The day dawned cloudy, clear and cold with no immediate sign of rain and many people suddenly deciding that it was time to ride the festival. People started arriving at the football clubrooms at 7:15 and it was all on with approximately 80 late entries rolling up on the day. A very busy time for the ladies at the registration desks, and timing people assigning chips and numbers.
With 20 odd registered for the Sprockets NZ Jo Allen Memorial classic race the handicappers job was not too bad. The first two riders were away at 8.30 and with only two riders they had nowhere to hide from the weather conditions. The A grade riders group were last away at 8:58, they must have been feeling comfortable, because as they left as they were all chatting to each other. The eventual winner had a good lead coming down from Kimbolton but the chasing group made some inroads across the flats to be only a few hundred metres behind at the line. Josh Page was not only the first across the line but also had the fastest time of 2:07:23, congratulations.
The next off was the 90 km Morgan Property Advisors ride with almost a just under 80 riders lining up for the start at 9:30. Once the lead car pulled away the pace was on with the field splitting up into a leading group and many smaller groups chasing all the way. The trip across the top towards CrossHills was damp and misty with everyone grateful for all the layers they were wearing. The temperature at Kimbolton on the way back was down to 4 degrees without the wind chill. Coming back across the Chelty straights was made considerably harder by the blustery crosswind and many small groups working together to protect those who needed a break. A small group of three time trialed in for line honours with nothing between them on the line, well done Jacob Seivwright. the rest of the field came across the line in groups of 5 to 8 with Ken Young completing the distance on his single speed.
The Bulls Medical Centre 20 km started at 10:00 with 20 odd riders including a recumbent fronting to the line with half being children accompanied by parents. Two lead cars went out with this group to make sure they got onto the cycle lane and over the bridge safely, unfortunately a couple of the boys made contact with each other and the bollards, no injuries but they got out of the cold wind and rode in the sag wagon around the course. The field was held up by a train at the crossing for a time before get into Campbell’s Line. Kyle Hoskin got away from the others before the turn into Taonui and lead the field in by 6 minutes in a time of 38:50 congratulations.
Next away was Property Brokers 50 km ride with 40 fronting to the line and off into the increasingly cold and blustery conditions with the odd skif of rain to make the ride more challenging. A small group formed at the front and stayed together right back to the finish line with five riders battling it out for the win. George Jackson held on to take it in a time of 1:29:56 well done.
The prize giving followed at 1:35 and it was all cleaned up by 2:45.
Austin Smith on behalf of the Organising Committee