Louttit Takes out Summer Series! Final Round Report
A warm still morning welcomed everyone to the last round of the Summer Series. With many riders away at either Interclub or holidays it was great to see 15 eager riders line up. After 7 rounds there were still 10 riders with a mathematical chance of winning the series, especially with the double-points on offer for the first 5 placings.
Off limit Ben Phillips and Andrew Crawford started from the very generous mark of 10 and a half minutes – essentially a 5km head-start over the 26km course! Next to go at second-limit were Dennis Louttit, Steve Doidge, Geoff Golden and Charlie Baldry who started off 4 and a half minutes.
Third limit consisted of Tim Meares, Cootamundra’s strongest rider Rod Fergus, Brent Louttit and in-form Tony Snell. Unknown to the handicapper, the second-limit group in front were up the road waiting for this group in support of Brent, who stood a chance to clean up the series!
As chopping block headed off a mysterious breeze had sprung up much to handicapper Peter Rees’ surprise. Anthony Dean, James Watson and Tim Webster bore the brunt of the wind and lived up to their name, fracturing and getting caught early by scratch. Back on scratch Steve Franklin and Hamish Nott headed off as a two-man-band into the headwind that was only getting stronger.
At the turn limit still lead ahead of the big group of second and third limit, with scratch catching Webster who was all that was left of block. It was always going to be a hard task for 2 riders to catch the big bunch with a tailwind home, but Franklin and Nott fell 40 seconds short of the mark in 39 minutes 55.
Up front The Fox was driving hard on the front for Phillips as these two defied the pack with some great teamwork. Ben took the win and the double points but the fight for the series was on in earnest behind. With Series leader Tim Webster out of contention this brought Brent Louttit and Tony Snell into the mix and they didn’t disappoint.
Fergus, Meares, Baldry, Doidge and father Dennis were burying themselves in pain to get Brent up for the series win with Snell hanging in there in case any points were on offer. In the final sprint Tony eventually nudged Brent out of second with Rod Fergus and Geoff Golden taking out the minor placings.
The double-points round made for an exciting finish to the series with the top 3 separated by just 2 points. Brent Louttit, who has made a comeback to cycling over the summer, saw his hard work and long training miles rewarded. Brent started 7 of the 8 races proving consistency was the key as the top 3 placegetters only missed 2 races between them!
Final standings were Brent Louttit 51 points, Tim Webster 50 points, Ben Phillips 49 points. Special mention to James Watson who won the best ‘young’ rider competition!
A big thank you to our Peter Rees for handicapping the series, Tony ‘The Fox’ Manning and Al Moston for their commissaire work throughout, and the many other supporters and helpers who ensure things run safe and smoothly each Sunday morning. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. Also a thank you to the residents and drivers on Berthong Road for their courtesy each Sunday morning which helps keep the riders safe.