Fast racing and tactics played a big part in the fourth race of the Trust House team’s series, raced on a new course at Carrington, near Carterton on Sunday.
Riders started and headed to Mangatarere and Haringa Roads, navigating the twists and turns via Belvedere and Cobben Roads. Despite some challenges with crosswinds, all riders embraced and applauded the new circuit, which proved to be conducive to fast-paced and demanding racing across all three categories.
Category two was once again dominated by West Coast North Island [WCNI], with Chris Hansen winning the 78km race in a time of two hours and two minutes, followed by teammate Jack Padega and Wheelwork’s team rider Jack Polley in third place, a second behind.
In the category three race, the peloton maintained a blistering pace throughout the entirety of the first of three laps. There were numerous attempts to break away, but these were futile until the halfway mark of the second lap, on the challenging false flat of Hinau Gully Road, when a decisive move unfolded. A group of 12 riders, led by the series frontrunner Jeremy Salmond, successfully broke away, establishing a one-minute gap from the pursuing bunch.
In the last 25km, three riders, Latham Collett and Patrick Calver from Pedal Project and Chris Harris [Bike Manawatu] team, asserted their dominance and built a substantial three-minute lead over the chasing peloton. Calver struggled to maintain the pace, allowing Collett to outpace Harris in the sprint.
Harris is the new leader in category three, marking a significant development in the standings with one race to go in the series.
Category four unfolded as a highly dynamic and spirited race, highlighted by the standout performance of winner Dan Mackay from Team Tank Guy in Manawatu. However, the local riders from the Tararua Builders team also made their mark on the day, securing the next three positions in a thrilling dash to the finish line.
Event organisers have plans to revisit the same route on Saturday, January 13, for stage four of the international Mitre 10 MEGA Masterton Cycle Classic.
The final round of the team series will be held On Sunday, December 2, on the Whangaehu Valley, Bideford Road course.
Category Two – Chris Hansen [WCNI]- 2:02:04 – 1, Jack Padega [WCNI] 2, Jack Polley [Wheelworks] 3. Category Leader – Hansen; Team Leader – West Coast North Island
Category Three – Latham Collett [Pedal Project] – 2:13:56 – 1, Chris Harris [Bike Manawatu] 2, Patrick Calver [Pedal Project] 3. Category Leader – Harris; Team Leader – Pedal Project
Category Four – Dan MacKay [Team Tank Guy] – 2:20:50 – 1, Derek De Zwart [Tararua Builders] 2, Dave Drummond [Tararua Lost Boys] 3. Category Leader – Andrew Campbell [Pedal Project]; Team Leader – Team Tank Guy.