The second race in Cycling Southland’s Winter Racing Series was held on Saturday with the Donovan Points Race held on a 10 kilometre circuit from Retreat Road on the outskirts of Invercargill.
After last week’s season-opening time trial, riders were tested on the short circuit with points up for grabs on a 5, 3, 2 & 1-point basis on each of the five laps. This made for some spectacular sprint finishes every 15 or 20 minutes as the bunches made the judges work overtime.
A Grade proved clear-cut in the end as the master gave his pupils a lesson. Matt Randall made a successful return to the club racing scene claiming four sprint wins out of five for a final tally of 23 points to see off his protégés Matt Zenovich (14 points) and Brad Tuhi (11 points) for the win.
B Grade was shaping up for a gripping finish between Vaughan Edie and Dave Beadle before a last lap puncture forced Beadle’s withdrawal and Edie celebrated by winning the final sprint to claim an impressive victory on 18 points from Wayne Miller on 8 with Gabby Vermunt finishing strongly to earn points in the last two sprints and secure third place on a count-back from Rikki Griffin.
C Grade was the Wally Kopae Show who showed his track legs to kick for three sprint wins and two seconds for a final tally of 21 points, well clear of second-placed Garry Perkins on 12 with Neil Sutherland’s final sprint victory elevating him in to third spot on 8 points.
Two of the Race Series Leader jerseys changed hands following the weekend racing. Edie and Kopae will both wear the yellow kit next week after their efforts while the A Grade jersey will stay on the shoulders of Robert Huisman whose fourth place finish was enough to maintain his series lead.
Next week will see the Woodstock Handicap over 52 kilometres from Coopers Corner. Riders are asked to pre-register by midday on Friday. A late entry fee will apply for on the day entries.