Pemberton Cycle Classic 2012Over the Labour Day long weekend, Eddy Hollands Bicycle Services Racing Team travelled down to Pemberton for a few days of racing.
The criterium was raced on Saturday afternoon. It was a hotdog curcuit up and down the main street of pemberton. So down the hill, u-turn, up the hill, down the hill, u-turn, making it one of the hardest curcuit ever raced in WA. With a few guys and gals saving themselves for the road race the next day the numbers were down but there was still some exciting racing. The team had 4 starters in the B Grade event, Alex Downie, Neil Stummer,Damir Kolonic and Josh Camp. The guys road very well together controlling the race and trying to set it up for either Alex or Neil to finish it off in the sprint. Unfortunately Neil dropped of in the last lap and Alex was caught out of positon but still finished a strong 2nd. Neil coming in 4th.
A Grade had Eddy Hollands, Heksa Prasetya, Matt Upton and Nathan Lyons starting. It wasn't such a good day for the guys as Nathan was the only to finish in 6th place.
With some fresh legs for the road races on Sunday some good results where expected.
A Grade left first, it was a very attacking race from the start but nothing escaped the field until the 2nd last time up Pump Hill. This saw Sam Smith move away with 2 others. This was good for the guys still in the bunch as it took all the pressure of them and they could relax in the bunch waiting for the next move to go. With the front 3 never to be seen again, the next move went with about 15kms to go, 3 more guys moved away with Eddy Controlling this one. Eddy sat on the other 2 until they started to tire, this left Eddy alone for the rest of the day. Up front Sam was looking good until Brad Linfield attacked near the top of Pump Hill for the last time. Sam could not follow this move but still had the legs to outsprint his companion for a very nice 2nd. Eddy Crossed the line alone in 4th. Matt Upton gave Heksa a leadout for the bunch sprint with Heksa finishing 2nd in the bunch giving him 7th on the day, Matt crossed the line in 11th. Chris Glasby spent most of the day alone just of the back the main bunch but still finished, Nathan Lyons was feeling the pinch from the Criterium the day before and abandoned the race.
B Grade was the race of the day for the team. The boys again controlled the race with Damir being aggressive early making the other teams chase and leaving Alex and Neil to relax in the bunch. Going up Pump Hill for the last time, Damir had done his job and didn't have the legs to summit the climb with the bunch but Alex and Neil where still looking very good. Coming down into the finish Alex and Neil positoned themselves nicely within the bunch. With about 100m to go Alex kicked out of the bunch with a very fine win and Neil finishing in 3rd place. Damir crossed the line about 1 minute down but a great team effort by the boys and the best result was achieved.
We had one lady in the Womens Race, Tanya Birkbeck. This being Tanya's first real race for the year, she lacked the race experience and race fitness to be able to stay the girls on this challenging course. But she didn't give up and crossed the line in about 7th place. But she is now more motivated than ever for the upcoming season.
With all the racing out of the way it was now time to enjoy the rest of the long weekend. The team spent the afternoon down at Big Brook Dam then headed back to the hotel for team BBQ. A big thankyou for everyone involved, already looking forward to doing it all again next year.