up. Matthew attacked Jake up the final climb but Jake was breathing down his neck and took a comfortable victory down the straight. Matthew has still put in some great performances this year considering he is U17 and riding restricted gears.
1st – Jake Kauffmann, MWCC
2nd – Matthew Dinham, NSCC and 2nd on points
3rd – Peter Livingston, DHBC and 1st on point winning the Pilu degustation voucher
Chris Taylor was the only one in the top 3 on points to turn up for this round so knew a points victory was in the bag, Chris is somewhat of a trophy race specialist, so he was keen to add another one to the collection. Kieren Tall of Peloton was the first to attack taking Ed Shilland of MWCC with him and the two quickly built up a good lead. Kieren had moved himself down from A and Ed was up from C but the rest of the B graders seemed content to let them go. Kieren attacked again and Ed sat up and went back to the bunch. Dad was giving Kieren updates from the sidelines and he built up a solid 25 second lead before the bunch finally stirred and hauled him back with 10 minutes to go. Klayten Smith from RBCC launched the classic counter as the bunch came together and made a solo bid for victory but he also blew up and then went straight out the back when he was caught with 2 to go. It all came down to a bunch sprint with Michael Berriman narrowly beating Chris Taylor on the line.
1st – Michael Berriman , MWCC and 2nd on points
2nd – Chris Taylor , MWCC and 1st on points
3rd – Ben Johnston, MWCC
C grade started with a crash on lap 2 as young Zac Dawtrey clipped his pedal on the bottom corner and went down hard on his left shoulder. He was up and walking with no bones broken but will be sore in the morning. The bunch seemed content to let Lee Watts from NSCC do all the work and tow them around the course. Lee, obviously fed up with this, attacked on 20 minutes but Tony Holland from MWCC pulled him back and showed that his year of racing has certainly improved his strength levels. No more attacks held so it came down the the bunch gallop down the straight with Steve Lupton proving the strongest.
1st – Steve Lupton, MWCC
2nd – Rohan Douglas, NSCC
3rd, Tony Holland, MWCC
1st on points Richard Lack NSCC.
We will be back at HART on Boxing Day for a morning of racing – sign on 8am for 8:30am racing.
Friday night racing will commence 8 January.