Howdy folks

What a beautiful night to run our first event on the wonderful Southwards Musuem Circuit.

Lots of smiles and fun was had - with a few boundaries being stretched and lungs being pushed - which is what it's all about.   Growing your abilities in a safe - flowing - and flat out fun environment.

It was really nice to see a number of new riders joining us.  A huge welcome goes out to Luke Keller, Billy Gibbs and his dad Pete, Justin Fraser, Fraser Beggs and Nigel Page.  With the exception of Nigel, all of them new to bike events, and all had a blast!  

We were a bit late getting started - due to a touch of working getting in the way - and then not being able to get in the gate!   We have a key - and it's the correct one - but it seems the mechanism has been damaged in the recent storm and wasn't working.   But Levi from Southwards thankfully came down and let us in (and closed up after us - thanks Levi).   So hopefully this will be sorted for next week.

We ran two grades - a combined C/D grade and a combined A/B grade.

So how did it play out?   Well great riding in both grades...

C/D grade

It's always hard in the first event when nobody is sure how fit everyone is...  Is that guy doing it easy?  Is he looking strong - but really it's just looks and he won't be able to survive when the pace goes on? Man she's looking fast!  So there was quite a bit of people looking at each other and trying to figure who was strong.   In the end, the group stayed pretty much intact right through to the end.  With 2 laps to go Luke (in his first ever bike event) decided - enough was enough - I'm having a go.  I was at the front at that stage and gave him a little encouragement to go and made myself big enough at the front to let him get a nice gap before others reacted.  Glynis and I have been doing some skills coaching with a group of college kids who are taking on the Coast to Coast in Jan - and Luke is one of them - so I know he's got a great turn of pace and could hold if for a couple of laps.   And so it turned out - Luke managed to hold off a fast chasing pack.  Wonderful stuff Luke -  fantastic ride.  John Pratt showed that he's still got that sprint by taking 2nd from Ian Fraser (lots of Fasers in the race!).   Greg Cundy, who's nursing himself back to fitness, took 4th from Billy Gibbs and Fraser Beggs who both did spectacularly well in their first-ever event.   Dianna Borman was the first of the D grade home and took that from Doug Barrett.

  1. Luke Keller
  2. John Pratt
  3. Ian Fraser
  4. Greg Cundy
  5. Billy Gibbs
  6. Fraser Beggs
  7. Adrian McKenzie
  8. Oscar Goodwin
  9. Dianna Borman
  10. Doug Barrett
  11. Justin Fraser
  12. Pete Gibbs

Check out a video of the first few laps HERE...

A/B grade

Wow! There were some great rides here. You can watch the whole thing playing out on the video link below - with the video onboard Katie Richard's bike.  After an initial period of calm - Nigel Page put in a nice attack - and got a good gap quickly with a nice acceleration.   But Mike Proudfoot and Katie Richards weren't having that and quickly jumped across to Nigel and then put their collective feet down and rode away.  Nigel went back to the main bunch while Mike and Katie continued to ride away for the entire event.   They were at first pulling away - which then turned to closing down the bunch once they got more than halfway around the 700m circuit.   It was going to be touch and go to see if the two of them would have the legs or the will to lap the main field.  But lap them they did, with a few laps to spare.  They tried to ride straight through the bunch as soon as they caught with Mike putting a great acceleration - but it didn't stick initially.   But a lap or so later Mike managed to get away again, over the top of the hill - and rode solo to victory - more than a lap up on all but Katie.   Next home was Katie - who still had a sprint after her adventure with Mike.  It was close to Nigel Page who was an animator in his first time on the circuit - nice riding Nigel.  A nice 4th was taken by Lee Pownall - who's fitness seems to be on the rise, from the irrepressible Gary Clareburt in another impressive ride.

  1. Mike Proudfoot
  2. Katie Richards
  3. Nigel Page
  4. Lee Pownall
  5. Gary Clareburt
  6. Leon Goodwin
  7. Dwight Garton
  8. Paul Rawlinson
  9. Tristan Ratcliffe

But chapeau (hats off) to Mike and Katie - fantastic effort by both and impressive to watch.

Watch it all from Katie's perspective HERE.

Big thanks to Paul Rawlinson for setting up and taking down the course and towing the trailer - and then managing the first race.   Thanks Paul.  It was nice to see Grace at racing - and she's offered to help with race management next week.

Thanks everyone for a fantastic night. 

Tell your friends and let's see a great turnout for the next one next week.

Ngā mihi | Regards