The A grade group of 15 riders stayed together fleetingly. Shane Stiles and Brenton Jones seemed keen to jump around like peanuts right from the start. The first time up the King St hill they put 100 meters into the field and managed to hold that advantage for much of lap two. They were eventually chased down largely due to the efforts of Chris Joustra with some help from “The Muppets”, Jimmy Lalor and Jarred Jones.
The thrid time up King St, Stiles and Jones took off again and only Joustra was able to follow. The rest of the field breathed a sigh of relief as the three powerhouses took off for the rest of the race. They settled into a battle for fourth place.
Jones and Stiles drove on for lap after lap as Jousta hung on grimly. At the bell Jones flew up the king St hill with Stiles on his wheel. Joustra was dropped and rolled in for third. Jones took the victory from Stiles in second place.
The battle for forth was a tactical affair. Jarred Jones was keen to get off the front. With three laps to go Jarryd Jones, Danny Dilger and Rolland Elstrom established a handy break off the front. Rob Monk was able to get over to them and this signalled the end of the race for some as the chasing group splintered. Jimmy Lalor, Jerome Bechez, Joe Patrick, Tony Clarke and Andrew Nicols were dropped. Monk and Jarred Jones tried to establish a break but Whelan and Thomson managed to drag Roland and Dilger back and with two to go there were 8 riders left. Danny Dilger took advantage of the cat and mouse tactics being employed and jumped away with a lap and a half to go. Being close to the finish Monk, Jones and Thomson were reluctant to spend too much energy on the chase so Dilger soon had a handy lead.
Danny dug deep and held a 200 meter lead round the home turn. Pete Whelan took up the chasing role for the second week in a row. He closed to within 100 meters of Dilger before Monk took over leading out Thomson and Jarrad Jones. Dilger looked like he was peddling through sand but he would not be caught and he held on for fourth by 10 meters. Jarryd Jones was fifth followed by Thommo, Rob and Roland.
George Tambassis appeared for his first race in B grade looking shaved and dangerous but in the end he was beaten by a young lad who has never seen a razor. Tambassis is on a learning curve steeper than the climb to Mt Baw Baw .
Tambassis led the group up the King St hill on lap one but his quads were soon stinging. He managed to stay with the group for the first four laps but repeated attacks on lap five by first Steve Muggeridge, then Cy Monk and finally Paul Yeatman saw Tambassis off the back and completing the remainder of the race in solitary confinement. Muggeridge was keen to force the pace at every opportunity and Yeatman looked strong everywhere except the King St hill.
Lightweight junior flyers Cy Monk and Jayden Manintveld were joined by Leongatha junior Morgan Clarke. These three formed a formidable foil for the experienced Trev Rollinson. Trev was giving the young blokes 50 years in age but they could not drop him despite Cy and Jayden giving it everything up the King St hill on the final lap.
Rounding the last turn Charlie Davine thought he could ride the field off his wheel and opened up a small gap. Morgan Clarke worked hard to chase Charlie down. Tim Vandershaw took over with 500 meters to go but he had Cy Monk locked onto his wheel. Cy came off the wheel with 200 to go and took out his first B grade win. Morgan Clarke hung on well to take second. Trev Rollinson showed there was plenty of life in the old bloke yet and sprinted well for third. Then followed Tim Vandershaw, Ross Henry, Jayden Manintveld, Charlie Davine and Steve Muggeridge. Tambassis rolled in last and will be wiser for the experience.
Simon “Bad Back” Baxter took on the chaperone role in C grade. Graeme Patrick was strong all race and Paul Kennedy rode like a man who’d had a great holiday. In racing terms Keno didn’t really fire first up from a spell and looked like he’d been in a good paddock. Greg Horbowicz put his weightlifting backgroud to good effect by pushing his biggest gear up the King St hill. Greg had a mechanical mishap that prevented him from changing gears. Bad Back Baxter led out the sprint and only Graeme Patrick was able to come over the top. Pete Davine was third with Paul Kennedy fourth. Then followed Phil Bechez, Ken Whitaker, Jon Davine and Greg.
A big thank you to Ann De Bona who took entries and ran the race today.