Weekend Update

This week...

- The Mansfield Tour;
- Monday's Dirt Crits;
- Pics from Thursday's road race;
- Bella's Trivia Night;
- Last week's road races; and
- Other results and upcoming events.

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 The flags have arrived. The new arch can't be far away either...

The flags have arrived. The new arch can't be far away either...

Mansfield Tour coming up...

If you haven't already, please keep Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 March free to help out at the Mansfield Tour. In fact, why not email Race Director Di Condie NOW to let her know you're available?!
It'll be here before we know it.

Dirt Crits, Monday 20 February

by Jason Parker

Bruce Halket led the riders off on 10 laps of a shortened Dirt Crits lap, the total opposite of last week’s course. Tom MacMunn and Dan Friday (Snr) set off 1 minute later with Lee Noble with 40 seconds to bridge across to the pair.
At the 2½ minute mark Damian set off on 9 laps. After a long wait Dave Bock was sent off, with Mike Davies a further minute back.
The 5 lappers were sent off next with William Grundy on 13.45, Rachael Grundy on 14 minutes and James Griffin on 14½ minutes. Elise Empey and Dan Friday (Jnr) set off at the 18 minute mark with an aggressive sprint to the single track. Ruby Dobson and Bella Green were keen to set off on their 3 laps before the next group came through the finish line. Finn Baker headed off on his 2 lap journey at 22 minutes.
It became clear quite quickly that even though the course was short, it was very challenging and by the half-way mark fatigue was starting to show. Dave was showing Mike a clean set of heels. Elise had broken away from Dan F (Jnr) and was gaining ground on the riders in front of her. The 10-lappers, Lee, Dan F (Snr), Tom and Bruce, were lapping quickly, as was Damian. The 5-lappers, James and Rachael, continued to ride consistently, as did Ruby.
William and Elise had begun riding together toward the end of the race and were making good ground on Bella. It was going to be a tough ask for the back markers to get up. Tom continued to spin his way through the race on his lithe single speed, slowly pulling away from Dan, riding a much heavier bike, but not short on courage nevertheless.
As the last lap was called to each rider it became clear that the Junior riders were most likely going to take the cash, notwithstanding a miracle.
By the time that Bella, William and Elise had entered the final ‘S’s before the finish line, they were all together and it was clear that it was going to be a sprint finish. Unfortunately, after trying so hard to stay away from William and Elise, Bella’s bike washed out on the second last corner, allowing William the opportunity to sprint away from Elise in a time of 34.24.
Bella followed the pair in - bad luck. Mister quiet achiever, Dave Bock, was a further 12 seconds back (4th), followed by Dan Friday (Jnr) in 35.09 and Ruby Dobson 6th in 35.40. Bruce had a great race and was able to stay away from his 10 lap pursuers, Tom 11th, Dan F (Snr) 13th and Lee 14th. Damian finished in 36.13 (8th), with James coming in 9th (36.19) and Mike 10sec back in 36.29. Finn was a further 2 minutes back- a great effort for a little guy! Rachael rounded out the field, coming in behind Lee.
Thanks to Damian for the handicapping and the tough course, to Dave Empey for timing and recording and Kate Stonnill, Daniella Friday and Megan Dobson for providing the riders with encouragement.
Results can be found here.

Howes Creek Road Handicap Race, Thursday 23 February -
Sometimes I just love riding my bike!

by Craig 'Wil' Wilson

Thursday the 23 February saw 27 riders line up to ride a Handicap race on Howes Creek Road - “High Country Cycling at its best”! Just before the race start the wind dropped, providing a wonderful evening ofracing for the assembled crew.
Unusually the big group for the night was ‘limit’ at 10 minutes, a late scratching was Bella MacMunn, (who, by the way, is holding a fundraiser Trivia Night at the Delatite Hotel on Thursday 9 March, all welcome… promises to be big!)
If limit could only work together they might produce an upset and beat the Handicapper and Block riders of Dan 'Cav’s evil twin' Purcell and Josh 'Half the man I used to be' Hopwood and the lone ‘Scratchie’ Kian Lerch-McKinnon.
Limit riders Di Condie, David Jagger, David Bock, Gretchen Nadenbousch, Kody Appleton, Steve Curnow and Craig ”Wil” Wilson rode extremely well together providing a strong group for the rest of the field to chase.
Turns out they did their job very well!
At the finish line the Limit group reigned supreme with Nadenbousch riding away, after catching (One Hill) Wil on the last rise and riding away to victory. Wil managed to hold onto second place and secure valuable points in the season aggregate trophy. In third place was our local, friendly camel driver Steve Curnow.
Fastest time on the night was Dan “Yes I look like Mark Cavendish” Purcell.
And the most stylish ride was attributed to Matilda Wilson, who’s bike managed 2nd place steered by her Dad. Chapeau Tilley’s Bike!
This week marks the beginning of the European Racing season with Het Niewsblad in Belgium on Saturday and Kurne-Brussels-Kurne on Sunday - so many late nights and excited early hours to come.
The Mansfield Tour is on 18 and 19 March, which is a great opportunity to showcase our Shire and our home. (You might have seen our new flags at the main roundabout in town.) National and State road series competitors in will be in our town! If you would like to be involved …get in touch with the Mansfield Mt Buller Cycling Club via www.mmbcc.org.au
Thank you to our volunteers, Commissaires and the courteous drivers on Howes Creek Road.
“Gotta love riding!!”
Many thanks to Tony Copland for the pics and here are the results.

Bella's Trivia Night

Bella Macmunn is aiming to raise $5000 for a service trip to East Timor. She is hosting a Trivia Night fundraiser on Thursday 9 March at the Delatite Hotel at 7.30pm.
If you'd like to book at seat at one of the MMBCC tables we'll be putting together, please contact Leonie McLaughlinon on 0417 598 220 or send her an email.
The road race that night is the Individual Time Trial out at Piries. Presentations for the race will be back at the Delatite anyway, so why not join in the Trivia Night afterwards?
If you can't make it to the Trivia Night, have a look at Bella's Facebook Page for more information or go directly to the fundraising page here to help her reach her fundraising target.

 Everyone looks happy to have finished, except Jock!

Everyone looks happy to have finished, except Jock!

Race Reports for Thursday 16 and Sunday 19 February

by Jarrod Appleton

Last week saw Mansfield’s road racing cyclists venture to Jamieson twice for two very different races.
Thursday evening's race followed the Goulburn River for 14km from Jamieson past Kevington to the turnaround and back to Jamieson. This course has become very popular since its inception last season due to the magnificent scenery.
The scenery was probably surpassed by Sunday’s race, however, riders with serious ambitions for a high placing couldn’t enjoy the views as they punished themselves on the 10km ascent from Jamieson up to Bald Hill Gap. With a total ascent of 540 metres and an average gradient on 5.3% this race gave riders who are more adept at climbing a chance to test themselves.
Thursday’s Bakker Plumbing Handicap attracted the highest quality field of male competitors Mansfield can currently muster. The three young guns Kian Lerch-MacKinnon, Dan Purcell, and Josh Hopwood were entered. They are all currently very fit and succeeding in the racing they are doing. The big question was how would they be handicapped?
It eventuated that Kian had to start of scratch 30 seconds behind Dan and Josh. Kian made up this 30 second deficit within 6km from the start, possibly aided by a fatigued Josh who is training very hard for the Tour of Mansfield which is only a month away. Josh was soon dropped as Dan and Kian proceeded to mow down the rest of the field.
Many of the groups of riders in front of them had been caught by faster riders coming from behind and consequently had formed a large group which was being driven on the front by Darren Bakker, Mauro Brega, Bruce Halket, Aaron Peterson and Rob Skinner. The flying females, Janine Appleton and Melanie Green, and a number of others were tenaciously drafting on the rear of these five. Unfortunately for some in this group, they were caught on a small hill by the raging pair of Dan and Kian. Most simply didn’t have the power to accelerate and get onto the back of the young guns but a notable exception was the old sprint stalwart Bakker. Could he, with experience and race craft, get the better of the two younger men?
Dan took line honours followed by Kian who also had the fastest time and Darren was third. Fastest female was Janine Appleton.
A very cold Sunday morning and a daunting up hill race only attracted ten riders.
Alex Green rolled off first followed a minute later by his wife Melanie and Janine Appleton. It took the two women 5km to catch Alex but the chase had taken a toll on Melanie who was dropped shortly after by Janine.
Around this point all three were caught by Jarrod Appleton who had started with Darren Bakker and Mauro Brego three minutes behind the female pair. Looking at the handicapping before the start Jarrod had calculated that based on a minute and half head start on Bruce Halket and Luke Olver and 4 minutes on Rob Curtis and Dan Purcell he was a chance for a win. Consequently he lightened his bike by removing his water bottle, spare tube, computer and heart rate monitor before the start. The gamble paid off.
He crossed the line 30 seconds ahead of Luke and Bruce followed in third place about a minute later. Janine Appleton was again fastest female and fourth overall. Rob Curtis, fondly known as the Climbing Columbian (because he climbs fast like a Columbian and has some resemblance to one) set the fastest time.

Other results

Congratulations to Matt Empey who placed 8th in U17 Men's in the Downhill at Mt Beauty at round 3 of the National Series. That gives him 16th overall for the series.
Well done too to Kian Lerch-McKinnon for 5th in Elite Men (not his usual U19) class at the Vic MTB Champs round 4 at Bendigo last weekend.

Upcoming events...

Handicap Road Race, Thursday 2 March, Whitfield Road (Course 9) 22km. Please be on time for registration at 5.30 - we're going to go for a quick ride beforehand to discuss positioning and safety during races. (Duty: Belinda, Darren, Jason.)
Handicap Road Race, Sunday 5 March, Summer Sunday Series Round 3, Old Tolmie Road Loop. (Duty: Janine, Rod, Anthony.)
Please have a look at the road race calendar here to check when you're rostered on for duty!
Recreational Ride, Whittlesea Challenge, Sunday 30 April.