By Rob Monk
Conditions could not have been better for the Bikeland Scratch Race at Darnum on Saturday.
A and B grade combined with field of 16 riders. Shane Stiles, Leigh Hauxwell, Jimmy Lalor and Cy Monk were prominent at the front of the race early as the first few laps were completed with the bunch all together. The field split in half on lap 4.
“A grade” riders Hauxwell and Stiles missed the split so it was only a matter of time before they jumped back across the gap. They waited a half a lap and then took off before the start finish line. Rob Monk latched onto the A graders to gain a nice tow back onto the leaders.
By Sturs Road the lead group was 10 riders strong. Paul Yeatman, Geoff Thomson and George Tambassis were dropped from the lead bunch but managed to chase back on as any organisation among the leaders disintegrated. Only Jason Dastey and Justin Prestidge were tailed off.
Some short lived attacks were tried on the bell lap but none would succeed. The field rounded the final corner all together. Stiles led the group but decided he’d done enough with 500 meters to go. Jayman Prestidge took over the leadout. Rob Monk followed him with Glen Marriot and Cy Monk ready to pounce. At 100 meters to go Marriot and Cy flew by the tiring Prestidge and Monk. Cy was “Sagan like” in the sprint taking it easily from Glen Marriott. He took out his first A grade win in style. Marriott was second with Jayman Prestidge showing some form to hold on to third from a fast finishing Rob Monk.
A big C grade field of 12 riders stayed together for most of the race.
Each lap Jayden Manintveld would escape on the Fonterra hills and be dragged back by the others by Sturs Rd. New comer to C grade Andrew Gordon was prominent in the chase downs until the last lap when his hard work took its toll and he was dropped. Gordon wanted mention made of the efforts of Danny Dilger who managed to finish a C grade race for the first time this year.
On the last lap Jayden Manintveld would not be caught and went on to win in a sprint from Xavier Prescott, Kaylene Chaproniere (First Female), John Davine and John Taylor . (LCCC). Jayden has been promoted to B grade.
The D graders raced over 5 laps. They didn’t stay together long. Col Manintveld was too strong and made it two wins for the Manintveld family. Michelle Scurr was second and Peter O’Donnell, in his first race, put in a great effort to take out third.
A&B Grade Combined
1st Cy Monk (A Grade)
2nd Glenn Marriott B
3rd Jayman Prestidge B
4th Rob Monk B
5th Graeme Parker A
6th Jack Walk B
1st Jayden Manitveld
2nd Xavier Prescott
3rd Kaylene Chaproniere
4th John Davine
5th John Taylor (LCCC)
1st Col Manitveld
2nd Michelle Scurr
3rd Peter O’Donnell