Kelly Cycle Coaching cyclist James Black won the 70km JK memorial handicap road race in Geelong last weekend.
James is a masters rider who does most of his training around Williamstown, the You Yangs and the Great Ocean road.
James is currently in training for the Gran Fondo World Championships to be held in Perth over the first 4 days of September. Riders wanting to compete in this event need to reach a qualifying time or placing at a selection event. James participated in a NZ road race to achieve his qualification.
Below is a race report written by Mandy Hoskings:
JK Lambeth Memorial Race 2016
Out and back Forest Rd, Larcombes Rd, out and back Nobles, out and back Forest Rd to Grays, Hendy Main, finish at Larcombes Rd (A) 70kms.
The inaugural running of the JK Lambeth memorial race saw 40 racers brave the elements today. Donning every article of warm clothing in the wardrobe was a good call. Even Juddy wore his arm warmers…yes it was that cold! Now throw in 25 kilometre North Westerly winds with gusts around 35kph and a 70 kilometre undulating course and you have a tough race to contest.
Limit riders Ken Mansfield and Ian Sumner were given a whole 47 minutes head start on Scratch. Gavin Gamble and John Bell (33 mins) had to wait 14 minutes before they could set off. The 26 minute bunch had two of their bunch fail to show on time, so Mandy Hosking, Joe Gulino, Graeme Wilson and new to the club James (watch this space) Black took off with no expectations…track turns was call from the get go.
Tina Stenos and Paul Bubb received their instructions and were given the choice to start with the 14 minute bunch or take off in a bid to catch their bunch…they chose the latter and to their credit stayed away for a considerable time from the large group containing the rugged up Juddy, Vic Mason, Dave Spence, Pete Ladd, Robbie Nicholls, Paul Beasley, Paul Bird and Andrew Booth; whom had been dragged a bunch having won last week’s Rocket Ascent.
The 9 minute bunch took off 38 minutes after limit and reports say they worked well until they were reeled in at the last turn around in Forest Road by scratch, 2nd and 3rd scratch. Visitors from Footscray, Steve Firman and Mark Micallef, (who has just returned to racing after a horror crash that saw him hit by a car and catapulted along the road, sustaining terrible injuries, which also smashed his beloved bike in half; may she rest in peace)…were in the mix until Steve punctured.
Back to the front of the race, John Bell had ridden Gavin Gamble off his wheel racing up Nobles Road and rode solo until catching limit, on the second trip down Forest Road at Gum Flats Road. Ian Sumner jumped on and hung on until the 26min bunch (who’d collected Gavin Gamble) came sweeping by, led by James Black, Graeme Wilson and Joe Gulino, with Mandy Hosking trying to keep up; Ian dropped soon after.
The chasing bunches combined and bearing down on the bunch, James called out to Mandy, John and Gavin to “Have a go, we’ll stay away if we all work.” The three managed a few turns, but Graeme and James were pulling such strong turns, the bunch disintegrated to just three turning into Grays Road…10 kilometres from the finish.
A strong tailwind saw James, Graeme and Mandy hitting 43kph at the end of Grays. A quick check to see if a chase bunch was threatening saw the three breathe a sigh of relief until Graeme discovered he’d punctured. Graeme left James and Mandy to ride away at Jack’s corner and finish off the race for the one, two. Shame, as “Graeme had ridden like a champion and deserved a place.” said Mandy.
The speeds hit by the combined scratch bunches were insane, spitting out riders left right and centre. At the top of the chicane the bunch realised they were racing for the minor placings.
James Black had Mandy riding on the rivet in the strong side headwind up Hendy Main to the Larcombes Road final 700 metres. Mandy sat up leaving James to take out a well deserved first place, by 15 seconds and a good 150 metres. With Scratch giving it a red hot go to the finish, Mandy had to get a wriggle on to the line or be caught. Anthony Seipolt crossed the line a good two bike lengths in front of Josh Williams, who was followed by Noel Taylor, Tony French, Nick Brown, Rich Lyle, Dave Warren and finally Vic Mason.
As always the race could not be conducted without the support of our club officials and marshalls. A big thank you goes to everyone that helped out today. Special thanks to Rob Lambeth and his Stepmum Norma for putting up the awesome trophy. We’ll be looking forward to next year’s race!