2014 Gunning 2 Day
Peter McLennan Memorial Gunning Two Day Tour 17 - 18 May 2014
You know an event is off to a good start when the club president and club handicapper are just two of those offering to help as marshalls. If the trend persists, we will need to publish selection criteria to guide us choosing helpers for Gunning 2015!
Warmish weather, albeit very windy, good bunch sizes and safe riding made the 2014 Gunning Two Day a memorable one. All stages started on time and results were available quickly, despite printer troubles for the time trial. All in all a great event, thanks to the riders and the enthusiastic group of experienced helpers.
The event commemorates the late Peter McLennan, who was tragically killed in an accident over 5 years ago. Peter worked very hard to build club numbers up, lobbied for a criterium and first suggested the race vehicle we all benefit from.
The prologue time trial started right on time and riders were off, plunging down towards the Fish River and up to what seems an impossibly steep climb. Most grades finished within 30 seconds from fastest to slowest and the B and C grade times were almost identical. Standout times were the Mankewich / Carruthers time in A grade at 5.07 and Charles Nicoll's blistering 05.14. Jeff Culnane's F grade winning time would not have been greatly out of place in A grade.
Stage 1 was a 50 km road race to Breadalbane for all grades with sprint primes on the Cullerin range. A grade let the tandem break away, a mistake not to be repeated the next day. Memorable sprints from Sean Ifland (B), Terry Moore (D) and David Gunther (E) saw convincing wins respectively, while Jeff Culnane raced the line for F grade with over a minute in front. Mark Taylor in C grade could only have been millimetres in front and in a hotly-contested race, at least 3 members came back to the finish line, just to double-check that the line judge had not changed his mind ...
Spare a thought for Lynne Prentice, in her first ever race, finishing G grade with dogged determination. Al Bontjer finished hoping the NRMA would have unlocked his car for him. He had inadvertently locked it many hours before, having found out the hard way that it auto-locks after 30 seconds, whether the keys have been taken out or not!
Sunday was warm, but with the usual strong headwind. In some years, not many return for day 2, but in 2014, large bunches started. There were many tired riders and it was not too long before Ashley Sked returned, having being tipped off about a Terry Moore attack up towards Cullerin, which he led out. With not enough racing under the belt this year, the effort cost him his chance and with some irony, later caused Terry to drop to the back of her grade.
Strong surges were obvious at the half way point, where riders took on water bottles. It is always inspiring to see Reinhard Mauch, who gets faster each year, off the front of B grade.
With 2.5 hours' racing all done, the final sprints were memorable. Christophe Barberet reprised his 2013 effort, with an almost 20 second gap over Mark Harris. A dozen B grade riders came in almost together, while in C grade, Dave Hennessy, desperate to avoid duplicating yesterday's photo finish, came flying up the hill well clear of all chasers. D grade charged across the line in close succession while in F grade, Jeff Culnane cemented his placing with a 20 second gap.
G grade rode a very tactical race on each day, with a convincing final sprint from Lindsay Graham. Leon Horsnell was not far behind, sprinting in small chain ring with legs pumping furiously.
Congratulations to the overall winners from the grades: Christophe Barberet (A), Sean Ifland (B), Mark Taylor (C), Geoff Strang (D), David Gunther (E), Jeff Culnane (F) and Lindsay Graham (G).
This year, the Gunning Showground was unavailable, so the Race Committee provided an equivalent refreshment and temporarily one-armed club president Alex O'Shea handed out medals and trophies, signalling the conclusion of a most successful event.
Many volunteers helped out, giving up their chance to ride. Sally Thompson clocked up over 150 km escorting bunches up and down the Gunning - Breadalbane road.
The club is very appreciative of the efforts of: Alex O'Shea, Bill Frost, Clare Darcy, Elton Ivers, Frank O'Sullivan, Henry Beaverstock, Jan Koehler, Kathryn Passalis, Mary Lovett, Michael Hanslip, Nick Boylan, Richard Bourne, Richard Gorell, Robert Langridge, Rosemary Robinson, Ross Robinson, Sally Thomson and Vince Dunn.
And a special thanks to Bill Frost for race refereeing for the 2 days.
Placings in each race are based on fastest time which includes deduction of time bonuses
for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places at each intermediate sprint and 1st to 5th places at the finish line.
MARSHALS - SATURDAY
MARSHALS - SUNDAY
Bill Frost (Referee) Henry Beaverstock Jan Koehler Robert Langridge Sally Thomson Richard Bourne Nick Boylan Elton Ivers Alex O'Shea Kathryn Passalis Michael Hanslip
Bill Frost (Referee) Henry Beaverstock Jan Koehler Rosemary Robinson Ross Robinson Richard Gorell Sally Thomson Elton Ivers Alex O'Shea Frank O'Sullivan Clare Darcy Vince Dunn Nick Boylan Mary Lovett