The Altitude Cycling and Fitness Round Two Team Time Trial course is one of the hardest in the country. Aptly sponsored, with riders gaining 414m of altitude in just over 16km the non-traditional course presents a variety of tactical dilemmas as teams chase both the stage win and overall classifications. The bigger teams would need to work out which riders to spare on the rolling roads, in order to effectively launch them up the wall of Stentifords. The smaller teams would have to work harmoniously to make sure they end up with three riders capable of getting up the climb together.
Cat 2 Men
First off were the CAT 2 Men. Rocket Racing took the opening stage with through Josiah Whittaker, but the team was not built with gravity-defying tactics in mind. They did have one climber on the list in Sam Medlin, and he did impress on the final climb posting the quickest time for the category. Unfortunately for Medlin, the time was taken on the third rider across the line, meaning that GCC & Friends would be able to pounce to take the win. Whittaker would finish just 12 seconds behind his teammate in Medlin, and with Lewis Denver would take 2nd on the stage, and the retain his Scody Leaders Jersey. After missing Round One, Van D’am Racing p/b Butterfields would make their Cat 2 debut, and edged out pre-race favourite Norwood Cycling club by just 0.8 of a second for third. This proves that the throw for the line is an important skill to have – even when the road is getting close to 20%!
Cat 2 Women
Butterfields Racing put in a dominant performance in the opening round, taking the top 4 placings for the stage. With superstar Meg Lemon sitting out the round, it provided an opportunity for another team to reset the equation. Unfortunately for Team Envirosport – Titan Performance an untimely puncture to Meriel Custance would see them down to three riders much earlier than they would have liked, leaving them to miss the top step to Butterfields by 8 seconds. Cycling South Australia Women’s Development Project would take thirds, deputing their fresh new threads from Machines for Freedom! Alice Jolly would inherit the leader’s jersey from teammate Lemon, maintaining Butterfields ownership of the Scody Jersey!
Cat 2 Masters
Somewhat surprisingly for such a touch course, Cat 2 Masters continued the trend of teams finishing in very similar times. Although none were as close as PACC white and Transitions Divewear (just 0.1 seconds difference for 5th/6th), only 45 seconds would separate first and third. Team Envirosport-Titan Performance would put their second team on the podium, with their master’s team taking third, behind Norwood Cycling Club in second, and team Scyon taking the win by just under 5 seconds, and the 12kg of Lenswood apples that were on offer! Although Matt Sparnon’s USG Cycling Team finished fourth, he did enough to hold onto his overall lead but will have a battle on his hand with the NCC paring of Christinat and Hollamby biting at his heels.
Cat 1 Masters
Cat 1 Masters saw a shakeup in Round 1 with an influx of new teams putting a lot of pressure on defending champion Tim Decker (Team Prochem), who would miss out on wearing the leaders jersey for the first time in two years, with Zero Friction Cycling’s JP Jacobs claiming the Scody Leaders Jersey after Round One. Zero Friction would make it two from two, taking the win in the biggest margin of the day, but even then, it was just over 45 seconds. Chesser Chemicals edged out Decker’s Prochem by 17 seconds. Bother Chesser and Prochem played a numbers game, with both finishing with five riders, meaning that Jacobs will have a lot of riders to watch out for coming into the Copper Coast Cup.
Cycling Australia dominated round one, but there would be upset by the Cycling Australia academy who would take out the round by just over 30 seconds. The academy team of de Ritter, Plouffe, Martin-Wallace and Edwards had a numerical disadvantage, but the close-knit team worked well together to put Plouffe onto equal points as Amy Cure (Cycling Australia). Gravier Cycling club welcomed Victoria Barry into their line up for her first Super Series round, and the addition of Barry’s climbing talent saw the team take third, with Prochem having to settle for fourth. With both the Cycling Australia teams expecting only intermittent racing from now until the end of the series due to international track commitments – both Plouffe and Cure will need to fight to hold the lead through to the end, and the opportunity remains for the other teams to steal the series away.
After taking first and second on Round One, the Cycling Australia Academy riders were going to struggle to continue their momentum with only four riders on the start line, with the majority of their competition fielding full teams of eight riders. With just over a minute separating the first eight teams, there would be no room for any mistakes. After finishing second in 2018, Tonsley village bettered their previous time be three seconds, to take the win, and put Jack Sutton into the series, 4 points clear of the incumbent leader in Drizners, and a further 2 points away from Glasspool (Oliver’s Real Food Racing), Tristan Saunders(Butterfields – Appselec p/b Van D’am Racing) and Connor Leahy (CA Academy). Saunders’ Butterfields-Appselec team edged Glasspool’s Oliver’s Real Food Racing by 1.1 seconds to take second on the stage, and Olivers in Third.
Cycling South Australia would like to thank Altitude Cycling and Fitness for sponsoring the round, and all of our commissaires, volunteers and medical for making the event run so smoothly.
Racing resumes in three weeks time at the Copper Coast Cup!
All results can be found HERE.