By John Flynn
Sporting one of the highest calibre team rosters yet to feature at a Two Wheel Promotions event, the classy Team Merida lived up to expectation, claiming both the four person teams category and the overall race win in Saturday's Race Face 12 Hour at Kooralbyn.
Boosted by the inclusion of in-form Gold Coaster Davey Whitney (winner of the recent MTBA Sunshine Series Round) and former national club road champion Tony Mann, the early favourites for overall honours produced a performance on par with expectation, in what turned out to be an ideal day for off-road bike racing.
Freshly returned from international duties at China's Tour of Qinghai Lake where he was racing with the FRF Couriers Caravello Team (U.C.I. Oceania Tour), Mann showed he could handle the mountain bike just as capably as the road bike and was ably supported by Whitney, Jodie Zerbst and David Newnham.
"It's an awesome concept, I've never done a twelve hour before, this is just so much fun," a relaxed Mann said at race end.
For results, photos and a complete race report, click here.