Mountain Month continued for Warragul Cycling Club members on Saturday. The race consisted of a two stage timed tour. The first race was on the relatively flat terrain of the Cloverlea circuit. From there, riders headed up the six kilometre long climb that is the Yarragon Hill. The combined time for the two races would determine the winner on the day.
In D grade Pam Benstead showed good form in both races. Junior rider James Lalor took out the first race in a sprint finish from Pam with Cy Monk a distant third. Tammy Patrick punctured which slowed her down. On the hill climb it was James and Tammy who set off at a solid pace that Pam did not try to match. Tammy maintained it to the top to win this stage. Pam passed James one third of the way up the hill and went on to take out the fastest time of the day.
In C grade Trevor Rollinson, Callam Barker and Steve Muggeridge staged an epic battle on the climb. All three finished close together on the flat stage so time gaps on the climb would be all important. Callam set the pace and Steve and Trev had to try to hang on. Callam’s surges at the three and five kilometre marks on the climb were enough to drop Steve and Trev. Steve and Callam finished level on overall time but Callam was awarded the race as he won the mountain stage.
B grade staged a lively race on the flat as Rob Monk and Paul Yeatman knew there only hope was to get some serious time into the field before the Yarragon hill ascent. Clint Hick looked strong and was keen to get up the road but when Rob made his move with 5km to go Clint was made to chase by the rest of the field. Yeatman and Col Brown were dropped as Clint, Brett Rowlinson and Matt Kennelly caught Rob within a kilometre of the finish. Matt surprised the bunch with a quick counter attack that gave him the race. Brett chased hard to get second while Clint took the time bonus for third. On the hill climb the riders spread out after one km and the gaps continued to widen after that. Clint first, Brett second, Col third, Paul forth (clawing his way back with many surges after being the first to be dropped), Rob fifth and Matt had nothing left after winning the first race and finished a distant sixth.
The A graders all finished the flat race together so the hill climb would determine the final order. Rolan Elson from the Latrobe City Cycling Club showed the locals how to climb and took out the win. In second spot was Dave Shanahan also from the Latrobe City club. Geoff Thomson took third spot.
Next week is the Warragul Cycling Club Championship race. The race will determine the club champions in the Open Mens, Masters, Juniors and Women’s sections. All members of the club are encouraged to attend what should be a great race around the Lillico-Christies Road circuit. Racing starts at the Lillico tennis courts at 2.00pm. Be there.