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Seventh Heaven: Mouat captures one more crown

Lesley Mouat, left, and Belinda Fuller celebrate winning their medals at the national road cycling championships in Timaru. PHOTO/SUPPLIED


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Two Masterton cyclists won medals at the national road cycling Championships at Timaru on Saturday.

St Matthews Collegiate chaplain Lesley Mouat won her seventh national title, riding away with the Masters’ Six [60-64] age group title by 45 seconds and Belinda Fuller won the bronze medal in the Masters’ Three [45-49] age group.

Both riders were delighted with their performances given the tough nature of the 21km course, which included one very tough climb, with a gradient of up to 15 per cent, steeper than the renowned Admiral Hill climb
in Wairarapa.

The rolling course also featured two very fast descents. The races consisted of three laps.

Mouat was over the moon with her victory.

“It was really hard work on a difficult course. I went into it a bit under prepared, so I’m absolutely delighted.”

Mouat’s race was a composite race of two age groups and she said that benefited her.

“At the top of the gnarly hill on the first circuit I got on to the back of a bunch in the younger age group and I was able to work with them. It was only the last 7km into a strong head wind that I got stuck by myself and it was really hard work.”

Mouat finished the 63km in a time of two hours, six minutes and 44 seconds – 46sec clear of second-placed Jane Sweeney [Marsden].

Mouat last won a national title in 2017. She was second in last year’s road race held in Wairarapa.

Fuller was “totally stoked” with her bronze medal.

“It was really tough, a lot tougher than I thought.”

Fuller rode much of the race alone after being dropped by the two leading riders near the end of the first lap.

“I caught up with another one of the girls, but then she pulled out because she was sick, so I was left on my own for the rest of the race.”

She puts her success down to the support she gets. “I’m really very lucky. It’s very time consuming and I have a very supportive family, and it’s been great to prove all the hard work of my coach Eddie Kuipers.”

Fuller’s time of 2:02.07 was 4.41 behind the leading pair, Katie Richards [Kapiti] and Penny Pawson [Counties Manukau] who fought out a sprint finish, with Richards taking the honours.

Fuller has only returned to race riding in the past two years.

Her next major target is to defend her age group title in the K2, a 200km race over the roads of Coromandel Peninsula in late October.

Seven other cyclists from Athletics and Cycling Masterton also competed at the championships.

Caleb Roberts finished 13th in the Under-15 boys, and his brother, Finn, was 34th in the Under-17 boys.

Derek Roberts was 15th and Kuipers was 23rd in the men’s 45-49 road race, while Jeff Saywell was 23rd in the men’s 50-54 road race.

Peter James was eighth in the 60-64 men’s road race. Rex Dowding had two top 10 placings in the 70-74 age group. He was fifth in the 15km time trial and ninth in the road race.

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