LEONGATHA Cycling Club used a new course on Saturday with racing starting at Dumbalk through Mirboo up the Limonite hill and then out toward Boolara South before turning and retracing the route.
With riders enjoying fantastic autumn weather they were well and truly warmed up after the climb to the turn.
The numbers were down for the Saturday racing with a number of riders racing at the Ararat Junior tour.
The handicapper had 16 entries.
This saw two start at 20 minutes – Sally Head and Graham Jans, followed by Mark Bensley, Rod Cheyne, Tony Giles and Kerry Pritchard at 14 minutes.
The middle markers were Gavin Slavin, Bernadette Fitzgerald, Kevin Feely and Rob Monk (Warragul) on seven minutes whilst there was a six rider scratch bunch of Thomas McFarlane, Stefan Kirsch, Brian Sing, Harrison McLean, Clem Fries and Will Lumby.
At the turn the leading trio were Sally, Rod and Tony with a gap of two minutes over Graham and Mark with a further gap to Kerry, Rob and Kevin Feely at around three minutes.
Gavin Slavin turned just ahead of the scratch bunch survivors, Thomas, Stefan, Brian and Harrison who were still five minutes adrift.
The mainly down-hill run back to Dumbalk saw the scratch bunch pick up all but the leading trio.
The scratch bunch started to watch each other and not continue to work as they neared the end and this allowed the leading trio to come in around 200m ahead of the scratch bunch.
In the dash to the line Sally Head took the win from Tony Giles and Rod Cheyne.
Thomas McFarlane took out the bunch sprint to take fourth and fastest with a time of 1hr12.1 minutes for the 46km.
Next in was Harrison just ahead of Brian, Stefan, Rob, Kerry and rounding out the top 10 was Gavin Slavin.
The B Grade field was down to just three riders with the other juniors away at Ararat.
This trio raced 24km out to the Turton Creek Road junction and return as a scratch race.
In the dash to the line it was Kaleb Jans winning from Zach Stubbs-Taylor and Greg Bradshaw.
Next week club racing will move westward with racing starting and finishing at Kernot.
However, the field may again be small as there is a major tour on at Warrnambool – this time for the senior riders.
Juniors up against it
At Ararat, the club members were in big fields with a large contingent of South Australian riders in attendance.
Thomas Fitzgerald (M15 B Grade) was sixth in the opening time trial as was Oliver McLean in the M15 A Grade field.
Grace McLean riding in the W17 field ran 13th while Austin Timmins in the M17 field was fifth in the time trial.
With the tour decided on the overall time the riders would have to do well in the remaining two road stages to finish up well in the overall classification.
However, Stage wins would always be welcome.
In the Saturday afternoon road stage both Austin and Thomas were second in their respective races.
Austin managed to gain time on several of the riders in front of him to move into second overall whilst Thomas was right back in contention.
The Sunday road races again saw Austin run second and secure third overall in the tour whilst Thomas finished fourth but lost several seconds to his main opposition and this left him in second place overall in the road racing.
Oliver was always in the mix but had a few riders ahead of him in each stage.
Grace succumbed to some difficulties and could not start all her stages.