z12.3 Christmas Bleat

Post date: Dec 17, 2015 12:8:28 PM

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the 'Vets'

The President and all the hardworking Committee of the ACT Vets Cycling Club wish all our members and their families a merry Christmas and a happy and safe New Year and indeed for all of 2016.

We would especially like to thank those members who supported the club so well by volunteering as Race Directors, traffic marshals, first aiders, etc and for the little things like helping pack up the van after races. We could not have had such a full calendar of varied racing without your support, your camaraderie, your generosity and simply your keenness for riding and racing bikes, whether in fair weather or foul. That's why we all love to 'get out there' and to organise and compete in such great and friendly events.

The Club collectively celebrated the end of the year with the running of the annual Christmas Wheel Race on Tuesday out at Stromlo Forest Park. It was another very well attended and hard fought event - both to get into the final ride and the wheel race itself when some four grades made up the first five places. Thanks to Barb Bayliss for organising such tasty after-race snacks. We also presented the winners of the 2015 winter-season points score to the most consistent and successful riders in each grade by men and woman as well as the prestigeous ‘Club Person of the Year’ awarded to Allan Bontjer in recognition for his tireless work this year in revitalising and renewing our database, the Rider Management System (RMS). Well done Allan!

Thats it for races in 2015, but look out for the notice on the traditional Boxing Day Recovery Ride for those staying in Canberra (8.00am start from the Jollimont Centre). This ride is a social one and is designed for riders of all ability with stops at the tops of hills and short turn-around options designed to bring all riders back into Civic for a well earned coffee as we relax, chat and wonder about the folk fronting up for yet more shopping).

Finally, we all look forward to seeing you out on the road, at the tracks having healthy fun and great competition in our races in 2016. Long live the ACT Vets Cycling Club and long may its members partake in our beautiful sport.

Safe Riding!

Alex O'Shea

Club President

Christmas Wheel Race – 15th December

For only the 2nd time this season riders we greeted with still conditions which usually means a quick pace and tight bunches, given the stakes were unusually higher this week as it was 10 points and a chance to get your name in the paper with a win in the Christmas wheel race.

G’s were away first for their 4 lap warm-up with auto qualification, Messrs’ Jones, Robey Snr and Crowe through.

C and Delta were away at 6, and, well it was interesting, a pre-race brief included the words, “resist the temptation to do something silly”, for future reference, the words should include “ successfully resist the temptation to do something silly”, two bunches come together no matter how much you shout and wave yellow flags, you sometimes just can’t understand it for them and it would appear when there is a sheep station on offer, 300 race briefings in my time with vets, every one of them, “if you’re lapped let them pass, give them space and then get on with it”, was just simply forgotten or ignored, and we know it works , 4 other grades demonstrated immaculate passing techniques on the night. Delta riders, in Boyd, Fitch, Wilson, Johnson and Groening through to the final, with C grade riders Tokich, Pitt, Shippley, Tanton joining them.

F Troop and E’s behaved circling the track and executing faultless overtaking manoeuvres with Sue Duckett, Sue Frost, and the usual F troop suspects, in Kim, Lindsay and William Frost getting a ride in the final. E’s represented by O’Sullivan, Legendary Mike Hayes, Morto, Tony Sheehan with Ian Shaw getting over the line for their 730 date.

A Train and B finished the qualification races with some incredible lap times 1:24 the fastest for the night @ 52K for the average with not even a hint of sick on the handlebars, both groups putting in a genuine effort to make the last 5.Atrain represented by Vroomans, Stewart, Crispin, Pellegrino and Scherl. With the B’s represented by Savage, Wilson, Reid, Palmer and Mike McGurgin.

Final @ 1930, 33 riders G: off 2:40, A off scratch and 5 laps of Helter Skelter for the grades in between, Both Robey and Jones set a pace where one lap down and the A’s not having left yet, that might have caused them to blow up at the end of the 2nd lap, E and F riders held the head of the course for most of the last three laps but were ultimately run down up the back straight on the final lap with Sue Duckett and Ian Shaw hanging in valiantly for minor places ultimately Delta team got their rider over the line with Martin Boyd taking the prize, not surprisingly after spending the early part of the night seagulling, the A’s and B’s were valiant from the back and made up incredible ground and perhaps with another 10 seconds to play with, the results would have been very different.

The Winners presented their awards by Club President, Alex O'Shea

1st: Martin Boyd

2nd: Sue Duckett

3rd: Rico Fitch

Thanks to Dan Ashcroft, Stu the medic and roo rustler and also to Alex O’Shea and Rob Langridge for the adult supervision in the absence of Henry and also for Rob in getting the handicapping close enough to make a real race of it.


Steve Dean

Winter Season Winners

The Winners of the Winter Season Points;

Womens: 1st Linda Stals (absent),

2nd Jan Koehler, 3rd Barbara Bayliss

Mens: 1st Marc Vroomans,

2nd James Meredith (absent), 3rd Graham Hendrie

Summer 2014/15 Season Winners

The Winners of last Summer Season Points;


• 1st Pauline Thorn

• 2nd Sue Frost

• 3rd Barbara Bayliss


• 1st Marc Vroomans

• 2nd Ian Morton

• 3rd Mark Harris

Christmas Track Race – 16th December

Unfortunately, the weather gods did not smile on this racing session. Initially it appeared that the track might escape rain. However, showers struck as the warm up time approached and did not cease until around 7.00pm. No racing was possible.

A number of riders attended the Christmas drinks and nibbles and enjoyed a convivial but cramped social gathering in the corridor of the track amenities.

A Merry Christmas to all trackies and their families. Please note that the text track session will be in the new year, on 6 January. See you there!

Merry Christmas,

Graeme O'Neill

Stromlo Criterium – 8th December

The weather conditions for the 96 riders were a lot kinder than the previous week when strong blustery winds made it difficult for the riders to stay together. This week a light steady breeze from the north west prevailed and conditions were clear and mild.

As usual G grade went off first but there only two starters and Heather Sommeriva took the win from Paul Robey. E and F grades were the next to go. E grade kept together for the entire race with Alex Sommeriva sprinting away to win by a respectable distance thus ensuring his better half wouldn’t have all the bragging rights for the glory of a race win that evening. The F grade group rode the first lap of their race lined up across the track TdF style with well known club member James Meredith at the centre. This was James’ last race as he is leaving to spend his retirement in his home state of sunny Queensland. James has participated in 476 events since he joined the club in 2006 and in that time he has made a significant contribution to the success of club races, both road and track. His willing and capable assistance at future events will be greatly missed. We wish him all the best for his forthcoming years of retirement. Needless to say the winner of the F grade was, yes you guessed it, James, closely followed by the Sue duo, Duckett and Frost.

A was off next with B following about 200 metres behind. Initially A took it fairly steady and within a couple of laps were nearly caught by B. At that point the trio of Bruce Goodspeed, Sean Ifland and Nathane Spillane attacked and the subsequent chase opened the gap to B by nearly half a lap. Both grades then stayed nicely grouped for a while with A moving just slightly faster than B. Obviously things were not exciting enough for B grade riders Nick Boylan and Paul Ledbrook. At about 10 minutes into the 40 minute race the pair decided to attack off the front at a pace that the rest of the group must have thought impossible to maintain. Their performance was impressive to say the least as after 5 or 6 laps they caught up with and were about to overtake A grade. A slight surge by A saw them drop behind again but they worked well together, maintaining their pace and lead on the rest of B right to the end of the race. Nick pulled ahead of Paul in the last lap to take the win. The rest of B sprinted for third place which was taken by Brendan Savage. There was not quite so much action in A grade apart from a few attacks which were countered by successful chases. Top three were Sean Ifland, Marc Vroomans and Damien Ruse.

Not a lot to report on for C and D. The prevailing conditions made it fairly easy for all riders to stay together and that is what happened. Both groups lapped at a similar pace and there was no overtaking or mixing of grades much to the relief of the officials. C grade podium was Bryan Holloway, Graham Tanton and Bernie Shaw. D grade Phil Cameron, Jack Hermes, and John Wilson. Many thanks to the helpers on the day, Andy Boyd, Rosemary Robinson and Bruce Jones. Also to first aider Stu Horyna who always assists by tracking and identifying riders.

Graham Hendrie

Reminder: Registration due by the end of the month

And a final reminder that your 2015 Registration will expire at the end of this month and you will not be able to race next year until you have registered for the 2016 season.

Simply go to the IMG site. Logon with the username and password that you used to register last year. The annual subscription for 2016 remains unchanged.

If you have forgotten your password, go to top right hand corner and click on username and password. That will enable IMG to send you another password to your email address. To ensure you transfer the numbers and letters correctly it is advised to cut and paste.

Any queries please direct them to membership@actvets.cc and not the contact on the password retrieval page.

Next Race

Racing will resume in 2016 with the first Crit on the 5th January and Track Racing on the 6th January.

Till then, have a great Christmas Break.