Greg Henderson (Mazda) claimed victory in the second race of the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic, to put the Mazda team in the box seat on overall classification despite Graeme Brown (Urban Hotels) maintaining his overall lead. Henderson held off Chris Sutton (Skilled/Lowe Farms) in a two man sprint, with the two the only surviving members from a late five-man break.
"I slipped to the back a bit and had a rest, then I saw a move go after a really hard section, I had to dig deep to get across to that," said Henderson. "I was lucky enough to be fastest across the line.
"I wasn’t too bothered [if the move survived], it’s one of those things, you have to take the gamble," he said. "If you give it everything and you don’t win then it’s a wasted effort being out there. But I was confident as we had Robbie [McEwen] in the back, so if he had the opportunity then he could have won. We were riding for Mazda today and it’s nice to come away with a win."
Behind Henderson and Sutton was a close contest between race leader Brown and Daniel Braunsteins (Team Degani Cycling Café). While a late bike throw looked to put Brown in third place, officials confirmed after reviewing video footage that Braunsteins had claimed the final podium place.
Brown’s fourth place was enough to ensure he maintained the overall race lead, but the Rabobank professional admitted he’ll have to review his strategy for the next two races. While Sutton is closest overall with 17 points to Brown’s 19, Mazda pose a big threat with two cards to play in McEwen and Henderson, both now on 14 points each.
Sutton showed his intentions for the stage, held on a more difficult circuit than the previous day’s race, early by joining a four man break on the second lap. That group bulged as Matthew Hayman (Mazda) and Jack Bobridge (SASI TeamO’Grady) were amongst several to join the effort.
The break was short lived however as a surge for the day’s first prime consumed the group. Tom Scully (John Trevorrow Cycles/Chifley Hotel) was victorious in the sprint ahead of Hayman and Cameron Peterson (NSWIS), with the trio’s charge so forceful the peloton was forced to react to the risk of a breakaway.
A group of 14 then evolved, with Bobridge active once more in the creation, but it was brought back from a 17 second advantage once too many threatening riders had joined. Then, as race commentator Phil Liggett questioned co-commentator Dave McKenzie’s belief a break could stay away, a group of five moved off the front.
The group consisted of Henderson, Braunsteins, Sutton, Matt Wilson (Jayco VIS) and Mark O’Brien (Prime Estate/The Freedom Machine). That breakaway proved definitive with Sutton and Henderson managing to resist the peloton’s attempt to chase the duo down.
An incident between Brown and Baden Cooke (Skilled/Lowe Farms) in the first turn with two laps remaining caused much inquiry after the race, however the race leader was quick to play it down. Brown said while the incident "just wasn’t cricket" that he didn’t consider it a big deal.
"My team was riding to try and bring that break back, he had a team-mate in the front, and he just put himself in front in the corner and put the brakes on. It cost our momentum, we wouldn’t have caught them anyway, but it may have made the difference you never know," said Brown. "It’s not a big deal, at all. I don’t want it to blow out in the press. It’s not a big deal at all."
"Graeme's team were chasing and they were starting to splinter, these guys were getting tired. As they were coming into the corner, I rolled in front of them under brakes. He knew if I was in front, the pace would slow down because I had my rider up the road," Cooke explained.
"So he's basically come to the front and tried to run me into the barrier. In the space of 500 metres, they've nearly knocked me off twice. I might be trying to slow down the pace to help my man, but I'm not endangering anyone's life or trying to put anyone into the barriers. It's very amusing to me that he's waving his hand and yelling and screaming and trying to put me into the barriers."
Race doesn’t follow Honda’s plan, Gilmore victorious anyway
Rochelle Gilmore (Honda Dream Team) admitted the team’s plan heading into today’s race didn’t come to fruition, but that didn’t stop her from taking a second stage victory and extend her overall Jayco Bay Cycling Classic lead. After comfortably winning the opening stage, Gilmore was chased to the line by Belinda Goss (Pitcher Partners), who missed the opening criterium on Saturday.
"It’s very satisfying," said Gilmore. "It’s very hard to read a race some days because all the teams have been able to go home and analyse what form the other riders have been in, then they make their strategy and plan for the day. We have no idea what the other teams are going to do so it’s a bit of a gamble.
"We were actually hoping that we could get one of my team-mates up the road today to have a chance to win themselves, but the race was just too fast and nothing was allowed to go," added Gilmore.
Goss missed yesterday’s opening stage as she rested while travelling to the event. Goss has been competing in Tasmania at the annual Christmas Carnivals since Boxing Day, prompting her to take one day away from racing to recover.
"I got a little bit stuck in there myself, I couldn’t hit out, so I had to wait to create a gap which left my sprint a little bit too late," said Goss. "It was close at the finish, so hopefully I can get it right later in the week."
"I raced for seven days straight down in Tasmania so I think I just needed yesterday to travel back to Melbourne and just refresh for the next three days of racing. I think it was the right choice, otherwise with 11 straight days of racing I probably wouldn’t be going that well."
Amanda Spratt (Jayco AIS) and Joanna Wall (Mazda) controlled the opening laps as the women worked into a rhythm.
Gilmore showed her intention to take the sprinter’s jersey, in addition to maintaining the race lead, early when she vied for the first intermediate sprint. However Gilmore was only able to take second, with Jenny MacPherson (Race) taking the win despite backing off before spotting a late charge from Gilmore.
A four person move went clear after the first sprint but was brought back quickly as the second sprint approached. Ashlee Ankudinoff (Jayco VIS/NSWIS) won the second sprint from MacPherson and Peta Mullens (Honda Dream Team), while defending champion Kirsty Broun (Jayco AIS) was forced to stop and change a wheel.
Emma Mackie (Race) tried her luck with a solo break as officials signalled five laps remaining. Mackie’s move didn’t stick, a fate also suffered by solo attempts by Wall and MacPherson in the closing laps.
Ankudinoff suffered a mechanical with three laps remaining, but officials allowed the rider to rest and rejoin the peloton on the same lap with two remaining. While Gilmore thought that would give her fellow New South Welshwoman an advantage towards the end, but with the rhythm broken Ankudinoff wasn’t able to capitalise on the situation.
After seeing off the challenge from Goss, Gilmore was delighted with the race’s outcome. "Going for a series win makes it difficult to go for a race win, because sometimes you have to sacrifice a race in order to take the series," said Gilmore. "But today we won the race and we’re still leading the series, so it’s fantastic."
|1||Greg Henderson (Mazda)||12||pts|
|2||Chris Sutton (Skilled/Lowe Farms)||10|
|3||Daniel Braunsteins (Degani Cycling Cafe)||8|
|4||Graeme Brown (Urban)||7|
|5||Robbie McEwen (Mazda)||6|
|6||Baden Cooke (Skilled/Lowe Farms)||5|
|7||Matthew Goss (Degani Cycling Cafe)||4|
|8||Joel Pearson (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||3|
|9||Koen de Kort (O2 Networks)||2|
|10||Nicholas Walker (Degani Cycling Cafe)||1|
|1||Graeme Brown (Urban)||19||pts|
|2||Chris Sutton (Skilled/Lowe Farms)||17|
|3||Greg Henderson (Mazda)||14|
|4||Matthew Goss (Degani Cycling Cafe)||14|
|5||Robbie McEwen (Mazda)||14|
|6||Joel Pearson (Genesys Wealth Advisers)||9|
|7||Daniel Braunsteins (Degani Cycling Cafe)||8|
|8||Baden Cooke (Skilled/Lowe Farms)||8|
|9||Rico Rodgers (Total Rush)||5|
|10||Leigh Howard (Jayco VIS)||4|
|1||Graeme Brown (Urban)||6||pts|
|2||Mathew Hayman (Mazda)||4|
|3||Degani Cycling Cafe||23|
|5||Genesys Wealth Systems||9|
|1||Rochelle Gilmore (Honda)||12||pts|
|2||Belinda Goss (Pitcher Partners)||10|
|3||Chloe Hosking (MB Cycles)||8|
|4||Megan Dunn (Jayco VIS/NSWIS)||7|
|5||Kirsty Broun (Jayco AIS)||6|
|6||Isabella King (Plan B Racing WA)||5|
|7||Nicole Whitburn (Unattached/Vic)||4|
|8||Peta Mullens (Honda)||3|
|9||Melissa Hoskins (Plan B Racing WA)||2|
|10||Emma Mackie (Race)||1|
|1||Rochelle Gilmore (Honda)||24||pts|
|2||Chloe Hosking (MB Cycles)||18|
|3||Kirsty Broun (Jayco AIS)||14|
|4||Megan Dunn (Jayco VIS/NSWIS)||13|
|5||Belinda Goss (Pitcher Partners)||10|
|6||Peta Mullens (Honda)||10|
|7||Isabella King (Plan B Racing WA)||10|
|8||Nicole Whitburn (Unattached/Vic)||7|
|9||Rowena Fry (Degani)||4|
|10||Ashlee Ankudinoff (Jayco VIS/NSWIS)||2|
|10||Melissa Hoskins (Plan B Racing WA)||2|
|1||Rochelle Gilmore (Honda)||7||pts|
|2||Ashlee Ankudinoff (Jayco VIS/NSWIS)||6|
|3||Jenny MacPherson (Race)||5|
|4||Peta Mullens (Honda)||4|
|5||Plan B Racing WA||12|
|1||Po Hung Wu (NSWIS Team 2)||12||pts|
|2||Jarrod Moroni (Unattached/Vic)||10|
|3||Ethan Kimmice (NSWIS Team 1)||8|
|4||Craig Hutton (Trevorrow Cycles/Chifley Hotel)||7|
|5||Jacob Sutherland (Total Rush)||6|
|6||Mitchell Benson (Unattached/WA)||5|
|7||Joshua Carlson (Total Rush)||4|
|8||Tom Last (Unattached/Great Britain)||3|
|9||Steven Martin (Unattached/Vic)||2|
|10||Mark Fenner (Total Rush)||1|
|1||Mitchell Benson (Unattached/WA)||17||pts|
|2||Ethan Kimmice (NSWIS Team 1)||14|
|3||Po Hung Wu (NSWIS Team 2)||12|
|4||Steven Martin (Unattached/Vic)||12|
|5||Jarrod Moroni (Unattached/Vic)||10|
|6||Oliver Le Grice (Degani Bakery Cafe)||8|
|7||Antony Dimitrovski (Unattached/NSW)||7|
|7||Craig Hutton (Trevorrow Cycles/Chifley Hotel)||7|
|9||Jacob Sutherland (Total Rush)||6|
|10||Mark Flood (Unattached/Vic)||5|
|1||Mitchell Benson (Unattached/WA)||5||pts|
|2||Neil van der Ploeg (Unattached/Vic)||4|
|1||NSWIS Team 1||17||pts|
|3||NSWIS Team 2||12|
|4||Degani Bakery Cafe||8|
|5||John Trevorrow Cycles/Chifley Hotel||7|