The Peel Districts Cycling Club criterium at Pinjarra Industrial Estate last Sunday started with juniors “race”. Where anybody with a bicycle and helmet who wants to race, can ride in race conditions and under supervision for 10 minutes and a lap, to see if they are ready to race. There are some very fast young riders out there and some supervisors with tired legs.
Two weeks ago Campbell McDowell rode away from the rest of E grade to take an easy win. This time McDowell was joined by Christophe Gardener and the pair rode away from the rest of E grade. After a flying final lap, Gardener took the win in a sprint to the line over McDowell, with Phil Edwards third.
D grade saw a few attacks, a few frantic laps, but the bunch was together when shown the 5 minutes to go board. Finley Walker took this as an opportunity to attack. Walker quickly got a small gap, before the bunch started chasing in earnest. At the bell with one lap to go it looked like Walker would be caught, but in the end Walker hung on to take the win by less than a second from Paul Power and Ashley Hamilton.
After a few attacks, chases and counter attacks C grade was still together at the halfway mark, when Scott McDowell putting in a solid audition for B grade, by attacking the bunch, riding away passing B grade in the process and riding away for a solo victory. Keith Provost took out the bunch sprint for second ahead of Michael Mahoon.
B grade was a very stop, start, chase the attack, slow and wait for the next attack. It was always going to be a bunch sprint which was won by Dominic Da Silva with Jaden Green second and Adam Jones third.
A grade exploded from the start, and to quote the winner “it was the hardest five criterium laps I have ever raced”. After those fives laps a breakaway trio had formed and it was an unusual mix. Patrick Saccanni-Williams you would of expected, after he raced in Vietnam and New Zealand this year. Matt Connan in his first year as an under 19 and A grade rider and Joe Luarendi who after winning his first race in B grade two weeks ago decide to step up.
The trio worked together and flew round the course at 45kph, lapping the rest of A grade twice. With about ten minutes to go Connan punctured. He was allowed a lap out to get a spare wheel and he was back racing. It was only with two laps to go, the trio stopped working together and started looking at each other. Saccanni-Williams was the first to attack, he lead was short lived as the other two brought him back, then Connan counter attacked and rode away to take the win, Saccanni-Williams was second and Luarendi was third.