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Aaron Moffatt's Tour of Bright

Race reports often get out of hand, so here's a short summary of the weekend probably missing heaps of stuff.

Stage 1 – The Time Trial (TT)
An intense atmosphere, heaps of equipment, lots of wind cheating, and lots of riders. TT bikes are pretty much the standard. The TT was on a short 13km course with a formidable hill around the halfway point. For myself this was probably going to be my strongest event, being a bit on the heavy side and what I had spent the most time training for. Fortunately Kelly Linden leant me her TT bike, and Maddy Wright lent me the super fast wheels you see pictured. Actually pretty much everything I had was borrowed. My TT went pretty well, finishing 31st in my grade, however I wasn't completely satisfied with it because, I guess, you always want to go faster. Reflecting I think I rode the first section out to the roundabout too fast (I mean hard, you can never ride too fast!) with the speedo at times sitting on 50km/h, but you can't help get excited I suppose, it's the Tour of Bright!


Stage 2 – The Gaps Loop - 90km.
I can never understand the Tour of Bright. The bunch rolls along at 40km/h+ and I sit there thinking, who the hell is doing all this work and why? It's like sitting on the back of a Tuesday night ride for 80kms with steep hills thrown in. I had my plan for the day, save everything for the 20 minute+ effort up Tawonga gap. Rosewhite was the first real test of the day. This year Rosewhite seemed a lot flatter than previous years, I think we just hit it that hard that you didn't notice the hill as much and were able to get some draft. Even on Rosewhite, plenty of people were happy to set the tempo for the bunch.

We made our way across the rolling flat on our way towards Tawonga, again, the bunch quite content to sit on 40km/h. The bunch was extremely tense, we knew what was coming, a few near misses and dodgy maneuvering did not helping things. We passed the sprint point in Tawonga which is always frantic because it's a downhill sprint at 70km/h. The bunch mostly together now. A final fight for position as we pass through the feed zone. We took the right hander, and the climb started. My legs were tired, but I kept reminding myself that everyone else’s legs are tired too! I forced myself to ride with the bunch for as long as I could. After a few km's though I had to let the bunch go, or more realistically, they dropped me. It started raining about halfway up Tawonga, but you really don't care at that stage, in fact it was actually kinda nice. I finished the stage midfield in 30th. To quote Nath Tooley from seeing me cross the line, You didn't look good, but you were going fast!

Stage 3 – Mt Hotham
Rumours were storms were coming and if they did, the Mount Hotham Stage would be shortened for safety. They weren't wrong! The storms and bad weather came and we got the news Sunday morning that the stage would be shortened. Everyone was REAL disappointed. Not really, I was actually really grateful. However, the shortened stage would make it a very intense one. Rain, stress and a lot of intensity in the bunch. The bunch didn't want to let anything go early on. Well actually they did, but then someone would chase it down really hard. A few times I dropped the wheel in front of me because the bunch was just going that hard. This was not a great sign, but I reminded myself that most people probably had bad legs too. Eventually just before Harrietville the bunch sat up completely and the break was up the road. The guy who was second on GC wasn't that happy though. He's like "uh, hey guys... That guy up the road won the stage yesterday". Everyone cracked up laughing because, well, we didn't care all that much. Nobody was interested in wasting energy before climbing Hotham. The guys 1st and 2nd on GC were forced to ride on the front of our bunch to limit losses, which was actually quite impressive. We rode through Harrietville, made the left hander onto the climb and it began! I expected a much more furious start to the climb than what we had. The fury came however a few k's up the road when the GC guys started digging in. You'd think drafting doesn't make much difference on such steep hills, but it really does. It might no longer be 30%, but potentially 10%, much less noticeable. I hung with the bunch until the Meg when, pretty much... yeah... I got dropped.

I was fortunate to find a few guys to work with on the way up. This is critical on Mount Hotham because there are some undulating sections half way up where you can really work together. Our little bunch actually turned into a bigish group with some absolute stompers in it! So strong I found myself only just hanging on. I knew however that if I got dropped, I'd lose minutes!

The 1km sign couldn't come quick enough! Our group pushed up the climb and finished roughly together. 35th On the final stage.

Stage 4- (The Secret Stage) - Now you won't find this stage on the program and if you ask the cyclists, they probably won't admit to it, but anyone who's ridden back from Harrietville to Bright after stage 3 knows what I'm talking about. It's kind of a secret shared between the bike riders who dare to make the venture... or just couldn't get a lift back. This stage can be one of the hardest because the legs are already smashed. The speed is often as fast if not faster than the racing. It's the last opportunity for people to show just how strong they are, and finally a chance for the riders on the heavier side to impress! Every year it seems this stage gets faster! Myself and Peachy found a good group to ride back with. We were flying back at probably 35km/h. Then a guy went flying past at well over 40km/h. My thoughts were that he was going close to 50km/h. Then another guy, then another, now we've got 3 guys chopping off just in front of us. So everyone in the bunch decides to jump on. It starts raining. We're now single file, can't see where we are going because the spray off the wheel in front,  no brakes because it was so wet, completely saturated, sitting on what was a bunch of now 5 guys rolling through monster turns. Matt Tooley had left 5 minutes before us from Harrietville, we caught him just down the road, as we rolled past I yelled out to him Yeah buddyyyyyy! I was quite happy that we had caught the express to take us home. His bunch jumped on and we had a massive train rolling back in. Then the first attack came! One guy launched it off the front of our bunch which was already travelling at over 40km/h. This guy was ridiculously strong, because 5 guys chopping off couldn't bring him back. He stayed out there all the way to Bright, a very impressive effort. There was one question that came to mind as we rolled into town though. Why? I guess I will never understand it, but it's part of the fun I suppose.

Congrats to everyone who raced! Albury Wodonga Representatives included:

Declan Gregory, Matt Hamblin, Angus Harris, Taryn Heather, Ryan Allen, Stephen Damm, Jacob Hanna, Errol Flemming, Brad Piestch and Matt Tooley. Sorry if I forgot anyone.

Results can be found here:

Special thanks to Lyn Heritage & Geoff Damm for lending me jackets when I was freezing on the top of the mountains. Also to Johnny Guerin for letting me in the coffee van to keep warm! Can make a good coffee! Also thanks to my Swanny's Maddy Wright, Danielle Ruedin. And thanks to Neil, Kelly & Maddy for the wind cheating gear. Also thanks to Aaron Last at the Full Cycle for making the gears and brakes work seamlessly all weekend!

 I encourage everyone to check out the tour of bright next year, such a cool race, spectacular scenery and great atmosphere!

Also a special mention to The Jolly Blue Giant AKA Neil Van Der Ploeg who won the Launceston Crit last night. Crashed twice and still won the sprint! Well done Neil!


Lavington Charity Track Carnival

Lavington Square presents:

The 5th Annual Lavington Charity Track Carnival
Saturday 13th December - 5.00pm
Lavington velodrome, Pearsall Street Lavington
Minimum $1000 prizemoney

Once again the Lavington Track Carnival will take place in December, at the Lavington Velodrome. The Carnival is now in it's 5th year, and this year will be held in aid of local charity, The Carevan Foundation - supporting those in need.

All the action will kick off Saturday evening, 13th of December, at 5pm with the Lavington 5km Motorpace Championship. The night will feature events for juniors and seniors as well as an invitational celebrity event!

Feature events include:
Lavington Square 2000m Lavington Wheelrace
Carevan Foundation Keiran
Peter Benton Memorial Juvenile 1000m Handicap
Fogarty's Jewellers 1000m Handicap
Bill Washington Memorial "Aces Scratch Race"

SPECTATORS: Bring the family, friends, a chair, a picnic rug, the esky and settled own and watch some great track cycling! Entry by Gold Coin Donation - all proceeds to The Carevan Foundation.

CYCLISTS: Gates open at 4pm. Warm up from 4.30pm. First race will start at 5.15pm.

PLEASE FORWARD YOUR ENTRY AGE AND CA LICENCE NUMBER TO washingtoncyclisme@hotmail.com or 0497999838

U17 Riders are eligible to ride senior events if they wish. Please nominate so on your entry.

Minimum of 4 races per rider.

The Carevan Foundation will be at the event with food, BBQ and drinks available for sale. All proceeds to The Carevan Foundation.

Come along and support local cycling and have a ride, spectate, bring a friend, and support a worthy local charity!

For further information, contact Brendan on 0260414181.


List of events:
Lavington 5km Open Motorpace Championship
Carevan Motorpace Heat 1
Carevan Motorpace Heat 2
Junior Scratch Race
Junior Scratch Race
Junior Scratch Race
Fogarty's Jewellers 1000m Handicap Heats
Junior Wheelrace Heats
Lavington 2000m Wheelrace Heats
Invitational Events
Carevan Foundation Keiran Final
Junior Wheelrace Final
Peter Benton Memorial Juvenile Handicap Final
Lavington 2000m Wheelrace Final
Junior Scratch Race
Junior Scratch Race
Junior Scratch Race
Lavington 3 Mile Scratch Race
Bill Washington Memorial 30 Lap Aces Scratch Race


Bended Elbow ITT Series

Bended Elbow ITT series – starting Thursday 22 January 2015

How fast can you do 10 miles (16 km)

The Brits love a ten mile time trial.  That’s how Chris Boardman got his first race, and riders like Bradley Wiggins built their tour winning riding.

So in Albury Wodonga, this summer we have the Bended Elbow British Ale House 10 mile time trial series.  While there will be no British ales on the start line, there will be plenty of the suffering the brits seem to love as you try and pump out your fastest ten mile time. 

Given this is Albury Wodonga, we can call it 16 km.  So what is a good time?  For our newest members just starting in the sport the challenge will be to crack the 30 minutes or average 32km/hr.  Those up and coming riders who are getting used to a bit of suffering should be able to beat 27 minutes or 35.5 km/hr.  For those who love driving a bunch in a big gear or have the full TT set up, the magical 24 minutes or 40 km/hr average should definitely be in your sights, if not faster.  The questions will be how much can you improve over summer, how many riders can go under 24 minutes, and what will be your fastest time.

While all TT courses are different, to give you some benchmarks consider these times.  Bradley Wiggins won the UK 10 mile nationals in 2011 with a time of 19:14.  The UK record is held by a Michael Hutchinson in 18:07, and for women a Julia Shaw did the 10 miles in 20:31 in 2010

To get you motivated and ensure fast times we have picked a quick and flat course going out and back on the low road (officially known as the Old Barnawartha Rd).

To help you out, you can get some tips from Chris Boardman, the master himself.

Bended Elbow summer TT series details

  • Thursday evenings unless it’s properly raining or 39 degrees or hotter. If unsure about the weather check the AWCC or Bended Elbow cycling team facebook pages (We are doing Thursday evening as that is when the commissaires are available)
  • First TT is Thursday 22 January 
  • Final TT is March 12.
  • Start on the low road (Old Barnawartha Rd, about 1 km west of the Hume Freeway intersection) for 16 km of fun (8 km out and 8 km back)
  • Registration from 5:45 pm
  • First rider departs at 6:15 pm with the rest in 30 second intervals
  • Normal Time Trial rules apply. Eg no drafting, standing start etc.  You must give way to traffic when turning
  • Timetrial bikes and aero gear or plain old road racing bikes all welcome
  • New riders most definitely welcome with the option of a three ride licence
  • Entry is $5 for seniors, $2 for juniors, with entry fees going to support the Bended Elbow youth riders to attend some big races in 2015.


Race Course

Start – Marshall Area